I distinctly remember the first time I hiked up a mountain. I was 33 years old and was going through a number of personal challenges at the time. That single day transformed my life.
At first it was just the dirt. I rubbed my hands in it. The light cascading in and around the trees only to land on my face – I noticed the sun next. I closed my eyes and breathed. Climbing up a half-buried boulder, I felt the strength of the mountain below me.
Something changed in me that day. When I passed the tree-line and summited, the world was mine again. I felt whole again.
The feeling of being in nature calmed me, the feeling of conquering that mountain invigorated me, and the camaraderie within our group supported me. I got home that night, lied in bed and knew one thing; I wanted more of this feeling in my life.
So I started climbing whenever and wherever I could. First, it was the United States. Then, I went across the globe. With each mountain I climbed, with each summit I conquered, I learned a little more about myself and slowly rebuilt my life. The mountains were transforming my entire world. But it wasn’t just me…I saw the mountains uplift people all around me. People who were struggling with personal traumas – succumbing to the battlefields of childhood, death, loss, abuse, and even war.
I witnessed the power of the mountains to help people heal. What if we created a way to help people who live in their own personal darkness to see their incredible light, to rediscover their strength, to reimagine their purpose.
You never measure the height of the mountain until you reach the absolute top. I’m still climbing, and that’s why I started the Gladiator Trek Programs.
Founder & CEO – The Explorer’s Passage