We awoke early at the Shira camp on day 3 to frozen tents and although the hot water to wash was welcome – what we really needed was that water to be prioritised to provide a caffeine kick up the backside.
It’s a strange feeling sitting in the shadow of the tallest object on a continent – yet not being able to see it!
It was the day before the start of the climb and we were in the hotel just killing time when we started to wonder why, after two days in the country we still had yet to catch even a glimpse of the mountain. The local staff had advised us that the mountain was visible only in the early morning or late evening when the clouds shifted but still…at 5,895m we should be able to see something?!
Our minds play crazy tricks on us sometimes. Sometimes its justified and sometimes it’s not. My biggest fear before we left for walking the Great Wall, was that I would not be able to climb the hills that would enable me to even get on the Wall!! So overcome that I had to do!! But it wasn’t easy. Those master builders of all those years ago had plans to stop anyone getting there.
‘Fail to prepare, prepare to fail”. Isn’t that what they say? Just as well that I love planning. I have three planners – for home, for work and for ‘other things’. All are cross referenced, and all are colour coded. They are a work of art. I am a bit of a control freak to be honest and I hate when something happens that I cannot control.
It all started in a pub – like these things often do. Sitting with a group of work colleagues, we talked about doing something adventurous together, like a trekking challenge, like going on the Great Wall of China.
After scouting around on the internet we came up with, what seemed to be, the best option. An all-in trip to the Wall, walking for 6 days and a visit to Beijing at the end.
So that’s how I found myself sitting at the airport, stomach churning, no idea what was ahead and no idea how I would fare.
This blog started life after an amazing enjoyable trek with a great bunch of people, who started sharing their experiences on facebook posts. After reading their heartfelt words I wanted to share them with others who may be having personal doubts or worries about taking on a life changing challenge. Continue reading