I was raised by an Outdoor Mom.
I remember her loading my siblings and as many neighborhood kids as she could fit in our 1987 Dodge caravan and driving to trailheads all over the place to take us hiking. I also remember her bold attempt to take us camping without my Dad. It didn’t go as planned. We packed our leaky tent in the middle of the night. A rainstorm caused us to retreat home to camp out in the living room instead.
My Mom is my outdoor role model, and pretty much my role model in every other aspect of life too.
Since becoming a Mom I’ve searched for other women role models as well, especially those who run outdoor businesses or write outdoor blogs. I think there’s something to be said about a woman who can balance the exhausting work of being a small business owner with the demands of family life. there’s also something to be said about woman who is willing to publicly admit on a blog that her kid barfed all over a tent, or that sometimes it’s hard getting kids out the door and onto the trail.
I have a lot of favorite outdoor blogs written by Moms who are devoted to connecting kids to nature. Here are 7 Amazing Outdoor Moms and why I think they are amazing.
- Patricia Ellis-Herr
If you haven’t read the book, “UP – A Mother and Daughter’s Peakbagging Adventure,” by Patricia Ellis-Herr you really should. It’s one of my favorites. The book is all about a Mother/Daughter conquest of the forty-eight 4,000 footers in New Hampshire. The book was published a few years ago and since then this family has gone on to hike the John Muir Trail and El Camino and have many, many other outdoor adventures. There’s just something about a Mom bagging peaks with her daughters. Check out their website, Trish, Alex, and Sage right here.
- Amelia Mayer
You’ve all heard about Amelia by now. She’s awesome in so many ways but did you know this about her blog, Tales of a Mountain Mama…I never, ever buy a piece of gear for my children until I’ve searched her website for gear reviews? In fact, I’ve been known to message Amelia in a panic right before I whip out my debit card to make a kid-gear purchase. (Kids gear is expensive!) Amelia has reviewed just about every piece of baby, toddler and kid gear and outdoor clothing out there. She doesn’t do sissy gear testing either, she really puts gear to the test and writes honest gear reviews too. That’s what makes her one of the best.
- Meghan J Ward
Meghan’s wildly popular website, The Adventures in Parenthood Project, is a well-written and beautiful narrative of Meghan’s introduction into parenthood. The thing that sets Meghan apart is that she’s not afraid to admit that motherhood sometimes gets in the way of outdoor adventure. I love an experience she recently shared about heading home from the campsite at 3:30 am because her daughter wouldn’t sleep. Honest stories like this are so refreshing.
- Alyssa Erikson
It’s easy to scroll through Instagram and never see an unhappy child, or a child with blisters or a sunburn or a bug bite or a child completely melting down on the side of the trail. I’m guilty of this on my own account but if you hike with kids you know that those things are very real. I knew Alyssa was the real deal a few weeks ago when she posted this comment with a photo on Instagram.
“So much is possible with kids, it is us who limits them. But it isn’t always easy. I realize that you glance at my photos and think it is like the Sound of Music as we frolicked up to the summit and back down. Maybe for small moments it is like that. But there are almost always tears and ‘I’m never going on an adventure again’ issued from their little throats. This last weekend brought hot sun and bug bites and a few face-plants on the trail.”
Thanks for keeping it real, Alyssa. You can find her blog, The Kid Project, right here.
- Linda McGurk
Back in my cross-country ski and biathlon racing days I spent about a month training in Finland one summer. I noticed that Finnish children played outside a lot, and they got dirty too. Their mother’s didn’t seem to mind or care one bit. Not like my generation of American mom’s with our “Oh, my gosh, do NOT splash in that puddle and ruin your shoes,” kinda attitudes. Linda brings a little bit this Scandanavian outdoor parenting to the blogosphere with her website, Rain or Shine Mama.
I loved reading about her getting in trouble for letting her kids play in a creek but I also love this post where she says that sometimes she sends her children outdoors for selfish reasons, sometimes her kids watch TV, and (gasp) even play indoors! That’s a balancing act that I can relate to.
- Tanya Koob
I actually went to college in Alberta for a few years and every time I read Tanya’s blog (and Meghan’s for that matter) I want to go back to Canada and explore more in the Canadian Rockies. I love reading about Tonya’s adventures with her 6-year-old son. But after reading about her hiking and snowshoeing adventures with friends she inspired me to get out with my local Mom friends and explore more without our kids. Mom’s need to get away sometimes too! You can find her blog, Family Adventures in the Canadian Rockies right here.
- Anka Trifan
If you love beautiful photos of the Pacific Northwest then check out Anka Trifan’s blog, Hike-a-Tot. It’ll make you want to hike, it’ll make you smile, and it’ll make you thankful that there are parents out there like Anka who climb big, big, big mountains with their little, little kids. Thanks for always inspiring me, Anka.
And of course, I have to give a shout-out to all of the awesome Outdoor Mom’s who read this blog and hike with me here in Laramie, Wyoming. Ya’ll rock 🙂
Do you have a favorite outdoor blog or website written by an amazing outdoor Mom? I know I missed a bunch so link up in the comments below!
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Did you like this post? Spread the word and share it with a friend. Curious about where to find more? Check out Just Trails for trail information in Southeastern Wyoming and Northern Colorado. If you hike with kids join our kid-friendly outdoor community at Moms Who Hike.
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Now get out there and take a hike!