Rebecca Walsh stands on a section of the Continental Divide Trail between the Battlepass and Deep Jack trailheads in southern Wyoming, taking in the view.
“The landscape is beautiful,” she says. “A good mix of pine trees and high alpine tundra, some streams, lush evergreen forests. We hiked through some lodge poles earlier, and we’ll finish the day in a dense, beautiful forest.”
Sounds like a nice place to find yourself in. Especially if you’re Rebecca Walsh. Because for her it’s more than an adventure. It’s her job.
Walsh is the founder of Hike Like A Woman, a Wyoming-based organization dedicated to removing the roadblocks to outdoor adventure for women. Which today involves introducing four women from four states — the nearest Colorado, the farthest New Jersey — to this lovely, challenging, zigzagging 12-mile section of the Continental Divide.
“I’m kind of an introverted extrovert and I love people, but I also love the solitude of nature,” Walsh says. “So trips like this are an interesting balance. There’s a shared, common experience that’s just amazing. But I also like taking those moments where I can just walk away from the campsite and listen to the wind in the trees or the birds chirping.”
Walsh was born in Wyoming and caught the hiking bug from her outdoorsy parents, who loved to fish and hike and cross-country ski with their kids.
“I feel really blessed, because I grew up in this awesome family where getting outside and going on outdoor adventures was a normal activity for us. But I realize that not every woman had that experience growing up,” she says.