Transformation on the Trail: A Powerful Experience of The Awakening Man

By Scott Masciarelli

Adventure lies in the excitement of discovery and the exploration of the unknown.

As the eight of us huddled around last night’s smoldering campfire, taking in the peace of a cold, misty morning, our local guide Eddy enthusiastically shouted, “Let’s Go Pumas!” His voice jolting us to our feet, inspiring each of us to start another day of adventure on the trail. We were feeling stronger, clearer and more connected. We could feel the strength and awareness of a puma expanding in each of us. The puma is known for its swiftness, power and ability to manage fear. An animal which represents what we often aspire to be: a strong, self-controlled human courageously moving through life. And it also happens to be one of the three sacred animals (along with the snake and the condor) worshiped by the ancient Incas, as well as the modern Andean people.

Some of us travel to take a break from life, others travel because they have to (i.e., for business), and some travel with an intention to experience adventure and to return home with a shift in perspective. Last year a buddy and I discussed our dreams to create a transformational adventure experience. As both of our work centers around personal development and deep conversations, the idea of taking this platform into an outdoor “classroom,” sounded very appealing to us.

Our vision was to create, not just a retreat or a vacation, but a perspective-shifting adventure which would take us into a region of the world where intellectual expression and spiritual exploration were the norm for hundreds of years. A place with incredible natural beauty where there would be an opportunity for us to learn from local, indigenous people and understand their relationship to life and the Earth.

Dreams do come true. What emerged was “The Awakening Man,” a transformational adventure experience into the sacred, Valley Peru, where eight men explored their power, purpose and potential while hiking their way to one of the 7 Wonders of the Modern World.

This experience was enhanced by our local guide, Eddy, with his expert knowledge of the Andean way of life, Incan beliefs and his deep reverence and respect for the Incan people and their culture.

Throughout the week, there was an ongoing invitation to connect and learn about the significance of the sights and sounds of the Sacred Valley. Eduardo, our Shaman and a descendant of the Quechua people, offered traditional ceremonies to complement our workshops, meditations and conversations. This created a unique and powerful blend of western and indigenous learning.

Adventure lies in the excitement of discovery and the exploration of the unknown. Our trip had all of that and so much more.

The three days we spent on the remote Lares trek provided us a majestic classroom for workshops and deep discussions. The perfection of nature’s balance, solitude and open space inspired and encouraged connection to the self, each other, the land and the local people. Reflecting on the powerful combination, Eddy, our Puma guide shared, “Brothers, this is an amazing experience I will never forget.”

As the week progressed we felt the energy and connectedness to “Pachamama” (Mother Earth). Each of us was enthused by the aliveness we felt and were viewing all with an expanded heart and through the lens of love, appreciation and possibility. It was as if we did put on rose-colored glasses.

I recall looking at a flower thinking, “Was it always that beautiful?” The process of transformation, specifically self-transformation, was deepened in each of us. All participants agreed that The Awakening Man lived up to its name.

At the conclusion, we left not as a group of guys going on a trip but as pumas, the strong animal revered by the Incans. The power of transformational travel is that that the awareness continues long after we have returned home and unpacked our luggage. It has continued for each one of us almost a year later.

Scott Masciarelli met Jonathan Hermida during a coach’s retreat and after few conversations, they soon realized they had a common desire: to combine transformation and travel. Awakened Journeys is the result of two dreams that came together serendipitously on the island of Bali, Indonesia, in 2016. They knew, from their own experiences, that some of the most transformative experiences of their lives took place when they stepped out of the known of their day-to-day worlds and into the unknown of a new culture, environment and experience.

In June, 2018, The Awakening Man 2.0 welcomes both men and women from around the world who are seeking a deeper connection to themselves, the world and each other. It’s an incredible opportunity, which has been timed to coincide with the winter solstice in Peru, one of the most auspicious dates on the Incan calendar. A group of courageous adventure seekers will join together for this opportunity to delve deeply into themselves, connect with their true purpose and shine their light a little brighter in all they do and with everyone they encounter. Become a Puma and learn more about The Awakening Man 2.0 and the transformation possible at

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