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Nor Cal Mountain Bike League Girls Grit Clinic

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Hi, my name is Heather McFadden and I am in the Marketing department at WTB. Recently I had the privilege to help with the Nor Cal League Girls Grit MTB camp. We had 36 girls come from all over Northern California for an overnight camp on a ranch out in Sonoma county. When I started biking in 2007, I would yell at any girl I would see riding, anywhere,"HEY, want to be my riding buddy?" From across parks, paths, it didn't matter, I would try and make a gal pal group anywhere I rode. These girls are experiencing this from the ages of 12 and up. HOW COOL IS THAT? A community handed to them with this awesome sport. 

So the campers/riders showed up on Saturday morning. They got signed in, grouped up by grade (6th-12th),  and got in their bike gear because they were all so excited to go out and ride. We had all experience levels at the camp and man, these girls can rip! The future of cycling is female, and I couldn't be more stoked. 

 See, color groups, I was team blue! Still am! Go big blue! 

When did you first set up a tent by yourself? Or have you ever? These girls all helped each other and set up their tents by themselves( insert open mouth emoji here). I didn't do that until I was in college, so I was so impressed that these girls 1. knew what they were doing and 2. helped each other without prompting.  Now that is a lesson we should all take away from this.  Help one another. <3This is Hailey Childress, who runs the camps for the NorCal league, she's in her element going over the schedule and activities for the two days.  She is so creative, I think all the girls were passed out snoring at 8:30pm because they were all so tired from such an awesome jam-packed schedule. 

Bauman Ranch, in West Sonoma County, is where the camp was held. Thanks so much to Al and his wife for letting us ride the ranch and have a campout. That was an experience these girls will not forget and neither will I! 

Smiles for miles was a common theme throughout the camp.  

We did skills clinics, group rides, pump track lessons, treasure hunts, scavenger hunts, nutrition talks and and a mental health chat with Ali Tetrick, a Pro road/gravel cyclist! If you don't know her story, learn it, man, she is a beast to overcome such a gnarly TBI and be as strong as she is. A true inspiration for these young riders. 

 See, I wasn't lying.. more smiles for miles. 

And my favorite game, the cookie challenge, and if you ever go camping with me, I will make you play. Very entertaining!!!!  All in all, it was an epic weekend spent with a lot of impressive young ladies. Some overcame fears of tight corners, going down steep hills, or sleeping along in their tent, all in all, I am so grateful to be invited to such an incredible event. Huge shoutout to Vanessa Hauswald for including me and making this happen! She is the OG GOAT! 

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