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News: Sophia Danenberg is your Wild Speaker!

Your West Virginia Wild Speaker is…

A woman who has stood on top of the World

Greetings Explorer Chicks!

I know you all have been on pins and needles waiting to find out who the heck will be sharing her story at West Virginia Wild this year.

Last year, Stacey Kozel came out to share her story of thru hiking the Appalachian Trail. Big whoop, right? Wrong. She no longer has use of her legs, due to complications with Lupus. With braces on both legs, she made her way from Georgia to Maine. Stacey was an absolute joy and inspiration to us all. Her smile and laugh were simply infectious!

So, how in the world are we going to top that? Trust me. It was tough.

Last month I attended the ATTA Adventure Elevate conference in Banff. During one of the workshops, James Edward Mills, journalist and founder of the Joy Trip Project, shared the story of Sophia Danenberg. James went on to share how she became the first African American to summit Mt. Everest. Holy smokes. She’s kinda a big deal. Right then and there, I set my sights on inviting her to share her story with our Explorer Chicks.

Later that night I hunted down James and asked for an introduction to Sophia. A few days later, the conversations started. I am beyond stoked to announce that she will be our 2018 West Virginia Wild speaker! Woo hoo!

Wait a minute, Nicki. I thought Explorer Chick was all about Real Women, Real Adventures. Climbing Mt. Everest is way out of my wheelhouse. Guess what? Sophia didn’t grow up in an alpine region climbing mountains since she could walk. She grew up with a family who could be described at “Indoorsy.” Who else can relate? (🙋‍♀️ Yep, me too!).

Her outdoor love affair started in high school and slowly escalated over the years. It was tiny steps in the right direction and learning the right skills that got her to the top of the world. In 2002, she was introduced to glaciers when she climbed both Mt. Rainier and Mt. Baker. Sophia’s love of the mountains took her all over the world, from the Matterhorn and Chamonix in the Alps to Kilimanjaro and Mount Kenya in Africa to Ama Dablam and Mount Everest in the Himalayas. With her summit of Mount Everest in 2006, Sophia became the first African American to summit the highest mountain in the world. Wowzas!

She will be speaking on Friday night of West Virginia Wild all the while camping with us.

Yes, you can still sign up! Come join over 50 of us crazy Explorer Chicks in the mountains of West Virginia!

I am also stoked to have the entire Explorer Chick team in attendance. Mandi, Becca, Hannah, Lauren, Lynsey, Heather, and myself will all be there! (So, you know it be a good time!).

In other news, our Northern Lights Iceland trip in November is confirmed with 5 Explorer Chicks booked. This means we have 7 spots remaining.

Dates: November 5-11, 2018.
To Save $300 now through July 1, use Early Bird Discount Code: EBICENL110518
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A couple spots have opened up on our December Iceland dates as well. Discount Codes for those are: EBICENL120418 and EBICNL121118.

Last, but not least, look for one final Brand New Trip for this fall. It’s a new destination for us and a place that I know is on quite a few of your bucket lists! Yee haw!

That’s all I have for now! Keep on living that adventure life, Explorer Chicks!

Adventure on!

Nicki Bruckmann
Founder, Explorer Chick

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