“Live your life each day as you would climb a mountain. An occasional glance towards the summit keeps the goal in mind, but many beautiful scenes are to be observed from each new vantage point.”
Harold B. Melchart
I’ve been goal-orientated lately, but I learnt some interesting lessons after climbing Mount Coroora with Team Candy and another family I roped into the challenge, Team Collin.
Mount Coorora looms 432 meters above Pomona, a bucolic little Sunshine Coast hinterland town, about a 30 minute drive from Noosa and the sea.
We’d already visited Pomona in July for the annual King of The Mountain contest, in which about one hundred fit people race up and down Mount Coorora. The winner gets to the top and back in 24 minutes, so I imagined that it would be a pleasant family walk, a peak we could bag in an hour or so.
That was my first mistake.
My second mistake was to attempt it on a Sunday morning after poker night, which meant we were all a bit sleep deprived and, in some cases, rather dehydrated.
Mount Coorora turned out to be much higher, steeper and more challenging than expected. The last stretch is a practically vertical path of rocks you have to scramble up. A few steep staircases have been provided, but for much of it you have to drag yourself up with the ropes provided.
It was a tough climb, even for a fit woman in the prime of her life like me. All the kids struggled at times and the once peaceful slopes of Mount Cooroora were ringing out with cries of:
“I can’t walk any more.”
“I’m too tired.”
“My legs hurt.”
It almost drove me nuts.
My third mistake was to take no food and I compounded that with a fourth mistake – no water.
We all got incredibly hot, thirsty and dirty. Especially Kiara who was crawling up and down the dusty mountainside, and Max who preferred to slide back down on his bum. That’s how the racers must do it. I’m not quite sure exactly, but however they manage to get up and down so fast, I have a new respect for them now.
It was tough going but we persisted, stopping to rest and admire the view when our thighs got too wobbly, and bonding with Team Collin who kindly let us share their water.
The Life Lessons
Mountain climbing, like life, isn’t just about getting to the top and taking a photo to prove you did it. Although that’s a part of it, you also have to make sure you enjoy the climb itself too.
The 8 Secrets of Mountain Climbing and Life
- Plan carefully so you know what you’re getting into.
- Cheer yourselves on, admit it’s hard and congratulate yourself on how well you’re doing.
- Stop to rest often and admire the view along the way.
- Being part of a team of like-minded people can make it more fun.
- If you want to make it to the top you need to persevere.
- If you concentrate on just taking one step after another, you’ll get there in the end,
- The most important thing is to enjoy the process.
- Drink plenty of water.
Let’s focus on enjoying our journey today, and not only on the final destination. Achieving goals is good, but having fun is more important.
Mountain climbing runs in my family. My mountain climbing cousin, Jerry Moffatt, has been referred to as spider man. If you check out his book cover you’ll see why. Here’s his top mountain climbing tip which comes from knowing that, just like in life you may not get a second chance:
“Enjoy the actual ascent… that’s what it’s all about.”
The Pomona and Mount Cooroora Photos
Here are some more photos so you can enjoy the Australia’s Sunshine Coast hinterland experience and relive the pain and glory with us.
The focal point of downtown Pomona
Pomona lawn ornament
A testament to the enterprising nature of Pomona residents
Team Candy and Team Collin at Base Camp
On our way to the top
Team Candy and Team Collin celebrate madly on the peak
Queen and Princess of the Mountain:)
Buena Vista from the top of Mt. Cooroora
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