GO! Girls Outdoors

A resource for women in Outdoor Education and Recreation

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Gear Resources
Gear manufacturers have realised that lots of women like the outdoors and they're different shapes from men. Here's what's out there, and where you can buy it.

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Travel Resources
A selection of travel resources especially for women who love to travel. Includes a list of online communities if you do it yourself, or companies if you need a little help.

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Surfing Resources
Listed here are some links to resources from all over the world that cater to women who love surfing.

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Hiking Resources
Extended walks are great for the mind and spirit and lots of women love to take part in them. Check out these resources and get inspired to go on a walking adventure.

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Snow Sports

Snow Sports Resources
Skiing, snowboarding, backcountry, polar expeditions - all done in the snow and all done by lots of amazing women.  Check out these resources to find out more...

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Kayaking Resources
White water, surfing, sea kayaking, sprint racing, marathon racing, multisport, fishing...is there anything you can't do from a kayak? Explore these resources!

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Cycling Resources
A list of resources for all sorts of cycling - mountain biking, road biking, touring, racing, recreation and commuting - all specific to women.

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Climbing Resources
Women can (and have) achieved incredible things in climbing. Listed in this section are a collection of climbing and moutaineering resources that are useful and inspiring for all climbers.

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A list of organisations that cater exclusively to women, or run trips exclusively for women. A great way to find a women-specific adventure in your area.

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Outdoor Industry

Outdoor Industry Resources
Looking for resources to help you plan programs, companies and organisations that cater for women or organisations you can join? Look no further...

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Disappearing Tarn

Dave and Mark go walkingThe best thing about Tasmania, apart from the fact that all the bike riders wave to each other and also the fact that the food is awesome, is that you can drive 15 or 20 minutes out of the capital city and be immersed in the wilderness.  It’s winter in Tasmania at the moment and June has experienced record rainfall, so when Dave and I were planning our weekend’s activities, camping was a less than appealing option - especially considering there’s only daylight from about 8am to 5pm at the moment and the rest of the time would be spent in my tiny, 1.5 person tent.  So instead we decided to adventure close by Hobart.

Adventures that are close to home are fantastic.  You can get up when the sun gets up, have a leisurely breakfast, pack a tasty lunch and walk out the door at a friendly hour.  Saturday’s adventure, which started at about 9am, was to walk on the foothills of Mt Wellington and marvel at a waterfall that we predicted would be swollen and impressive from all the rain recently.  A decent 6 hour walk which would be followed by dinner at a friend’s house - perfect for a misty, rainy day.

Hobart's WildernessIn the Mercury this week (this is Hobart’s paper for those who don’t know), Mt Wellington was described as the world’s most beautiful weather forecaster.  For non-Tasmanians, Mt Wellington towers above the state’s capital city, Hobart, and has as many moods as there are days in a year.  It’s such a part of Hobart and such an impressive presence from every part of the city, it is known simply as ‘the mountain’.  The weather in Hobart tends to sweep over the mountain, so if it’s shrouded in mist, it will probably rain in Hobart shortly.  From my childhood home in Hobart you can see the mountain from the kitchen window, and before going out we would take a quick look at it to see whether or not a coat would be necessary (most days, yes, just in case).

The mountain also has a vast network of walking tracks, and this is where our waterfall was.  Our circuit also led us past the mysterious Disappearing Tarn, which is marked on the Mt Wellington map with a dotted line.  I pictured it as a swamp that filled up with water sometimes, and we all thought that perhaps it would be there because it had rained so much in the past few weeks - especially after walking up to the tarn’s ridge in the flowing creek that used to be the track!  

Disappearing TarnDespite the fact that during my recent trip to the US I spent a weekend learning about ‘attitude and awareness’ in nature, and practiced increasing my perceptual awareness, I managed to walk right past it.  Luckily the others saw it and called me back, because it wasn’t just a swamp filled with water.  Instead the Disappearing Tarn was a crystal clear, sparkling blue lake nestled in the dolerite scree beneath a small ridge.  Obviously the water table was high enough for the tarn to be filled because it had no visible water flowing in, or out.  This made it incredibly still, apart from a ‘gloop’ every now and again as some water displaced the air between the rocks under the tarn.  A seasoned-looking bushwalker told us that he’d been visiting the Disappearing Tarn for the past 25 years and he’d never seen water in it before that day.

When I lived in Canada, my Canadian friends would tease me because I always talked about Tasmania as if it was the best place in the world (which it is, of course).  And really, where else can you drive 20 minutes out of a capital city, spend as many hours as you wish traipsing around the wilderness, see a mysterious tarn, marvel at a pounding waterfall, admire at least four different, unique plant ecosystems and then return in time for a cup of tea and dinner?  Yes my Canadian friends, yet another point chalked up for Tasmania!

Sea kayaking at BrunyAddendum: while we were walking, others were paddling the creek that the falls are situated on, which is a Class IV(+) creek, both above and below the falls.  We bumped into 3 other parties walking and saw a few mountain bikers too, despite the drizzle and mist.  The next day we drove 20 minutes again and went sea kayaking on crystal clear water in the blazing sunshine.  Others were out sailing, fishing and picnicking.  On the way home we stocked up on fresh, local, tree-ripened fruit, free range eggs and organic vegies from roadside stalls.  How good is that!?  

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