Teachers: Lauren Fleshman, Julia Hanlon

Camp Director: Zoë Roy

This Wilder Running and Writing Retreat for Women utilizes running, wild writing, storytelling, yoga, coaching, and the beauty of the outdoors to inspire creative and physical courage. We aim to stretch ourselves with the help of teachers, learn from the work of other women, and fill ourselves up with fresh air, big trees, dramatic landscapes, rushing water, good food, laughter, and a mixture of community and solitude. A wilder approach to running and writing will help fuel confidence and purpose in the work we do at home for ourselves and our community.

Get a feel for the retreat below, and for more photos check our Facebook page.

GALLERY OF PAST RETREATs + New Lake creek venue


Lake Creek Lodge

Camp Sherman, Oregon

Lake Creek Lodge is located in the Metolius River Basin in Camp Sherman. Camp Sherman is believed to be the first tourist destination in Oregon as a vacation spot for early 1900’s wheat farmers taking a break from the dry heat to fish and camp along the cool river. Today it is a tight knit community, nestled against the playground of the Cascade Mountain Range, 3000 feet above sea level, with Black Butte calling to be climbed and forest and river trails waiting to be run. The 80 acres of Lake Creek Lodge have a rich history, including past ownership and leadership by strong women who left their mark in writing and education in the community. It is the home of relaxing summer vacations where many families go year after year, and the site of beautiful weddings. Features include 15 shared classic wood cabins, a winding creek and trails that feed into the cold and clear Metolius River, a fishing pond, swimming pool, communal fire pit, common space for writing and recreation, a dining room, tall trees, soft grass and plenty of nature to enjoy together or alone.


The retreat will officially begin Friday afternoon, September 20th. Saturday and Sunday will be very full days from sunup to sundown. The retreat will conclude with a half day on Monday, September 23rd. The detailed schedule will be released to accepted applicants in plenty of time to plan travel.


This is a women's retreat for runners who write and writers who run, capped at around 40-45 participants. We use an inclusive definition of “woman” and “female” and we welcome trans women, genderqueer women, and non-binary people who are significantly female-identified. 


you will be physically able to run up to 8 miles, three days in a row, pace isn’t important

you are interested in an immersive experience with very full days, mixing action, ease, togetherness, and solitude

you are excited to dive into the empty page with an open mind, and create

you like the idea of contributing to a collective experience

you value discomfort and joy as pathways for learning and growing

you believe you never “grow up” but are always “growing up"

you enjoy exploring the outdoors in a variety of weather conditions

you love good nourishing food, fresh air, adventure, and the company of amazing women

you love the outdoors and exploring

you are comfortable in the humble accommodations of pacific northwest cabin lovers

you can take responsibility for yourself and the things that may come up for you in this work


you don't like to run

you have an inflexible training program that doesn't allow you to participate with the flow of the retreat

you don't like the idea of working in groups

you are primarily interested in publishing advice, or crafting finished pieces in a particular genre

what you really want is a four-day vacation to explore Bend or Sisters on your own, stay in a luxury hotel, and get lots of spa treatments (which we highly recommend on a future trip)

COST: $1900-$2100

Price varies based on lodging options (included in cost).

*There will be two scholarships available to cover a significant portion of lodging and retreat costs. Preference will be given to people working in social justice, and recent graduates pursuing a future where this work is particularly important. The scholarship application is included within the retreat application below. Please do not apply for a scholarship unless you would not be able to attend without itotherwise those who do need it are likely to get overlooked in the applicant pool. Please be specific about the level of support you would need.



We will use running in different ways, for different purposes. All paces and experience levels will be respected and encouraged. We'll experience beautiful, scenic trail runs in the wilderness, with footing ranging from smooth to technical. One day will include a more formally coached workout by Lauren Fleshman, with instruction on technique, mental strength, and functional core strength. Over the course of the weekend, each guest will also have an opportunity for one-on-one advice if desired.


We will explore writing as a practice, and how our writing is influenced by the other elements of the retreat experience. There will be full group sessions, smaller breakout groups, independent writing and reading time, and the opportunity for individual guidance with Lauren Fleshman on the work you're doing at the retreat. The emphasis will be on Wild Writing, writing for potency, writing truthfully about our lives, and removing the barriers that get in the way of our most powerful work. When we show up on the page as ourselves, it spills over in surprising and powerful ways. This is a practice that can be taken home with you and used toward many aims.


Lake Creek Lodge is a vacation spot in the Metolius River Basin, established in the early 1900’s. The 15 cabins are peppered alongside the winding creek, with meadows and tall conifers all around. Cabins range from 2-4 beds and are minimalistic, rustic, comfortable, and clean, in synergy with the natural surroundings. In addition to bedrooms, they are equipped with a living area, dining table, 1+ bathroom with shower, and fully appointed kitchen. Wilder will have exclusive use of the Lodge for the retreat, with two different lodging options for participants. Accepted applicants will get to choose between a private room within a shared cabin, or a shared room with more than one bed, on a first come first serve basis, while space lasts. To be clear, each guest will have their own bed.


Private Room in a Shared Cabin

These furnished private rooms each contain a queen bed for one guest. Other furniture in the room varies from cabin to cabin. All participants that reserve this option share common spaces and bathrooms with their cabin mates.




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Shared Room in a Shared Cabin

These furnished rooms each contain two twin beds. Other furniture in the room varies from cabin to cabin. All participants that reserve this option share common spaces and bathrooms with their cabin mates.

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Lake Creek Lodge Map

Cabins 1-15 are the cabins we will be using at Lake Creek Lodge. The other cabins are privately owned and share the outdoor spaces. The Lodge is the primary communal indoor space where we will write and share meals, and we will have exclusive use of this space.

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Lake Creek Lodge will be providing our meals throughout our time together. Meals are served in their historic knotty pine dining room or on the tented creek-side deck. Everything is homemade and fresh. We will work with the chef to create a menu that has vegan and gluten free options at every meal. We can accommodate many specific food requirements, but in more challenging cases we can discuss how you can utilize the private cabin kitchens to meet your needs.


Day 1, Friday: afternoon appetizers and dinner

Day 2, Saturday: breakfast, lunch, and dinner

Day 3, Sunday: breakfast, lunch, and dinner

Day 4, Monday: light breakfast and brunch

*We will also have a variety of snacks available throughout the retreat, and guests are welcome to bring whatever special food items they would like onsite.



Yoga, mindfulness practice, and meditation will be available throughout camp to enhance the experience, led by Julia Hanlon. There will be whole group sessions, optional sessions, and opportunities for individual guidance on how to enhance your home practice.



Transportation to all off-site running adventures will be provided to and from the retreat site. Participants will need to make their own arrangements for transportation to and from airports to Lake Creek Lodge on Friday and Monday. Retreat participants will have the opportunity in advance to arrange shared transportation needs via a private Facebook group they may opt into.



The backyard of the retreat site is the Metolius River Basin, with the wild Metolius just a short walk down the forest trail. There are places to fish, swim, and sit back and watch people and wildlife enjoy the water. We will explore together, and you will have free time to explore on your own.



We’ll welcome you with a few goodies to get you started for the retreat, Picky Bars to fuel you, and a few special things to take home to continue the Wilder practices and spirit.



The retreat does not include travel to and from Lake Creek Lodge from the airport on Friday and Monday.

The Wilder Women's retreat in September is limited in size to 40-45 people. Up to 30% of spots will be selected by the retreat teachers from applicants in their personal communities who they feel will be additive to the overall experience, and 70% of spots will be reserved for the public. We are looking forward to reviewing your application! 


Read Application FAQ’s for tips.

If you have any questions, please contact

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