The first two REI Outessa Summits, which brought women together for outdoor weekends at Kirkwood Mountain Resort near Lake Tahoe in Calif., and Powder Mountain in Utah, drew 415 women aged 17 to 67 years old from 40 states and three countries. Attendees took part in hundreds of activities and presentations led by professional athletes, REI Outdoor School instructors, and sponsors that are leaders in the outdoor industry. Outessa’s first tribe of women experienced everything from rock climbing to wilderness survival training to mountain biking to kayaking to paddle boarding to backpacking to outdoor cooking and more, said event organizers.
Twenty of REI Outdoor School’s best female instructors guided hiking, trail photography, trail running, mountain biking, SUP, kayaking, backpacking, climbing, yoga and more in partnership with outdoor brands. With 70 years of instruction expertise between them, REI’s instructors represented the company’s leading education programs in Atlanta, Austin, Bay Area, Chicago, Denver, Los Angeles, Minnesota, Portland and Seattle.
“These first Outessa Summits far exceeded our expectations,” said Julia Stamps Mallon, co-founder and VP of Business Development for the REI Outessa Summit. “There was such palpable energy. We were able to create a supportive environment for an incredibly diverse group of women with a common desire to try something new. Many of them came to the event alone, but left with new friends and a wealth of education and experiences. I witnessed these adventurous women really connecting to the outdoors and to each other in a way that rarely happens. ”
“Outessa was created as an immersive experience to bring together women who are drawn to the outdoors,” said Sally Johnson, REI Outdoor Programs manager of events. “This has been a labor of love from the beginning. By partnering with like-minded brands, we’ve launched something truly special. We look forward building on the success of the first Outessa events for the 2017 series.”
Click here for images from Kirkwood and here for Powder Mountain. To learn the dates and locations of future Outessa Summits, sign up for email updates at Outessa.com, follow on Instagram and Twitter, and like on Facebook.