How to Get Started on Trail: Advice from 7 Women Adventurers

How to Get Started on Trail: Advice from 7 Women Adventurers

We're rounding out Women's History Month by highlighting women on our Ambassador team who are inspiring others and making history outdoors. Here is some trail-tested advice on how to get started backpacking, bikepacking, thruhiking, tramping, and more. 

Not to mention, enjoy some epic mantras to keep you moving forward, too.

How to Get Started on Trail: Backpacking and Bikepacking


Sarah - Bikepacker 

My advice to others getting into bike packing is not to be too ambitious on having all the gear and gadgets at the beginning.

Don’t be pressured into buying all new and fancy items. Find out if you like it first and borrow or buy second hand items to get yourself started. What I’ve found to be best practice as well is to obtain gear that you can utilize for your other outdoor activities, that way you’ll get more bang for your buck.

My favourite mantra is “the adventure begins when something goes wrong!”

Although not ideal for things to go wrong, those situations force us to be resourceful and better at managing future stressful moments when they arise. :)
 
-From Squamish, B.C., Sarah Fix fuels her passion for mountain adventures on her Surly Bridge Club. Off the bike, she coaches for Dialed In Cycling, teaches outdoor education and writes for Bike Gear DatabaseFollow her adventurers at @ms.fix_it

Cajon Pass, CA on the PCT.

Cayla aka ‘Cheshire’ - Thruhiker

Advice to others wanting to get started on a thru hike?

Don’t overthink it and certainly don’t stress about what your thru hike will look like to others. If you want to do something, even if you think you can’t and others will think you’re crazy, just give it a try!

You will find your own path and will be amazed at what learn about yourself along the way.

- Cayla aka ‘Cheshire’ is a thruhiker, backpacker, animal lover, and Erythropoietic Protoporphyria warrior. Follow her adventures at @cdank13
 

Kim - Thruhiker

"Never quit on a bad day" is a famous thru-hiking mantra that I used to swear by and resonate with. Until I took it too far and it almost cost me my leg in Northern Lapland!

So here is my advice to new thru-hikers: Push yourself, as much as you can. But it is okay to quit, even on a bad day. You are already doing amazing, just by getting out there in the first place. Thru-hiking is a different beast.

- @kimberleymgs is a thru-hiker, avid skier, and nature lover who works in the fields of Environmental Conservation and Indigenous Rights in Canada; and does UGC on the side.


Madelyn - Thruhiker

My advice to anyone getting started in backpacking, even thru-hiking, is to start with what you can easily get!

Whether that means using what you already have, borrowing from friends, or getting older models to save money -- if it gets you started, it's good enough! You can always upgrade later!

- Madelyn (@madelyn_meanders) is a thru-hiker embarking on the Continental Divide Trail in 2024! 

Jillian - Outdoor Adventurer and Photographer

Advice to others wanting to get started in new outdoor hobbies: Join groups and take courses that will introduce you to people who are also wanting to learn.

Having others to increase your skill with creates a more supportive and safer environment when in the outdoors.

- Jillian lives in North Pole, Alaska and spends her time photographing the last frontier as well as running her own outdoor brand that introduces people to recreating in her state. You can find her at @jillian.blum

 

Alice - Backpacker

Advice to others wanting to get started in hiking / backpacking? Start slow with a short walk close to home and slowly build up to the level you want to reach.

Advice when selecting gear? Shop second-hand if you can until you know what type of gear you need and like, then if you can splurge on gear that will last a long time.

Favorite mantra for hiking / backpacking? I can do hard things, or one step in front of the other.

- Alice lives in New Zealand and is an adventurer, blogger, SLT and māmā.
Follow her NZ adventures and tips for tramping at @alice.adventuring


Erica - Long-Distance Hiker 

Advice to others wanting to start hiking/backpacking?

Don’t wait for someone to join you. Do it scared. Look up the 10 essentials, be prepared, and start small with 1-2 mile trails in your area with the gear that you already own!

You don’t need anyone else, and you don’t need expensive gear to enjoy nature. If you go outdoors, you’re outdoorsy. :)

- Erica is a bartender, musician and full-time adventurer. Follow @ericaraehikes on TikTok + Instagram.

How to Get Started Backpacking and Bikepacking

We don’t know about you, but we’re ready to get outdoors! Every adventurer has a story, and we are stoked to shine a spotlight on a few of the women on our FlipFuel Ambassador team who are making big waves on trail. Whether it’s backpacking, backpacking or thruhiking, every Ambassador brings a unique perspective and paves the way for others.

Thanks for checking out all of the great tips. If you would like to add your tips to our blog or have questions about joining our FlipFuel Ambassador team, send us a note on IG at @flipfuel

See you out there!
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