This post comes from onboard the ferry vessel Kaitaki on a rainy and gusty evening, while crossing the open water between Wellington and Picton. Despite the pitch and roll of the ship, I am so excited to be here. I have been looking forward to this trip intensely for a long time.
Writing my book was an long process and didn’t grant me opportunity to do much tramping or climbing. While this lack of outdoor activity was hard, the prospect of a trip in July kept me going and gave me purpose. Plans for the trip were formed at the beginning of the year, when I was asked to talk at the New Zealand Mountain Film and Book Festival and the Queenstown Winter Festival. I was excited by the opportunity to talk about Mastering Mountains, its goals, and my climb in India and Nepal, gratefully accepting the offer. While I was down there, I figured I may as well use the opportunity to get in a tramp or climb and started to scheme. I have a deep love of the Alps and the South Island, so this prospect greatly excited me.
And now, today, I am beginning that trip, and I can’t wait.
I am travelling down to Queenstown over the next few days, making a stop to see the awesome people at Macpac Head Office. I will then hang around Queenstown and Wanaka for ten days or so, before meeting up with a friend, Craig, to do some climbing.
Craig and I are hoping to climb some ice around Eyre Peak, south of Lake Wakatipu. If the weather is poor or there is not enough ice, we may head to the West Coast instead. Whatever the case, it will be amazing to get out again, climbing on some challenging terrain.
After climbing with Craig, I will meet Sam Dawson, a trustee of Mastering Mountains, and hopefully get in a few days tramping in Nelson Lakes. In total, it looks like it will be an awesome trip!
Special thanks go to Macpac and MitoQ for their support of this trip. Macpac have given me the amazing Olympus moutaineeting tent to use during this trip. Craig and I intend on camping for a number of days in the snow, which means we need a tent that is warm and able to take a wind/snow loading. The Macpac Olympus does this well, while also providing a decent amount of space, and so will be invaluable during this trip. MitoQ have also been a big supporter. During this trip, I will be heading into some remote locations and I need an Personal Locator Beacon (PLB) to keep safe. MitoQ have generously purchased a PLB for me to use. Knowing that I will be found if I get into trouble gives me a great deal of confidence as I go tramping and climbing. On top of that, MitoQ continues to supply me with a supplement that is key to my continued health.
I hope to write updates every few days, which I will posted to my Twitter and Facebook accounts, and can be viewed these feeds, along with my photos. Keep an eye out for my posts and follow the action!
Mastering Mountains Charitable Trust exists to enrich the lives of people affected by Multiple Sclerosis by helping them get outdoors. Please consider supporting the cause by donating through our Give-a-Little page.