These Moms are Pretty Rad

We asked and you answered: what makes your mom rad? Turns out, there are some pretty badass baby mamas out there moving mountains, pursuing adventure, and inspiring us all to reach for the stars. Read on for some of our favorite submissions from the “Salute to Rad Moms” Wild Rye Mother’s Day Sweepstakes. All submissions were entered for the chance to to win a Mauna Kea base layer top and bottom from Wild Rye—designed for women, by women.


Salute to Mary “My Mom raised me and my sisters to believe we could do anything. She raised us as a single mom, and was taken from me by early onset Alzheimer’s beginning when I was just fifteen. In the span of those short years however she taught me how to ski, bike, play tennis, canoe, swim, drive a boat, waterski, build campfires, chop wood, use a chainsaw, bake amazing desserts, sew clothes, and love unconditionally. She let me run wild, climbing the tallest trees, braving the biggest waves, and if she ever worried about my safety she certainly never burdened me with it. I was the last daughter left at home when she began to get sick, but she never once wavered from her mantra that it was wrong to hold on to your child and prevent them from growing. She set me free. Miss you Mom. The photo shows me and my sister on the right, trying to recreate a photo of my Mom and her sister. This is her on the left in the old photo, skiing on Hollyburn Mountain, in the days before there were lifts and a ski resort, and you earned your runs by hiking up them.” – Julia



Salute to Eileen “My mom has been a ski bum at heart (while also killing it professionally running her own business on chiropractic and holistic medicine). She lives outside of Aspen, CO and skis 50+ days in the winter including about a third to half those days hiking and skiing Highlands Bowl. I don’t know any more of a badass mom who crushes it on the slopes (she WILL best you down the bowl or any double black run), runs a successful business, and is the most caring and loving person I know. My true role model.” – Genevieve



Salute to Doris “She taught my siblings and me how to ski, water and snow, always was excited to try new activities, always up for an adventure. She had me on snow skis at age 2 and I have never looked back.” – Jake



Salute to Sharon “Mom brought me to the Dallas Skiing Expo where I saw my first Warren Miller film. She said you need to watch this! Her whole life she has been skiing, now she is able to share her passion for skiing with more people as she has left Dallas and moved to Lake Tahoe to be a skiing instructor. I think she is rad because she is passionate about people, and loves being part of their journey through the snow.” – Gtrecordings



Salute to Rae-Lyn “My mom started skiing 3 years ago when we rented a place for a season on Mount Washington. She wanted to be able to ski with me and my brother forever so every season she takes lessons for the 1st 5-10 weeks of the ski season. She LOVES skiing. It makes her smile. She loves her new life. This year she took me to Whistler and skied everything I asked. Spankys, Helter Skelter, the Diamond Bowl, she even took me into the Blackcomb Ice Cave. I had so much fun... and so did she. My dad was super stoked and proud of her too! She rocked it! My mom is awesome. This year she is running the fundraising for the disability program on the mountain. She is teaching us to give back and its pretty cool. This is what makes my mom rad!” – Beanstress1



Salute to Sue “My mom is a force of nature. She bikes! She hikes! She skis! She's written grants that have awarded over $2.5 million to organizations that support refugees, LGBTQ+ programming, student scholarships, youth arts programs, financial literacy, sustainability education, and more! She’s also an amazing mother, wife, and daughter, whose dance moves and wicked sense of humor never fail to light up a room. She also has a Queen of the Mountain title in the Seychelles that she doesn’t plan on losing any time soon.” – Izzie



Salute to Cathy “What makes my mom rad is that she’s my superhero. After graduating high school she moved to Sun Valley, ID in the mid-seventies for a year and then went south to Jackson Hole to live the ski bum life for the next 3 years in the Mecca of American extreme skiing. Working several jobs, including the Mangy Moose, to pay for rent, a season pass and peanut butter. After she and my father learned she was pregnant they made the family decision to head back to the northwest to get “real jobs” and have a more stable income to support my sister and I. We couldn’t afford much outside of the basic necessities of life. The basic necessities included weekends and breaks at our local ski hill learning the art of skiing, family and life. As a single mother my mom realized when my sister and I were young that she wanted more for her children. While working time and a half at her job she also went to night school for several years to become a Pediatric RN. She made it through school and is now getting ready to retire from a long career as a Peds nurse. The opportunities provided to me from her sacrifice and dedication have been plentiful. I know there’s hope in the face of adversity. I know nothing is set in stone in life. You make the most of every opportunity and enjoy it as much as you can. You love and show that love. Despite all those hours between work and school when I was younger I don’t recall ever thinking my mom didn’t spend enough time with us or that we were second in line for importance. I always felt loved. Still do. I started this thinking how awesome my mother was because of how she lived the ski bum life and she showed me what skiing was about. The truth is, when I write about her sacrifice, love and perseverance I realize that’s what is awesome about her. We have a showing of the newest WM film every fall at our small local theater. My mom and I (and others now too) go every year although I’m starting to think she just goes for the free pens. It’s our favorite event every fall and something that I will hold close for all time. I ski 40+ days a year every year. I’ve had many incredible powder days, backcountry days and bar songs. I chose this picture because it is from my favorite day ever. It took place on the mighty 300ft magic carpet. It’s my 2 1/2 year old son James skiing with his grandma. The love continues.” – Colin



