10 Signs You’re An Adventure Mama

By Jenny Williams, Girls Who Hike Tennessee Ambassador

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I hear a lot of young women say they worry they won’t be able to keep up their adventurous lifestyle when they have kids. I had the same thoughts and fears…and boy was I wrong. Sure, you have to be more flexible and your adventures look a little different, but I would say that part of my life has become more exciting with my kids along for the ride. My husband, Nate, and I have 3 kids- Ryder (8), Finn (5) and Adell (1). We live in Tennessee and spend a lot of time hiking and camping in the southeast.

Here are 10 signs you’re an adventure mama…

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#1 Most moms cringe when their kid says “I have to poop”, and the only place in sight is a gas station. Oh no, not you! You’re on your way to a trailhead with no bathroom, and this happens, your reaction? YES!! THANK YOU JESUS!

#2 You have a minimum of 3 hand sanitizers hanging on the outside of your hiking pack for the pre-hike snack, been hiking for 2 minutes snack, and the 27 snacks to follow for the 3 mile hike you’re on.

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#3 You have a super hero 6th sense for spotting cool bugs and critters along the trail and get cool mom points for picking up said bug to show your kids. If you’re like me, when I’m outside, I’m all “oh wow, look at this one (holding it in my hands)”. In my house, see the same bug, I might just burn the house down. Irrational? I think not..

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#4 Before kids…”I don’t “glamp”, nope, tents all the way for me!” After first tent camping trip with a one year old….scrolling craigslist camper listings. 

We are loving the camper life right now, but I’m excited to take our kids backpacking when they’re all at the age they can carry their own stuff. We’re waiting on Adell, she’s got a while ;)

#5 You turn your head for a minute, and when you look back, your kids have scaled HUGE rocks and are standing on a ledge. First, you scream and yell at them to step back from the edge…so you can take their picture.

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#6 You have “a whiner” so, when people ask you how the hike went, you feel like you have to preface your response with “I really do love my kids but…” 

Our 5 year old definitely has his moments, but it’s all worth it when he has a blast playing in an incredible waterfall or staring out at a gorgeous overlook. One day, I was driving him to preschool, and he said, “Mama, isn’t nature just beautiful?” #winning

#7 When you go on a hike with just grownups, you feel like you’re on one of those moving sidewalks at the airport.

#8 You finish back to school shopping for your son. When you get all of the shirts hung in his closet, you realize you literally bought EVERY shirt Old Navy made with pictures of mountains, bears, the word “adventure”, etc. I can’t help it…

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#9 You think kid Camelbak backpacks are the best thing ever invented.

#10 You recognize that sometimes adventuring with kids is complete madness, but the good and amazing ALWAYS outweighs the crazy. You wouldn’t have it any other way 


Jenny is the ambassador for our Tennessee chapter. You can join her local meetups and discussions through our Tennessee chapter by clicking here. To become a member of Girls Who Hike, click here.