There is a saying that goes something like, “behind every good man is a woman helping him along the way” In my case it is “behind every outdoors woman is a man supporting her crazy ideas.” My husband and I have been together since we were 19 years old. When we first started dating he knew I loved the outdoors, but I am not sure he realized how much I loved it and what a huge part of my background and life it was.
The first summer we were together I took him on our first big adventure, I am not sure he really knew what to expect. We met my parents in Millinocket, Maine and then drove about three hours into the North Maine Woods to Allagash Stream where we paddled five miles down to Allagash Lake to camp for a few days. It was a lot of work, but we explored the lake, went down in the ice caves and climbed to the fire tower on Allagash Mountain. Little did I know that he was hesitant about heights, but he climbed right up the fire tower with me. I was worried it was a little too much for my city boy, originally from Long Island, to handle. In his defense growing up he would frequently visit the White Mountains to camp, kayak and fish, so there was already some outdoors in his genes. I must not have scared him away with my deep woods exploring because that fall he proposed to me beside a waterfall and we have continued our adventures ever since.
We have canoed the Allagash Wilderness Waterway, a 92 mile canoe route in Northern Maine. We have hiked and camped in and around Baxter State Park also in Maine. We have motorcycle camped around New England, Upper State New York and Prince Edward Island. We have hiked and camped around the White Mountains of New Hampshire. I have gotten him into cross country skiing, hunting and basically any other outdoor adventure I want to go on. He has never complained especially when I get him up early on the weekends to check out a new trail or new areas around New England.
He has supported me through my masters degree, getting my Social Work License and anything else I wanted to do. When I was finally where I needed to be for my professional career I had more time for myself, but struggled with my identity as I was used to always working on my professional career. Yes, I work full time, am a wife and a mom, but there was something missing. One night he looked at me and said that I needed to find a hobby. I was getting too cranky and did not have anything that was just for myself that I enjoyed. He had his hunting and various projects. Our daughter had her after school programs and sports, but I didn't have anything that was just for me. We both feel it is important to have something that is just for ourselves. It does not have to be anything big, just something that makes you feel good. That is when I decided to start my Getting Lost Together Website/Blog to share our families outdoor adventures. He continued to support me along the way.
When I decided to apply to become a Hike Like a Woman Ambassador, he was my biggest cheerleader. We even celebrated when I was chosen. He has put up with my multiple photo's to get the "right shot." The countless, "hold on I got to take a picture." Ready to help me explore a new trail. Been my editor and sounding board for my website and blog posts. Helps me review various products. Supportive of me starting a Woman's Hiking Group. Constantly helping me brush up on my outdoor skills. I seriously would not be able to do any of this without him. He has never complained, at least not to my face. So behind this outdoor woman is a man who supports and encourages her every step of the way and I would not have it any other way. He makes me a better outdoor woman. I hope every outdoor woman has a man like mine behind her. If you want to follow his own outdoor adventures, follow him on Instagram at kjo9mm