The Indigenous Histories of AdventurUs Women Retreats and Adventure Trips
Delving into the histories and educating ourselves on the indigenous histories of the lands we recreate upon is essential to being responsible AdventurUs Women.
AdventurUs Women offers transformative experiences for women to recreate and bond in the outdoors. From kayaking to cave exploration to rock climbing, AdventurUs Women facilitates so many life-changing activities for women. But while we recreate together, it’s necessary to look deeper and be critical of our surroundings. What structures allow us to recreate in the first place? How did we as AdventurUs Women arrive on such land? Whose land do we recreate upon? Asking these questions and making an effort to explore the answers is an incredible way to make the outdoors inclusive and just.
Understanding the structure of settler colonialism is essential for outdoors folks. Settler colonialism is the process of systemic displacement of indigenous people from their land in favor of settlers and their colonies. In the United States, settler colonialism means the violent, continuous colonization that bars indigenous sovereignty over land, resources, and culture. So when we recreate, we need to ask ourselves: what specific events of settler colonialism allow me to recreate here? AdventurUs Women has held events located across the settler nation of the United States, including the states of Oregon, Georgia, Colorado, and California. Join us in exploring and honoring the indigenous histories of each of these specific lands and acknowledging the systems that allow us to be there.
Escape to Bend, Oregon Retreat Weekend
The AdventurUs Women Escape Retreat Weekends in Bend, Oregon at LOGE Camp, are located upon the land of the Confederated Tribe of Warm Springs as well as the Siletz and Grand Ronde. The tribe of Warm Springs is comprised of the Paiute, Wascoes, and Warm Springs peoples. Settlers began to arrive in the area known as Bend in 1824 and continued to populate through the city’s incorporation in 1905. The indigenous inhabitants of the land lost access to their customs, gathering and hunting resources, and ancestral connections. Through a series of treaties in 1855 that forced indigenous peoples to relinquish their lands, the Warm Springs Reservation became a portion of land designated for the sole use of the Warm Springs people with no settlers permitted. Pay a visit to the Museum at Warm Springs before your Escape to learn further history and efforts for sovereignty, located right off Highway 26 in the city of Warm Springs. We look forward to returning to LOGE for our Escape in June 2023 and hosting additional adventure experiences in 2023 around Central Oregon.
Women & Whitewater: Glamping Adventure
The upcoming white water rafting trip in May will begin on the lands of the Ikirakutsum Band of the Shasta Nation in a city now known as Ashland, Oregon. The city of Ashland is built over the Shasta village of K’wakhakha of “Where the crow lights.” Before colonization in the early 19th century, nearly 9500 indigenous people lived in the Rogue River region, known as Kohosadi by the Shasta people, including the Chasta and Rogue River peoples. In a series of battles known as the Rogue River War, over 250 indigenous people were murdered, then the remaining were violently relocated to reservations far from their homelands including the Grand Ronde Reservation and the Coast (Siletz) Reservation. Some current efforts to restore sovereignty include the City of Ashland symbolically integrating land acknowledgments into council meetings and the Ashland Forest Resilience Restoration Project which seeks to reinstate indigenous stewardship over Kohosadi by ecological restoration.
After arriving in Ashland, attendees of the whitewater rafting trip will head south into the region of the California Salmon River. 67% of the land within the watershed is the ancestral home of the Karuk people, the remaining land belonging to the Shasta people. Many indigenous people still live along the river, but a majority were forcibly relocated to the Grand Ronde Reservation and the Siletz Reservation. The Siletz Reservation is now home to indigenous people from over 20 million acres of colonized land. Since the relocation, the government has revoked increasing amounts of land from the reservation. A similar tale is true for the Grand Ronde Reservation. Both greater tribes have lost their status as federally recognized, further enforcing the settler colonial structure, but they has since been reinstated.
Escape to Ellijay, Georgia Retreat Weekend
Our 2021 Escape to Georgia was hosted close to Ellijay, Georgia at Mulberry Gap. Ellijay is located on the lands of the ᏣᎳᎫᏪᏘᏱ Tsalaguwetiyi, or East Cherokee, and S’atsoyaha (Yuchi) peoples. Georgia was a prominent setting for both the Trail of Tears in which forcibly removed Cherokee peoples from their ancestral lands in the southeast and the 1830 Indian Removal Act. The Ellijay and Cartecay rivers were important watersheds for the nearly 415 indigenous people living along them in the late 19th century, where they owned small farms and grew corn. Treaties that were put in place to preserve indigenous lands were frequently ignored and exploited for the benefit of white settlers, and eventually, the small communities of Cherokee farmers were relegated to fewer and fewer acres. However, a militia group of Cherokee led by a man named White Path organized to expel settlers and restore the land to its rightful indigenous owners.
Escape to Boulder, Colorado Retreat Weekend
Here we occupy lands that are recognized by treaty as the territories of Indigenous Nations including the Arapaho, Cheyenne, and Ute peoples. Consciously or unconsciously, we currently benefit from the historic and ongoing injustices committed against the Native peoples of this land.
The Arapaho, the main tribe of the Boulder Valley region, call themselves Hinono'eino (“our people”) and refer to their tribe as Hinono'eiteen (Arapahoe Nation). While the Hinóno'éí and Cheyenne tribal headquarters are now in Oklahoma, they continue to relate to Boulder, Colorado as their homeland. The local organization Right Relationship Boulder now welcomes the Hinóno'éí Arapaho) people back to Boulder every year on Indigenous Peoples Day for gathering, celebration, and sharing!
We honor Chief Left Hand (Nawath/Niwot), leader of the last Hinóno'éí band to spend their winters in the Boulder Valley. Many Hinóno'éí people were massacred by the US Cavalry at Sand Creek, Colorado, in 1864. The survivors were forced out of Colorado to reservations in Wyoming and Oklahoma, where most Hinóno'éí live today. Please join us in remembering that Boulder Valley is home to the Hinóno'éí people and to other tribes that camped, hunted, and traded here for centuries. It is also important to remember that Native people of many Indigenous nations live here in Boulder today, and that Native cultures are not simply something of the past!
Whose land do you recreate on? What are their histories? A great place to start your journey to interrogate your adventures is Native Land Digital which allows you to locate your preferred recreational areas on a map. After locating, dive deeper into the indigenous history. Learn about the rightful names, the violence that occurred for settlers to arrive there, the ongoing efforts for indigenous sovereignty. Each of these pieces is necessary to being a responsible recreator, just as important as practicing Leave No Trace and carrying a first aid kit. With sovereignty in mind as we adventure, we make an effort to honor the land and its ancestry and restore the power of the indigenous people to whom it belongs.