jen yu: new zealand 2003 - day 4

new zealand 2003 - day 4

back to nz 2003
[ day 3 | day 5 ]
mountaineering course, single cone, queentown
july 28, 2003
read about the day
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The morning weather brought high clouds and diffuse sunshine. Each day we had been in New Zealand, the forecasters had called for rain and they had been wrong thus far. After breaking camp and stashing our gear, we headed up to Single Cone. Aaron had mentioned climbing this peak the previous day and I felt that it wasn't really necessary for us, especially since I was not feeling as strong as usual due to my cold and the cold weather. Jeremy felt the same way, but Aaron assured us it would be good to do and he was right. My energy began to wane before the last two pitches and I mentioned this to Aaron and he promised the last bit was quick and easy. Again, he was right. Standing on Single Cone, I felt mentally numb, not sure what to do. I was ready to turn around and head back down, but Aaron reminded me that I had a camera and he offered to take a picture of us and then I took a few shots of the surroundings. The views were spectacular! I could kick myself for not getting a picture of Aaron and I'll chalk that up to my cold. He's the kind of fellow you want everyone back home to meet because he is the quintessential kiwi.

Getting back down was the tough part because I was losing energy and feeling colder. Rather than going back down the chute we had climbed on the way up - Aaron gave us the option of rappelling down a cliff (which is called abseiling in New Zealand). Eventually we made it to the car and Aaron had made friends with some other climbers (he is, afterall, an incredibly friendly guy). He drove us back down to Queenstown so we could pick up our stuff. He told me he could tell I was hesitant about Single Cone, but he knew if he pushed a little, I'd be glad. I was glad. I was also losing my voice. Aaron dropped us off at the hotel and we said good-bye with an invitation to visit if he or Bruce ever found their way to California. Once in our room, we exploded our gear to dry out and began to clean ourselves up for dinner at the sushi bar across the street (excellent food). It had been a grand day.

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