Early on Sunday 28th November a group of 9 Year 11 students gathered at the airport with Mr (Peter) Hill, Mr (John) Hill and Mrs Hunter (and husband Simon) for the Qualifying Hike for the Gold Duke of Edinburgh. The destination was The Overland Track in Tasmania and excitement levels were high. After a day of preparation and sightseeing in Launceston we boarded the bus to take us to the beginning of the hike – the iconic Cradle Mountain. Sadly one student Daniel and Mr (John) Hill were both injured and did not join us for the epic hike, but did day hikes from Lake St Claire where help was close at hand should it be needed.
Our great God gave us a spectacular starting day, and 7 very keen hikers climbed right up to the summit of Cradle Mountain. The views were breathtaking (so was the climb) and the vastness of God’s creation was on display.
Over the seven days and approximately 70km we saw awe-inspiring craggy peaks, soft mossy ancient forests, powerful thundering waterfalls and beautiful intricate flowers. Some days were long and hard when it took all of my energy to put one foot in front of the other. Some of the boys arrived at every campsite with energy to spare! As well as being a physical journey we took time each morning to reflect on our experiences and relationships and our faith.
Everyone found the hike rewarding and special and we shared what we had learned about ourselves, each other and about God. We were greatly blessed with only one day of rain in our 9 days away. There were a few minor scrapes and bruises, and a lifetime of sore muscles and blisters, but despite this all of the students showed great courage and resilience with no whinging and plenty of examples of helping each other out.
Well done team on a fantastic hike and an unforgettable time in God’s Great Outdoors.