Kosciuszko Revisited

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Tuffley, David
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In the field of Applied Ethics, this text recounts the metaphorical journey to the mountains, there to climb the highest peak. It requires physical toughness, but also mental toughness. It reflects the inner journey that all people must take in the course of becoming a wiser person. In the Summer of 2011, my son John and I took the Monaro Highway south from Canberra, heading for Charlotte’s Pass in Kosciuszko National Park. We were there as part of a four-day tour in which John was working up his driving hours to reach the target 100 logged hours. Learner drivers in Queensland at the time were required to do 100 logged hours before doing their driving test. Full of enthusiasm, our plan on the day was to do the 18-kilometre round trip in seven or eight hours. We arrived at Charlotte’s around 9am, and were greatly disappointed to find thick fog, cold wind and icy rain lashing the windows of the car and making it rock. Nearby an organised group of hikers were getting ready to depart. They were fully kitted out with hiking poles and hooded wet weather gear over the top of bulky layers of warm clothing plus rucksack. I couldn’t imagine camping overnight in these conditions. With a seven- or eight-hour hike ahead of us and only summer clothes to keep us warm, we made the only rational decision possible and abandoned the hike. In any case, visibility was down to about 30 metres. Even if we had made it to the summit before hypothermia claimed us, there would have been nothing to see but thick fog. It’s possible the sun would have burned through as the day wore on. Even so, the hike was “no-go”. But we hadn’t come all this way without doing some walking. So, we braved the elements and walked a hundred metres to a nearby look-out. After ten minutes out in that weather, the warm car seemed very inviting. We promised ourselves to return another day and complete the mission. Ten years later in February 2021, we again made our way to Charlotte’s Pass after driving down ...

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Kosciuszko Revisited



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© David Tuffley, 2021. The attached file is reproduced here with permission of the copyright holder.

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Tuffley, D, Kosciuszko Revisited, 2021