Women Who Stride: Backpacking in the Paria River Canyon


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A backcountry backpacking webinar for women by women

Register for free and join us September 9th, for this free live info-session with Sunny Stroeer and her former adventure participant Elysia Cook McDermott.

Get ready to venture to a red rock paradise of sandstone carved by the sparkling flow of the Paria River. Your host for this webinar, Sunny Stroeer, leads all-female backpacking trips through this hidden gem of the American Southwest, and in this talk, you’ll learn what it takes to successfully complete your own adventure through such a remote area as the Paria Canyon.

During the one-hour session, Sunny will give you a glimpse of the canyon’s immense beauty which is overflowing with rainbow rock layers and twisting gorges. The intrepid adventuress who embraces its challenge will be rewarded with sensational camping spots, intimate encounters with Native American history, and side trips to seldom-seen mysteries of the canyon.

An advocate of women’s empowerment, Sunny is dedicated to bringing more female athletes into the world of outdoor sports. Also joining will be Elysia, a former participant of all-female Paria Canyon trip, to share her own experience adventuring alongside Sunny. If you’re looking to get your feet wet exploring the remote backcountry, this webinar is designed for those who want to learn, ask questions in a welcoming space and connect with other outdoors women who share the same passion for adventure.



  • Her mission to involve more women in outdoor sports
  • An introduction to the backpacking route, including side trips
  • A short history of the canyon as a travel route for Native Americans and Mormon Pioneers
  • Practical tips for planning your own Paria backpacking adventure
  • How to tackle a trek that requires long stretches of wading
  • A briefing on predicting and addressing the risk of flash floods
  • A section in which a former adventure participant will talk about her Paria experience
  • And of course, stunning photos from the Paria River Canyon


Sunny and Elysia will follow up with a live Q&A session, where you can ask them anything you want to know about backpacking through this geological miracle of the American Southwest.

Get professional advice from a guide and athlete whose mission is to promote female involvement in sports and help others looking to push their boundaries in the outdoors.

After hearing Sunny’s story, you’ll be inspired to put on your backpack and set out on a desert adventure of a lifetime!

Webinar hosts

Sunny Stroeer

Owner of AWExpeditions

Sunny led a career-oriented life as an international strategy consultant with a Harvard MBA until a formative adventure on Aconcagua made her drop everything and take on the outdoors full-time. Before long, her exploits on high-altitude hiking and climbing routes saw her breaking speed records worldwide. When she’s not traveling and setting FKTs left and right, Sunny organizes guided adventures, celebrates the sporting life and promotes female empowerment through her writing and photography.

Elysia Cook McDermott

Passionate hiker

A born-and-bred Californian, Elysia enjoys any activity that requires shoes with grip and plenty of sunscreen. When she’s not wordsmithing copy during work hours, you’ll most likely find her on a trail or a beach. Sometimes not even there, because she’s off scaling peaks in Asia, Africa or South America. But when she’s not gearing up for new adventures beyond her doorstep, Elysia enjoys spending time with her husband and pet tortoise, cooking, painting and picnicking with friends.

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