I started really getting into hiking when I was in my very early 20s, climbing the local mountains of the sunshine coast at the weekends. In 2013, I took an extended holiday in the US and Canada and ticking off a number of good hikes such as Mount Tom in Massachusetts, Rattlesnake Ridge in Seattle, Grouse Mountain and the Grouse Grind in Vancouver, and Runyon Canyon in West Hollywood. I was also able to spend a good amount of time in Denver and Boulder, Colorado, enabling me to hike some of the Rockie's best trails such as Mount Evans and Chautaqua.
Unfortunately, the following year I was diagnosed with Thyroid Cancer and had to take a few months off. 2015 saw me kicking off my hiking career and taking it to a whole new level.
Australian Alpine Academy & Kozi Winter Ascent - CTSS July 2020
In July of this year, I plan to attend CTSS's Australian Alpine Academy in the Snowy Mountains to learn techniques such as winter camping, ice climbing, crevasse travel and rescue, and avalanche awareness, among other things. This will be dependent on whether the COVID-19 restrictions that are currently in place in Australia are lifted and will allow for domestic travel.
Ecuador Volcanoes Expedition - CTSS, November 2020
In November of this year, I was planning to travel to Ecuador with CTSS to climb Cayembe and Cotopaxi, with the possibility of also climbing Chimborazo (condition dependent). This expedition is currently pending, due to the COVID-19 restrictions in place and the international borders of Australia being closed. This expedition may need to be pushed back to next year depending on whether travel restrictions are lifted.
What else do I have planned? There are a few mountains up my sleeve for the next few years, which are as follows -
Mera Peak, Nepal
Mera Peak is a 6000m peak in Nepal's Sagarmatha Zone. A few friends and I are planning on returning to Nepal together to complete Mera Peak. This will likely be in 2021.
Ibn Sina Peak (Lenin Peak), Tajikistan
Lenin Peak is a 7000m peak in the Pamir Mountains, sitting on the border of Tajikistan and Kyrgystan. Due to the height of Lenin Peak and the unpredictable weather, it has a very low success rate, however, is a fantastic mountain to gain winter ascending skills. This expedition will likely take place in July or August 2021.
Mountain Rainier, USA
Either prior to or following Lenin Peak, I would like to climb Mounta Rainier in Washington, USA. Mount Rainier is a 4000m mountain and in the perfect training ground for mountains like Denali and Lenin Peak.
Following Lenin Peak, I would like to try and climb Denali in Alaska. Denali is a 6000m peak, the highest mountain in North America and one of the Seven Summits. Because of where Denali is located geographically, those who climb it say that the conditions on the mountain make it feel more like an 8000m peak.