She Explores Sent Me Into The 100 Mile Wilderness with a Stranger

Otherwise known as the most intense first friend date I have ever been on.

 Photo By Alexandra Roberts

Photo By Alexandra Roberts

I love the outdoors and spending time with the people I love the most on a mountain or along the coast is where I am truly happiest - so it should come as no surprise that I tend towards adventure with new people as opposed to grabbing a cup of coffee or a beer.  Prior to this multi-date ski trip my most intense friend date was with another woman I met on instagram, Kate, who two years ago I agreed to go on a "run" with after commenting on one of her photos on instagram.  A run mind you, that turned into a ninety minute coastal slog-fest in which i was FREEZING because I was ill-prepared for the windchill (and the post-holing in running shoes).  Two years and a dozen adventures later I'm happy to report Kate is one of my closest friends in Portland.  

 Kate's Photo of me on our first friend date.

Kate's Photo of me on our first friend date.

In January She Explores sent me with Alexandra Roberts into the 100 Mile Wilderness of Maine to embark upon a hut to hut trip with the Appalachian Mountain Club.  Prior to climbing into her car at 6 am on a frigid Wednesday I had only spoken with Alex briefly on the phone.  She was bright-eyed and the contagious energy that radiated from her bright red pants had me feeling far more awake than usual given the hour and the outdoor temperature.

 Photo By Alexandra Roberts

Photo By Alexandra Roberts

  Coming from two different photography backgrounds but with a similar enthusiasm towards the outdoors neither of us had much of an idea what was in store. I claimed the ski in wouldn't take us much more than 90 minutes and that Alex would get a chance to see me in my happiest place - Boy have I never been so wrong about two things in my life!! Three and a half hours after we set off (after many stops for photo opps) and we arrived at the Little Lyford Lodge. I had forgotten how slow fish scale skis are on fresh, cold snow and I felt a tad guilty about how I had so confidently estimated how long the trip would take - a sauna and a few hot toddies later Alex forgave me. : )

 You should definitely read the full article on She Explores, but I wanted a chance to share a few more of my photographs here.  Have you been on an intense or exciting first friend date lately!? I'd love if you shared in the comments below!

The Appalachian Mountain Club was so kind to host us for this trip.  All opinions are my own.