Hiking events

An ‘a-ha moment’ while hiking led this woman to create a huge community of adventurers

Welcome to Euronews Travel’s Women Beyond Borders, where we bring you women from around the world who are leading brave and adventurous lives and tackling personal challenges on the road.

While some travel the world in search of the most unique experiences or pursue a lifestyle that many would dream of, others are breaking the mold of traditionally male-dominated industries. We hope the series inspires you to believe in the power of your own dreams.

Bex Band had a wide variety of jobs. After college, she worked in administration, as a personal assistant, as a charity fundraiser, in the production of corporate videos and she even started training to become a teacher. What did she learn from all these experiences? That none of this suited him.

“I was having a really hard time finding a job that I was happy with because I didn’t have the confidence to get into things that really excited me, says Bex.

Cut to today, she’s an adventurer, writer, content creator, expedition organizer and founder of the UK’s largest women’s adventure group. It therefore always has variety but everything is linked by a theme: adventure.

What can we learn from Bex about building a life that works for you?

“My biggest piece of advice for someone who might be struggling to find a career path they love or a job they love doing is to actually just start pursuing your passions and follow things you’re passionate about. really,” she told Euronews Travel.

find a way in life

When asked to look back, Bex sees the turning point in her life as when she first read about Israel’s National Trail, a super-long 1,000km hiking trail spanning the length of Israel.

She’s never done anything like it and didn’t even know something like it existed, but naturally felt drawn to it because her husband is from Israel.

At the time, she was halfway through her teacher training, but something was off. So she decided to try her luck on an adventure, something that ultimately turned her on.

“I kind of threw myself into it [expedition] and I just thought I was going to do it, even though I was really unfit and really inexperienced,” says Bex.

It took Bex 2 months to complete the hike. She says it was the hardest thing she had ever done, but she also loved “living this simple existence of being in nature, without having all the stresses and strains of everyday life”.

“And that was a pretty big discovery because I realized ‘I actually want to share this and have other people experience it too’,” she adds.

Experiencing sexism in adventure travel

As Bex became drawn to adventure, she began taking lessons to equip her for future travels.

Although she was determined to succeed, she often found the world of adventure to be very male-dominated and too focused on extremes and pushing boundaries.

“I think it was one of the first times in my life that I was really in a situation where I was experiencing overt sexism and it really shook my confidence,” says Bex.

The people she didn’t meet who changed her life forever

During her journey through Israel, she met many other travelers traveling the same route. But not one of them was a woman.

She was shocked to find that no other woman wanted to attempt this incredible route. She decided something had to change.

“It inspired me to create Love Her Wild, to create a different kind of space outdoors, one that wasn’t competitive, that was supportive, and that had a little more emphasis on fun so that maybe women can start to feel inspired to get out more and maybe make the first steps towards adventure easier.

The watershed moment that made Bex Band a full-time adventurer

The first expedition organized by Bex saw her, accompanied by a group of women, in one of the most mountainous regions of the United Kingdom, the lake regionin 2017. There they would attempt to traverse the equivalent height of Mount Everest in just five days.

Once the group began their expedition, they realized the gargantuan and unachievable task ahead of them.

One day, after climbing up and down a steep section of the mountain to try and quickly rack up extra meters, the women decided to continue with the expedition, but to abandon their unachievable task and simply enjoy the journey.

“At the time, I was like, ‘This is it, this is it. No one will ever go on an adventure with me again.’ “, tells Bex to Euronews.

“But in fact, the opposite happened. And the people who followed [online] seeing what great friends we made on this trip and how we had such a great time even though we didn’t reach our goal.”

How can I participate in Love Her Wild?

Love Her Wild is an adventure organization for women, with local groups across Britain.

Bex started the group about 5 years ago, originally creating a Facebook group and inviting friends. It has now grown into a community of over 30,000 women.

The majority of what they do is still on the Facebook group and it’s full of women looking for boyfriends for their own mini-adventures. Or you can join one of the adventures organized through the group.

Love Her Wild has also set up funds and grants to try to remove as many barriers as possible to getting women out. They help provide equipment to women in need and help others gain outdoor leadership qualifications.

“There is a real lack of role models,” explains Bex.

“So, actually, it’s really wonderful if you can train a woman who will then step into roles and then go and inspire a lot of girls of the future.”

Right now, Love Her Wild is hosting their biggest event yet – the End2End Relay. It started on June 16, from Land’s End, the most southerly point in the UK, and consists of a series of 74 day hikes, heading north to John O’Groats, the northern tip of Scotland.

The relay raises funds for The Woodland Trust, which helps protest against wild spaces in the UK. Although some days are already full, there are still a few places left in some stages of the relay, so if you want to participate, hurry!

Watch the video above for more on Bex and Love Her Wild.