Back in October 2003, my friend Marcela and I were sitting in a restaurant having lunch ahead of our graduation ceremony to receive our MBAs. After a tough couple of years of part-time studies with full-time jobs, we suddenly found ourselves with spare time on our hands. Somehow, discussions turned to hiking. Not just any old hike, but we decided we were going to start at Charlotte’s Pass, cross the Snowy River, then climb Mt. Kosciuszko, the highest mountain in Australia. If you’ve read Part 1 of “Exploring the World With Levison Wood” you will remember I mentioned that I hated walking as a child. Perhaps it was the excitement of graduating, or maybe Marcela spiked my drink at lunch, but the idea seemed like a great thrill. Over the next few weeks, we agreed on doing the climb the following April.
When the day came, we were excited. We had packed a first aid kit, water, food, hat, sunscreen – the bare essentials for a day hike. What I hadn’t counted on, and this was the worst rookie mistake, was that I had worn old hiking boots that I had assumed were the most suitable for the kind of terrain we would be walking on. After all, these were the same boots that I had hiked the Grand Canyon in, so surely they would be perfect for another hike?