Salute to Norma “Skis 100+ days at Whistler every year - laps on Saudan Couloire and Bushrat take 35min - loves skinning to do laps in DOA Husume BodyBag (in. Photo) as part of the ski school she spends 25 days with clients showing them how to enjoy the resort and when I was 17 she and Dad brought me to Whistler and decided to stay.” - snailham1920



Salute to Brenda “She makes me think that the spirit of adventure could be a genetic trait. She encourages me to spend my winters on snow and my summers in the sun. My mom is the most adventurous person I know, and I can’t wait to grow up to be just like her.” – Sarah



Salute to Yvette “She was the original. Long straight wooden skis, 3 pin bindings, leather boots, and red lipstick. Chair lift was optional. Having fun and laughing at every crash was not. Wish she was still here to enjoy the changes! She and my aunts were the original ladies uphill ski team. Mostly because there were so few chair lifts back then! They would load up the car and carry their wooden skis with up the hill and ski down in flimsy leather boots, no doubt laughing each time they crashed. The image makes me smile every time.” – Julie



Salute to Lisa “My mom is very adventurous. She snowboards and skis with me in the winter, and gets lost with me in the summer. She never stops going, she is always super positive and happy. She is the best mom a daughter could ask for. A matter of fact she is way more than my mom. She is my best friend we do everything together!!!” - a.sprgaue532



Salute to Viv “For her 75th birthday last year, we gave her ‘a vacation with us and her grandkids to Chamonix’. She hadn’t skied for 20+ years, has had various surgeries including a hip replacement in the last 10 years, but was first and last off the slopes everyday. She did a black run as her last run of the trip and was truly inspiring to be with for all of us! I hope that I (and our 3 daughters) are still skiing like that at that age!” – Jo



Salute to Stacey  “Stacey’s my mom and she’s got it goin’ on! She gifted me the best gift anyone could give, the love of mountains and skiing. She taught me to ski on her own and instilled the passion. Here’s her at Squaw circa 1978.” – Gekn7572



Salute to Val “My mom is the ultimate badass, but also the ultimate mom. She used to lead an advanced ski group of seniors through all of the fun and technical parts of Bogus Basin; the group is called the Backside Bashers. Now she winters in the Baja and spends each day windsurfing, mountain biking or helping with the conservation of endangered turtles. She is a breast cancer survivor, knits blankets for cancer patients, is an avid bird watcher and previously volunteered at the World Center for Birds of Prey. She visits me twice a year without fail, hikes faster than me, and sends me a box of fall leaves from Idaho (I don't get pretty fall leaves where I live!). She's the best.” – Tiffski2000



Salute to Sherry “My mom grew up in Alaska, and has led an all-round rad life. We spent summers on the Yukon river hunting and fishing, and winters skiing and snowboarding. She's 70 now, and still snowboarding - and still pushing herself. Here's a photo of her sliding a box at Vail!” – akstormrider



Salute to Kathy “Our mom is awesome on and off the slopes. When she isn't teaching us how to ski or ride, she is busy running us to soccer practice, basketball games, music recitals or just doing the daily school carpool. She also makes the best mac and cheese and has a really cool job as a park designer. Mom is the best and we love her.” – Kris



Salute to Melly “My mom can do it all. Not only is she a bad ass skier, windsurfer, mountain biker, and equestrian, she is also the best mom ever. She always knows what to say to make it better and she never stops supporting my brother and I on our dreams. She’s a veterinarian during the week and sends us rad puppy pictures to give us a boost while we’re both off at college. Best mom ever!” – Mattea



Salute to Julie “My mom grew up in a small town in Kansas where women were not celebrated, encouraged to do big things, or to have their voices heard - but this didn't even come close to stopping her. At 21 years old, she moved to a cabin in the middle of the Coloradan wilderness after paying her way through college. She chopped and sold wood for money; learned and cultivated her love for skiing, biking, hiking, and the outdoors; married my dad; and made her way to law school. Now, she is a partner at a law firm, full time mom, LGBTQ* and reproductive justice advocate, and the strongest woman in the outdoors that I know. She has taught my brother and me how to conquer our fears head on (both in the outdoors and indoors), celebrated our successes, talked us through our failures, encouraged us to do bigger and better things, while also ensuring that we're okay just the way we are. She is the greatest mom of all moms and STILL kicks my ass on the mountain!” – Catherine



Salute to Amy “My mom is the best Mom ever! She’s loving, caring, extremely supportive and adventurous!” – Liza


 Tell us what makes your mom rad!