Boise summers are filled with camping, rivers, lakes, hiking, biking, and all sorts adventures. We want our community of young females to possess the skills they need to safely explore the outdoors with their families. On June 2nd twenty-nine girls flocked to the Jim Hall Foothills Learning Center for the third annual Boise Wild Skills. SheJumps’ Wild Skills youth events teach young girls the survival and technical skills they need for outdoor adventuring. To help us out, we were excited to welcome back some of our favorite community partners; Outdoor Exchange, Air St. Luke’s, Idaho Mountain Search and Rescue, and Albertsons.
The girls started off the day meeting their color coded teams. Once they were decked out in either purple or yellow, the girls took part in a dance party and yoga to kick off the day. They then rotated through the following fun filled stations:
In it’s second year, was the mountain biking station. We were thrilled to include bike and helmet donations from Boise Bicycle Project. We also enlisted the help of a friend and licensed MTB coach, Carolyn Park.
After learning about trail etiquette and pre-ride safety checks the girls took off to explore the wealth of trails Boise has to offer (some for the first time ever). There were multiple instances when some rock sections proved to be challenging for the girls. As a group, we stopped to scope out the best lines and talk about how to safely ride the technical features. We only had two minor crashes and zero bandaids! The girls that crashed even hiked back up to successfully try again. The huge smiles and and happy squeals let us know the immense amount of pride the girls felt after tackling the trails.
In addition to mountain biking, the girls went through stations filled with valuable education on Shelter Building, Navigation, 10 Essentials & Leave No Trace, and First Aid. In Shelter Building, a Tracy Crites, owner of Outdoor Exchange, taught the girls what to pack for shelter, and also how to make a shelter using items found from their surroundings if they were ever stranded. The girls saw this as a fun opportunity to build with tarps, emergency blankets, and even garbage bags.
Navigation was lead by the experts from Idaho Mountain Search and Rescue. They taught the girls the basics of how to read a topographic map and of course to Never Eat Soggy Waffles. The girls even used real compasses to put “Red in the Shed” to find true North.
Next up was 10 Essentials & Leave No Trace. SheJumps Regional Coordinators, Stacey Hopstad and Kim Holloway, took the lead to teach the girls how to pack and prepare for an adventure as well as how to protect the beautiful places they visit. The girls took turns telling stories about a time when they were disappointed to find garbage or other ways humans had disturbed the animals or plants around them. They all left inspired to be advocates and experts at Leave No Trace.
The last station was First Aid. The girls were able to learn the process of what to do in case of an injury when they are out in the wild; Stay Calm, Get Help, and how to use their packed First Aid items. During the class the girls drew fake injuries with markers ranging from scrapes and broken bones to more elaborate/creative cougar attacks. They then treated these injuries with the help of the Air St. Luke’s experts.
Wild Skills Boise was made possible by a our special group of volunteers who gave their time to help make this an event the participants will never forget. Delicious volunteer lunches and snacks were donated by the ever generous Albertsons and snacks for the day were provided by Clif and GoGoSqueez. Thank you all to helped make this such a special event for these young ladies!
To learn more about our community partners, visit them at:
Boise Bicycle Project: http://www.boisebicycleproject.org/
Idaho Mountain Search and Rescue: http://www.imsaru.org/
Outdoor Exchange: http://www.outdoor-exchange.com/
St. Luke’s: https://www.stlukesonline.org/
GoGo Squeez: www.gogosqueez.com