Christine Gautreaux holds a Masters in Social Work and is a Life Coach and Certified InterPlay Leader. She is dedicated to the pursuit of play, joy, art & social justice. Her superpowers include connecting people, helping folks manifest their dreams, standing up against injustice and using art to make a difference in the world. Christine uses performance art, movement, poetry, storytelling and Interplay to help women who are incarcerated, people living with severe and persistent mental illness, and homelessness. She also works with women, activists and artists to maintain balance and self-care during these intense times we find ourselves living.
"I grew up in California and spent formative years going to the Sierras, as well as the coastal redwoods. I started camping as a Girl Scout. I moved to Georgia in 1984 & later became Assistant Scoutmaster of BSA Troop 54 for 7 years. I've done lots of camping & hiking and a little backpacking. I'm kind of a gear geek, I love to see what's new or what I can cobble together for different uses. I like both the comfort of car camping and the challenge of backpacking. Some of my favorite adventures to date are exploring Yosemite, Boy Scout events & training, zip lining in the canyons of Mexico, and walking the public footpaths in the Cotswolds. I've been with Trail Dames about 3 years and have really enjoyed getting outside with other women.
I will teach beginners knot tying for campers & hikers. I will talk about types of knots, uses, and tips, and we will practice as many knots as we have time for. "
Carla Robertson is a master life coach who specializes in helping busy people find their true selves and reclaim their sense of wonder and joy. She works with individuals and groups and leads courses and retreats in everything from indulgent money management to stress reduction to stillness in nature. With a former career in education and educational consulting, Carla loves to teach, and her presentations reflect her enthusiasm for empowering participants and making learning fun. Carla has been camping out since Girl Scout summer camp and she solo thru-hiked the Appalachian Trail in 2009 (Trail name Zipper.) She is the founder of Wild and White Blazing, a "virtual campfire" program for women planning a long distance hike. Via WWB, women can hear the stories of dozens of successful women hikers of all ages and get support about everything from fears to gear to food preparation to planning. No matter what, Carla puts her feet on the Appalachian Trail somewhere each year. Carla writes for Appalachian Trials and is the author of Badass Women on the AT.
Dr. Karen Lord Rutter is a retired high school Principal and the author of Northbounders: 2,186 Miles of Friendship, a story of Copper, the Golden Retriever, and Blast the thru-hiker on their Appalachian Trail adventure. The book is based on the true story of her son and a rescued Golden Retriever who thru-hiked the A.T. in 2013. Copper tells the story with his dry humor, raw emotions and penchant for honesty.
Karen has always loved nature but got up close and personal with the great outdoors when she and her husband took a 2-1/2 month cross country family camping trip from Georgia to Alaska with their 6 year old daughter and 9 year old son. After that trip, she was hooked. The family continued the camping and hiking adventures each summer and reveled in the family time together and beauty of living in the great outdoors.
As the children got older and moved on to college, the outdoor adventures ceased. That is, until her son, David, announced that he was going to thru-hike the Appalachian Trail with the family dog. David was finishing up his Master’s degree at Georgia Tech and nominated his mom to start getting the dog ready for the hike. As a result, Karen started hiking longer distances. After David started hiking the A.T. with Copper, he invited his mom to join them periodically to enjoy a hike.
Thanks to those invitations, Karen has now hiked a small portion of the A.T. in each of the 14 states except for Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New York. She was even given the trail name of Super Mom by fellow A.T. hikers! She has provided trail magic numerous times and supported her son and other thru-hikers on their treks northward.
Her book, Northbounders: 2,186 Miles of Friendship will be available for purchase at both presentations as well as at the Author Table. Be sure to have your copy signed with a heartfelt inscription for you or someone special!
Nora grew up car camping with her parents and the Girl Scouts, but she abandoned the wild by throwing her life away working incredibly long hours as a patent, trademark, and copyright lawyer. Now that she’s into her “glory years (60+)”, Nora has returned thankfully to the natural world via Trail Dames, but she still practices IP law, too, because Nora has a wonderful daughter to see through college and beyond. Via slide presentation and hands-on samples, Nora will pass on tips, tricks, and advice she learned her first year of getting back into the wild with Trail Dames. Avoid her mistakes–don’t sleep with your Camelbak water bladder even if it’s really sexy (unless you 100% sure it won’t leak); don’t eat reconstituted Chili Mac unless you want a visit from some hungry bears; and don’t challenge the group’s fire diva or you may find yourself in a flame war.
Join Susan "Hammock Hanger" Turner as she shares stories, photos and adventures from hiking in Australia and New Zealand. Hammock Hanger has hiked just about all the long trails on the east coast i.e.: AT, LT, BMT, BT, GET, FL and many smaller trails, too many to mention. Her passion for the long trail adventure has taken her westward to complete the John Muir Trail and dabble with the CDT.
After replacing her worn out knees she started hiking internationally. She traveled to Spain where she completed the Camino de Santiago. And then continued onto trails in the UK such as the Coast to Coast, the St. Cuthbert's & St. Oswalds Ways, Sussex Ridgeway, Ridgeway Trail, Ickneild Trail, Peddars Way and the Norfolk Coast Path.
In 2014 Trail Dames presented her with the well-earned Adventures of the Year Award. For more on her adventures, visit her blog at www.trailjournals.com/HHENGLAND2015
Margaret Webster grew up in Connecticut. She has had a lifelong love of the outdoors, travel, and exploration. As a child, she aspired to be a cross between Jacques Cousteau and Robert Ripley of Ripley’s Believe It or Not. After raising her two sons, she decided to embark on a solo cross-country odyssey that essentially lasted eight years. She had been working in a job that enabled her to work anywhere she could get an Internet connection. She loaded up her pickup truck with her laptop, tent, camping gear, bicycle, and kayak and went in pursuit of adventure and discovery.