Ashleigh, or 'Ash' as she's known around here is originally from Taranaki in the North Island, which she claims is the best province in New Zealand. Many surfers would agree!
Ash has always been an active person growing up around the mountains, lakes, sea, and forest. If you haven't been to 'The Naki' before, it's a picturesque region, characterized by Mt Taranaki, or Mt Egmont, a near-perfect cone-shaped volcano that's around 120,000 years old. From the volcano, lush forest stretches to farmland and eventually to the West Coast, offering outdoor enthusiasts a huge playground to explore.
Ash loves to hike and trail run... Anywhere, anytime! Rain or shine! She also dabbles in a bit of rock climbing, open-water swimming and scuba or free diving. Anything that "gives you a rush and makes you feel alive" she tells us, "I love sports that continue to challenge your abilities. There is nothing I will not try in the outdoors! It's made to be explored."
One of Ash's greatest accomplishments both physically and mentally was completing the Annapurna Circuit in Nepal - "What a feeling standing on the top of the pass! Nothing can beat that serenity and sense of achievement."
Previous to guiding for Active she worked in a Christchurch rehabilitation hospital for 2 years as a physical therapist. Prior to that she was a dance teacher and waitress. In between her varied career, Ash has also found the time to travel through Nepal, India, Sri Lanka and Vietnam. With many more destinations on the bucket list!
'The core of mans' spirit comes from new experiences' - Jon Krakauer
'You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself in any direction you choose. You're on your own. And you know what you know. And you are the guy who'll decide where to go' - Dr Seuss
“Ash always had patience and enthusiasm with our group. Even carrying my backpack for a short time on the climb to Angelus Hut. How she does it, I'll never know. But we were calling her "Wonder Woman" after our 3 day backpacking adventure.” - A. Hollingsworth (Houston, Texas, United States), Rimu March 2018
“Ash was GREAT. She is capable, knowledgeable, so strong, a very delightful soul. She was very patient with our group. She and Astrid had a great relationship. She made sure to spend time with each of us during various hikes. They are a good combination.” - C. Hughes (Glen Ellyn, Illinois, United States), Tui December 2019