The 35-year-old travelled through Mt Aspiring National Park and snow-capped Black Peak. She trekked, hiked and camped as part of a paid partnership with outdoor clothing firm, Eddie Bauer, on its #WhyIHike campaign, which aims to get people to share their stories around what inspires them to hike.
Her 3.6m followers were able to enjoy the journey with Mandy and her friends as she shared photos on her Instagram page of the four-day trip. She described the terrain at one point as “ice, snow, lush forest canopies and soggy/seemingly bottomless holes of mud and slippery, moss-covered rocks.”
Her travelling companions included Chase Weideman and Ashley and Jenn Streicher, and they were led by Eddie Bauer alpine guide, Melissa Arnot Reid. Mandy praised Melissa as a “patient teacher, whose strength, fortitude and heart serve as the perfect emblem of true leadership,” particularly when Mandy struggled on difficult terrain.
Mandy was honest about the rigours and challenges of the trip and spoke about beating herself up because she felt she was slowing the group down at one point. “On this particular day, we descended three thousand feet, not on any sort of trail, just down the mountainside,” she said. “I kept slipping on the combo of steep terrain and the aforementioned muck. Gradually I felt myself start to tense up and become hesitant with each step, as I was terrified to twist an ankle or plunge down the mountain face first.”
The “This Is Us” actor explained that she enjoys hiking as it gives her the opportunity for grounding, connection and recalibration. “There are oh so many metaphors for the challenges and discomfort that one may face on the trail that can be applied to life in a general sense,” she explained. “It can also be a time of quiet reflection, a time to drink in every frame of new terrain, to stand in wonder at the sheer beauty and magnitude of this planet…. it’s truly endless.”
You can see all of the images from Mandy Moore’s #WhyIHike trip on her Instagram page here.