The inaugural REI Outessa Summits, at Kirkwood Mountain Resort near Lake Tahoe in California and Powder Mountain in Utah, drew 415 women aged 17 to 67 and from 40 states and three countries.

20 of REI Outdoor School’s best female instructors guided hiking, trail photography, trail running, mountain biking, SUP, kayaking, backpacking, climbing and yoga in partnership with outdoor brands. 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.”

“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.”

The REI Outessa Summit Events are outdoor weekend getaways for women offering outdoor experiences, product trials and education from professional athletes and expert guides.