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11 December 2019

Trail Magazine‘s Mountains for the Mind Campaign Launches Free Guided Mountain Walks With Mental Health First Aiders in 2020

TRAIL teams up with Black Dog Outdoors to extend the benefits of its national mental health campaign, in association with charity Mind

Trail, the UK’s best-selling hill-walking magazine, is extending the benefits of its mental health campaign, Mountains for the Mind, by teaming up with Black Dog Outdoors to offer free monthly guided mountain walks across the UK, for people experiencing mental health problems.

Trail magazine launched its Mountains for the Mind campaign, in association with mental health charity Mind, in January 2019, to encourage awareness of the benefits of being outdoors. With one in six people in the UK reporting mental health problems to their GP every week, walking has been scientifically proven to be a natural anti-depressant and regular exercise can reduce the risk of depression.

According to experts, a single exposure to nature can promote feelings of wellbeing that last up to seven hours after returning indoors. In those at a higher risk of depression the effects can last even longer. Spending time outdoors can reduce the risk of depression by 30% and regular exercise can, for some, be a more effective treatment than taking anti-depressants. In addition, being active improves sleep quality, while reducing stress and anxiety levels.

Launching in January 2020, there will be 12 free Mountain for the Mind guided monthly walks, taking place in the UK’s most popular hillwalking regions. All will be led by qualified Mountain Leaders and supported by qualified Mental Health First Aiders*.

Commenting on the campaign, Trail Magazine’s Editor, Oli Reed said, “We’ve been delighted with the progress of Mountains of the Mind so far, with more than 10,000 people signing up to support it and campaign messages reaching everyone who loves being outside and understanding the calming, healing power of time spent in the mountains. The natural next step was to put on a regular calendar of free walks for our fast-growing community, so we’re thrilled to be joining forces with Black Dog Outdoors, who are the perfect partners to help us take the campaign to the next level in 2020.” 

Andy Higson, Director of Black Dog Outdoors, who is a qualified Mental Health First Aider and Mountain Leader said, “Black Dog Outdoors was established in 2018 to introduce people to outdoor activities as a means of improving their mental health and wellbeing. Mountains for the Mind is a fantastic initiative that we’re proud to support. There’s a synergy with our own aims and feedback has been heart-warming and humbling on the two walks we’ve organised so far. We can’t wait to keep supporting the Mountains for the Mind community.”  

Mark Anthony Ellison, an ambassador of the national campaign and participant of the Mountains of the Mind 2019 activities said, “When we first came up with the idea to organise the first Mountains for the Mind group walk in the Lake District, it gave me a buzz but also made me nervous. I needn’t have worried. Everyone was so nice and the whole day gave me a real sense of achievement… People think the only therapy you can get is from doctors, but my therapy is in the mountains.”

Read more about Mark’s story and hear from others who have experienced improved mental health since getting involved in the campaign on the hills here.

Places on the Mountains for Mind walks are limited to 40 participants per event.  Bookings are now open for the first walk starting on Saturday 18 January in The Peak District National Park with full details on the campaign’s dedicated website at:  All other walks can be booked one month in advance.  The website also carries key messages, facts, gear advice, inspiration and stories.

Mountains for the Mind 2020 Calendar

Saturday 18th January – Peak District

Saturday 15th February – South Wales

Saturday 14th March – Lake District

Saturday 18th April – North Wales

Saturday 16th/Sunday 17th May – Lake District

Saturday 20th June – Scottish Highlands

Saturday 18th July – North Wales

Saturday 15th August – Northern Ireland

Saturday 19th September – Scottish Highlands

Saturday 17th October – Yorkshire Dales

Saturday 14th November – South Wales

Saturday 12th December – Peak District

Trail magazine aims to inspire and motivate its readers to be a part of the campaign by challenging themselves – or championing someone else who might benefit – to get out and climb a mountain, any mountain.  Those who sign up will be incentivised with offers, engagement opportunities and coverage in the magazine to help them reach their goal as well as celebrating their achievements and helping to cultivate beneficial like-minded social circles.

Brands taking part in the campaign include Bridgedale socks, Berghaus (clothing, rucksacks, packs & boots partner) and Ellis Brigham (retail partner).

Bauer Media UK, publisher of Trail magazine, is a launch partner of Where’s Your Head At? alongside Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) England, the official providers of all mental health first aid training and national mental health activist Natasha Devon MBE.  Launched during Mental Health Awareness Week 2018, the campaign calls for a change in health and safety legislation to put mental and physical first aid on an equal footing.

– ENDS –


For further information and to arrange interviews with spokespeople, please contact:

Susie Asbury – Communications Director, Magazines


M: 07754 758322

About Bauer Media:

Bauer Media Group is one of the world’s most successful media companies. We embrace tradition while still keeping our finger on the pulse. Our people create magazines, digital formats, and radio on four continents. With more than 700 magazines, 400 digital products, and 100+ radio stations, we inform and entertain millions of people every day. Simultaneously, we are shaping tomorrow: with investments in online comparison platforms and other young business models, we are setting the course for a successful future as a global multi-business company.

*About ‘Where’s Your Head At?’:

Bauer Media UK, publisher of Trail magazine, is also partnered with Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) England the official providers of all mental health first aid training and Natasha Devon MBE on the national mental health campaign, Where’s Your Head At? Launched during Mental Health Awareness Week 2018, the campaign is calling for a change in health and safety legislation to put mental and physical first aid on an equal footing. It has garnered support from a host of celebrities and members of the public signing the petition as well as the employers, business leaders and MPs from across the country whom have signed up in support of the ‘Where’s Your Head At?’ Workplace Manifesto.

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