We are celebrating women in the outdoors through REI’s #ForceOfNature project. This is not a sponsored post, we just want to keep sharing our thoughts and feelings about what it means to be a Force of Nature. You can shop through our affiliate links here to help support our Ambassador team.

What do you do when your body is sick or hurt and you can’t get on the trails? Or when physical limitations keep you from an adventure. Lucy has had to deal with those limitations but it doesn’t stop her from kicking ass. Here’s what she thinks about being a Force Of Nature.

Lucy is a Hike Like A Woman Ambassador. You can also find her on her website, Just A Bear On A Backpack.


What is a force of nature?  

It is a natural phenomenon that humans can’t control.  

There are 5 known forces of nature; Gravity, Electromagnetism, The Strong Nuclear Force, The Weak Nuclear Force and ME!  

Why do I qualify as a force of nature?  

Well, I am definitely not able to be controlled by humans.

Ha!  Just ask my doctors, boyfriend, friends, co-workers and family.  

I do what I want when I want.

And if you try to tell me I can’t do something, by golly I will do it.  

On December 9, 2009, I was told I may never be able to walk again due to the damage to my hip, back, and nerves from a wreck.  

How did I respond to that???

I went from not able to walk to hiking around 20 miles in a day!  

It wasn’t easy in the beginning.  

My first hike was only half a mile and I barely made it!  

But I refused to quit.  

I pushed myself harder than I ever have in my life.  

Hiking was healing me.

But it was healing me more than just physically, it was healing parts of me that I didn’t even realize were damaged.  

It was also preparing my body for the next war.

On December 15, 2016, I was told I wouldn’t make it through the night because I had a DVT (blood clot) in my leg that broke loose and became Multiple Bilateral Pulmonary Embolisms (blood clots covering my lungs).

How did I respond to that???

Not only did I make it through the night, I am still here today and I am well on my way to hiking again!

And yes, I am a natural phenomenon as well.

A phenomenon is any state or process known through the senses rather than by intuition or reasoning.  

Photo courtesy Amanda ‘Lucy’ Haskins

Intuition and reasoning say I shouldn’t be here today and logically there is no way I should be hiking, bouldering, swimming, kayaking or caving but I am!  

My senses told me I could do it, my heart told me I could do it.  

Everything and everyone else said I couldn’t.  

I think you can figure out the natural part of who I am.  

Nature is my home.  

Nature is my happy place.  

Nature is my therapy.  

Nature is the best relationship I have ever been in!

We, as woman are all Forces of Nature.  

Society says we don’t belong in the outdoors.  

Outdoor recreation used to be dominated by men.  

Well, guess what men?  

Woman are a natural phenomenon that cannot be controlled.  

And we are taking over the outdoors!  

But you are welcome to join us.

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