Over 500 women participated in the 100-year anniversary of the Women’s Dipsea Hike, on April 21. The event celebrated the nation’s first all-women’s cross country race, which took place in 1918. At the time, it was a protest against rules that banned women from participating in competitive distance races.
“There were women and girls of all ages, including the first female winner of the Dipsea, Mary Etta Boitano Blanchard, who won in 1973 as a young girl,” Tam parent Mari Allen, who was a leader of the Dipsea’s Muir Woods Trail Team, said.
The race carries an important message, according to Allen. “I felt so grateful to these women who, despite being told that distance running wasn’t ‘healthy’ for women, proved how competitive and determined women are, and showed that they can do anything they set their minds to.”