Summiting Mount Roraima

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This morning I completed the final stretch of the six day Mount Roraima trek in Gran Sabana, Venezuela.

Setting off at 6am, I walked the final three hours alone, enjoying the cool air before the sun rose full beam. With my back to Roraima I walked away from one of the biggest challenges I’ve faced.

Roraima hit me hard physically and mentally. The day before the trek I walked with the group to a waterfall around an hour and a half from our camp in San Francisco. I wore my fairly new walking boots. I set out with nice feet and returned with the mother of all blisters on my left foot. It was disgusting and painful as hell. The guides attacked me with scissors and oxygen water and cotton wool.

How was I going to summit Roraima with a foot like this?

Day one I set off in the walking boots, feet wrapped in Compeed and tape. I made it maybe ten minutes before I could do no more in those boots. I had to switch to socks with sandals, German tourist style, and walked like this the first two days of the trek. First day was long and tough going, the sun beating down, bags packed full with food and tents.

The third day we summited Roraima from the base camp, climbing the whole way up in the rain. The fourth day was spent atop the ethereal tabletop mountain, exploring its quartz valleys, black towering rocks, cliffs that plunged eerily into the clouds. The plant life was interesting too; blasts of colour in between a monotone landscape.

Day five was long and the worst on the feet. By now I’d switched back to boots, but we walked so far, from the summit down to Rio Tek, that my feet swelled up hugely.

And today after a solo trek across the hillside we’re now in Santa Elena for a night, resting our weary legs. Our reward for completing the trek was an all you can eat BBQ in Brazil at lunchtime, and it was the driving force for this last day!

May not get internet now until around early May, but check back for the possibility of more photos!

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