It’s a multi climb kind of day!
Week 2 of the school holidays we took our older Mentor participants for an offsite mountain climbing camp at Mount Arapiles, a rock formation that rises about 140 metres above the Wimmera plains.
While top roping, a few participants were very excited to push themselves though another multi-pitch which they had very little experience in. We agreed to do a level 9 climb called “D Major” in the afternoon with our guide and a Cottage leader. Before the participants started they were excited and nervous to begin the climb. After we were refreshed on the instructions we were ready to climb, our climb guide finished our first pitch.
Our first participant began to climb. He started off well but when the foot and hand grips became few and far between that’s when the struggle began. After many head bumps he made it up then Our second participant came up close behind with similar challenges. After our Cottage leader made it up it was time for our second pitch all the way to the summit. We took the climb in the same order as we were tied together by 50 meter ropes.
While our climbing guide was climbing our first participant belayed him well. Then he began his climb. Once he reached the crux it was a major challenge of the climb for all. He managed to slide up a crack though the rock until he found a foot grip, when our second participant reached the crux she struggled and tried her best physically and mentally to get past this challenge but had to accept help, reluctantly. Once we had reached the summit we had a massive feeling of accomplishment and pride in ourselves.
At the summit the view was spectacular, quiet and calming. We enjoyed this view with many laughs and jokes until it was time for our descent. This time our second participant went first. She was very scared but enjoyed the experience. In the middle of our abseil there was a ledge – our final challenge of the day. We managed to walk around the ledge and finally place out feet on the ground for the first time in hours. We believe this was the greatest achievement and our biggest challenge of the camp. We will remember this for the rest of our lives. Who could imagine a better bonding experience for all parties involved?