For many, the new year comes with new hobbies, and we’ve found one that is both locally based + strives to build a better community. Women of The Triangle Hiking Club was founded by Kitty Gayner in May of 2021 when she moved from Ohio to NC. With the intention of finding a few women to go on the occasional hike with, Kitty’s small group quickly turned into a popular organization.
In October, Kitty’s team grew to include a wellness coordinator, a legal consultant, an event coordinator, and a graphic designer, among others. Soon after, the WOTTHC became an organization of over 1,000 members, leading it to become an official club + registered non-profit.
The group manages to host weekly events, hikes + incentivized programs that maintain a focus on including women of every skill level while catering to the social anxieties that come with joining a new community. New hikers can find camaraderie at events through beginner-friendly activities and more experienced members can participate in monthly field trips outside of the Triangle for hikes along the NC mountain trails. Typically hosted around an hour outside of Raleigh, most hikes tend to feature social-mixers + games in order to build community among participants.
While the group will have logged more than 170 miles by the end of the year, eventually the free-to-join organization wishes to include other activities like backpacking trips, outdoor first aid courses, and water sports. Currently, the club is funded solely through donations + run by volunteers.
All women are welcome to join, and if you’re interested in finding upcoming events + more club information you can find it here. Donations to the club can be made here.
Also, check out our hiking guide for more hiking inspiration in the Triangle.
Contributed by Megan Pociask.