I had a serious adventurous streak as a kid. I was interested in fencing, horseback riding, and solo travel—none of which made sense for our family’s budget—so I channeled my energy into writing instead.
Then, in my early 20s, I finally had my chance. I signed up for my first skydiving course, and it changed my life. People skydive for different reasons. Eight years and 600 skydives later, I realized that I skydive because jumping out of airplanes makes me feel incredibly alive. It’s also a reminder that despite being an adult with real responsibilities, I still need to make time for play, imagination, sense of discovery, and sense of wonder.
Skydiving taught me that saying yes to adventure and trying new things outside of my comfort zone is incredibly empowering. But it also allowed me to meet so many strong, adventurous women, reminding me that there is a place for all of us in adventure sports. Even though the barriers each of us faces may be different, I believe that outdoor activities like skydiving, climbing, and hiking are for everyone.
One of the groups that often don’t get recognized in this space is moms. The women below are pitching tents, lacing up hiking boots, jumping out of airplanes, and posting about all of the badass things they do. They’re inspiring, honest, and totally relatable, and scrolling their profiles may even push you to finally start planning that big, exciting trip you’ve been dreaming of. Most important, they’ll remind you to get out there, play, and discover what makes you feel alive, too.
Kellie Torio and her partner live in Los Angeles with their two-year-old daughter. She and her husband both grew up snowboarding with their families. “That turned into rock climbing and backpacking and a lot of dirt in our hair, and it has stuck with us,” the 26-year-old mom explains. She enjoys climbing as well as canyoneering in the San Gabriel Mountains, which Kellie describes as a “free water park for people who know how to use ropes, harnesses, and belay devices.”
Her love of the outdoors and passion for working with her hands is what led to her current position with Sierra Madre Search and Rescue. When she first applied, she was attending a fashion institute and studying design. Kellie laughs when she retells the story; “I was like, ‘There’s no way. Nothing in my background says I would be a good fit for this.’ ” But she was wrong. She enjoys training on everything from rappelling to snow anchors to swift water rescue. Check out Kellie’s account for exciting photos of her search and rescue training and heartwarming photos of her daughter.