A few months ago, The Hike the World team led a hike for women's empowerment on behalf of The Outdoor Journal Tour and their #wehiketoheal campaign. The mission of We Hike to Heal is to encourage women all over the world to tap into the healing and empowering influences within themselves and the Great Outdoors. It resonated with us because at its core, Hike the World is a company that fosters a strong sense of community and kinship between hikers and shines a light on mental health awareness by using nature as a healthy way to ease anxiety and depression.
We wanted to put together a very special hike for this powerful campaign so we gathered a group of inspiring women (and a handful of men!) to hit the trails. We encouraged group discussions and introspection throughout the hike. We asked questions about self-care, the importance of nature and teaching the future generation to respect the wilderness.
Our "We Hike to Heal" video is a testament to the power of building community on the trails and is an homage to all of the strong, amazing women who support each other every day.
We learned a tremendous amount from every hiker who joined on us on this adventure and we were so blessed by the amount of support and love that we received from all of the attendees. Below are some of the walking thoughts we collected from people willing to share their "We Hike to Heal" stories.
"I'm still very much grieving the loss of my mother, who passed away last June. Anything I can do to feel active, alive and in community with others is healing."
"When we heal ourselves we heal the world. Hiking brings me inner peace and clarity."
"I'm hiking today so that I can stay in the moment. I'm hiking because although it's challenging for me, I love it and it makes me feel good. And I want to make this a priority in my life."
"Since I started hiking just about a year ago my anxiety has lessened and my depression has lifted. Anxiety and depression are not my friends, but they have been by my side on this "journey called life" for as long as I can remember. Hiking with HTW has helped me push through my fears with each mountain I climb and lift my spirits with each summit I reach. They have inspired me to take risks and to overcome my fears. When we face our fears with the encouragement of a supportive group of people, we begin to see our anxieties as challenges to overcome rather than obstacles that prevent us from being fully present in the world. Hike The World provides that support for me. This group has helped me so much in so many ways, which is why I keep coming back! Thank you, Laura and Ryan and all the people I have met over the past eight months for your support and generosity of spirit."
We would like to send a very special thank you to everyone who made this hike possible, including our illustrious film crew, The New Weis Center and our New Jersey Hike the World ambassadors, Erica and Sabrina. To join more Hike the World adventures like this one, make sure you keep checking the events section of our website!