It had been around 15 years since I last trekked this mountain. That was my first time and the in ensuing years I know now my memory of the challenge had subsided disproportionately to my memory of the reward.
About 1.2km (about 3/4 mile) into the trek, we (my 12-year-old son and myself) came across “Emergency Helicopter Point 1”. As comforting as it was knowing that plans for our rescue had been made in advance, it was slightly alarming that this could in fact be required. I did particularly notice that it was not simply called “Emergency Helicopter Point” but did in fact have a number assigned to it. There were a further 3 such points up the mountain!
A feature of this trek is that after exerting yourself for almost an hour and half, the final challenge to boldly proclaim you have conquered the mountain is a 300 metre rock scramble to reach the summit. My 15-year-old memory was confident this was shorter and easier than the reality confronting me!
Alas, we reached the summit, rewarding ourselves with fresh fruit and Milo bars from my backpack, knowing that as enticing as the 360 degree views were, we did indeed have to descend at some point, preferably before nightfall and certainly before I became too familiar with an emergency helicopter point!
It was then I saw a sign reminding me of why I should have been better prepared – after all, this was Mount Warning!
LET HOPE RISE