Mandy Moore Is Hiking to Mount Everest's Base Camp and It Looks Breathtaking
She's looking at this challenge as one of "physical discomfort, personal challenge, AND fundamental spiritual growth."
Last year, Mandy Moore accomplished a major bucket-list item: climbing to the top of Mount Kilimanjaro. Now, she's embarked on her biggest expedition yet.
In a series of breathtaking photos, the This Is Us actress shared that she's climbed to the base of Mount Everest for the first time.
"I went into this Everest viewing trek relatively blind," she wrote on Instagram. "Not unprepared, mind you...but I wanted to venture forward into the unknown with an open mind and heart and as free of expectations as possible."
Moore was accompanied by alpine guide Melissa Arnot, the first female climber to summit Everest without oxygen. Arnot is one of the most well-known mountaineers in the hiking world: She's summitted the highest peak on Earth a whopping six times, and she's guided the Everest Base Camp trek between 35 and 40 times, Moore wrote in one of her posts. To say the actress is in good hands is an understatement.
Getting to base camp takes a total of 10 days, Moore explained—and it's as challenging as you'd imagine. "It became abundantly clear that this experience was going to be one of physical discomfort, personal challenge, AND fundamental spiritual growth," she wrote. "Sign me up." (Related: This Woman Climbed the Seven Summits and Is Using Her Platform to Empower Young Girls)
Given the intensity of the experience, Moore played it safe when it came to labeling her latest adventure. "We also decided as a group to refer to our trip as an 'Everest viewing trek' in case our plans deviated from the original goal of making it to base camp, placing greater importance on the journey and not the destination," she wrote. (Inspired? Learn How to Plan the Most Epic Adventure Vacation of Your Life)
After more than a week of trekking, Moore and her fellow hikers reached the base of Mount Everest on Sunday, according to People. The actress wrote on Instagram that accomplishing this feat has been "truly beyond my wildest imagination."
"It's impossible to be lucky enough to arrive at the foot of these mammoth peaks and not be attuned to the palpable energy of all of those who came before and lost their lives in these mountains," Moore shared, adding that she feels overwhelmed with "respect, reverence, [and] appreciation" for the experience.
Moore successfully completed her hike, but for some, their adventures have turned deadly. Eleven hikers have died while climbing the mountain, the New York Times reported.
Surprisingly, the danger isn't due to high winds or avalanches, but rather the number of climbers attempting to summit Everest this spring, per The Times. With many climbers taking advantage of the few nice days, and the Nepalese government issuing a record number of hiking permits to help drive tourism, overcrowding on the mountain quickly has become a major issue. Unusual amounts of climbers translates to long lines on the mountain, which means some hikers aren't able to get up and down quickly enough to replenish their oxygen supply.
Now that Moore has reached Mount Everest's base camp, she's had some time to reflect on the experience's meaning to her. "I think I'm slowly learning that I feel most like me when I'm outdoors," she wrote in an Instagram post. "It couldn't be any more outside my every day realm and yet there's something entirely refreshing about being tasked with nothing more than breathing and slowly putting one foot in front of the other." (Related: Mandy Moore Is Embracing Every Change In Her Life)
It's pretty safe to say that climbing Mount Everest (in any capacity) is a big effing deal. The mountain's daunting summit soars so high that trekking to its base camp (17,600 feet) is an epic adventure unto itself. Watching Moore tackle this challenge has been motivating and inspiring from start to finish.