Winged ad­ven­ture is a soar­ing suc­cess

Pilbara News - - Pilbara News - Re­becca Par­ish

Hed­land man Adrian McRae has re­alised a long-over­due dream, lead­ing a group of ad­ven­tur­ers over the edge of Africa’s Mt Kil­i­man­jaro.

Mr McRae and most of his Wings of Kil­i­man­jaro group launched from the sum­mit of the moun­tain, about 5900m high, late last month, paraglid­ing to the bot­tom in an un­for­get­table ex­pe­ri­ence.

The mis­sion was all in the name of char­ity, and fol­lows a long jour­ney for the Pil­bara con­struc­tion boss, who ini­tially led a group of close to 200 peo­ple up the moun­tain in 2013.

Dur­ing the in­au­gu­ral event, tim­ing and weather hin­dered the trip, and all par­tic­i­pants de­scended the moun­tain on foot.

How­ever, this time around, after two tri­als with a small team, Mr McRae was con­vinced ev­ery­thing would come to­gether.

“Four­teen peo­ple flew from Mt Kil­i­man­jaro,” he said. “But eight peo­ple did not fly.” It was a bit­ter­sweet mo­ment for Mr McRae, as a hand­ful of par­tic­i­pants missed their win­dow of op­por­tu­nity to fly, in­clud­ing two of his Pil­bara com­pan­ions.

“I was dis­ap­pointed for them,” he said. “For me, I don’t get plea­sure out of do­ing some­thing un­less ev­ery­one gets the same joy.”

Hed­land cou­ple Damien Ste­wart and Raechel Mor­ris raised thou­sands of dol­lars for their trip but, to­gether with their tan­dem pi­lots, they missed out on flying off the moun­tain.

Dampier woman Ali­son Arm­strong was among those who did fly off the moun­tain, and Mr McRae said for many it was an emo­tional jour­ney.

More than $125,000 was raised for char­ity as part of the event, with par­tic­i­pants vis­it­ing a Maa­sai vil­lage at the end of the trip to see vil­lagers get­ting ac­cess to clean tap wa­ter for the first time.

Mr McRae said while in hind­sight there was re­gret and sad­ness in wish­ing that all of the trekkers could have been able to paraglide off Mt Kil­i­man­jaro, he said it was all brought into per­spec­tive by hav­ing brought clean wa­ter to peo­ple who pre­vi­ously did not have ready ac­cess to it.

Pic­tures: Wings of Kil­i­man­jaro Face­book page.

Wings of Kil­i­man­jaro ad­ven­tur­ers raised money to pro­vide clean drink­ing wa­ter to Maa­sai com­mu­ni­ties.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.