Ar­borist champ aims high

Auckland City Harbour News - - MILESTONES - TORIKA TOKALAU-CHAN­DRA

Nicky Ward-Allen won her sixth national tree climb­ing ti­tle at Auck­land’s Al­bert Park this month.

The 36-year-old ar­borist, who has been com­pet­ing since 2004, says she is happy with the achieve­ment.

Ward-Allen has al­ways loved trees. Grow­ing up with four brothers, she was al­ways fol­low­ing them around their farm, look­ing for things to do, es­pe­cially their favourite past time climb­ing.

‘‘I was al­ways trail­ing them about on the farm and want­ing to do what they did, like tree climb­ing and tree hut build­ing,’’ WardAllen says.

Dis­cov­er­ing ar­bori­cul­ture as a ca­reer at univer­sity changed her life and in­flu­enced one of her big­gest de­ci­sions.

‘‘I didn’t re­alise ar­bori­cul­ture was a ca­reer un­til I saw an ad­vert for the arb course avail­able in Hamilton at Win­tec. - tree

‘‘With four jobs for ev­ery grad­u­ate, over­seas work read­ily avail­able, and a chance to work out­doors in a job that is both phys­i­cally and men­tally de­mand­ing, I switched from study­ing a BSc to do­ing the Win­tec course.

‘‘Tree climb­ing is an in­dus­try based sport that is a nat­u­ral ex­ten­sion of my job.’’

Ward-Allen now pre­pares for the Asia-Pa­cific Tree Climb­ing Cham­pi­onships in Hong Kong on Novem­ber 26.

PHOTO: SUP­PLIED

Nicky Ward-Allen has al­ways loved climb­ing trees.

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