I do not usually let people down when we've made plans, but when I woke up at 5.30am I didn’t want to go and climb a mountain. However, I had said yes, so off I went to meet the teachers and students. We drove into Slovenia and headed up the mountains until we reached the car park and I looked at it and wondered how you could walk up it as it was so steep. I was told we were going to zig zag, which is why it takes so long. So at 7.30am we began our ascent, I wore my Doctor Marten boots as my hiking boots were sadly in England, and after not long I began to realise the enormity of the task ahead. We ascended quickly meaning the oxygen levels dropped quickly and I realised it was becoming difficult to breathe. I had to keep stopping as I physically couldn’t breathe and it was making me nervous.
After a few hours, I realised this was not going to be easy in the slightest, it was just mud and rocks! It was exhausting! It took a whole 5 hours to walk to the top, I honestly didn’t think we were going to make it and I was shocked when we did. The views were amazing; we were above the clouds, surrounded by mountains. We could see Austria, Italy and Slovenia. It was surreal and I was so pleased I had done it. However then I received the bad news from one of my students: that the descent is harder. I wanted to give up, but there was no way out.
So we began the descent, it was easier to breathe but much worse underfoot. We also went a different way down, which was longer. I kept slipping and I was exhausted. My whole body ached, the others with me (who are used to climbing mountains) agreed that it was horrific and hard work. I kept falling over and my feet were throbbing as I could feel every rock. As we sat down for a rest I began to cry. I just couldn’t understand how we were going to get back, it had already been 8 hours of walking and we had run out of water. Somewhere I found the strength and managed to get down, and we were greeted with the others clapping us, it was 6.30pm and it had taken 11 hours.
Have you ever done mountain climbing? If not would you like to try it?