Hiking season is here and we are once again reminded of how blessed we are to have some of the most incredible hikes in the world right on our doorstep. Young local girl Phoebe, daughter of our very own General Manager James C, is taking full advantage of Queenstowns’ extraordinary surroundings on a regular basis. Particularly catching our attention by upping the tempo with her young friends by completing the world famous 3 day Routeburn Track in just 1 day! We just had to catch up with her to see how this inspiring young lady did it…
When and where did your love for nature and mountaineering start?
When I was 9 and I did a Rogaine event in Arrowtown with family and some friends, but even before that I always loved being outside, one of the kids running with a hose naked in the back yard!
Why did you decide to run the Routeburn? What did the challenge mean to you personally?
My Mum suggested it would be a fun thing to do in one day rather than over a few days – she doesn’t like sleeping in the huts! I was so happy at the end because we completed it in 9 and a half hours and I thought that was a good effort.
How long were you training for? How did you prepare for it, and how was that process?
I woke up on Saturday morning and we just did it. On the car ride there I sipped my tea and thought about doing it, that was really the only the preparation. I didn’t train because we only decided the day before that we were going to do it.
What was it like on the day, how was the experience itself?
The weather wasn’t too hot or too cold, and didn’t rain, it was the perfect temperature for me. There were blue skies all around us and we saw a beautiful waterfall on the route. After every cabin, there was a sign that said how long it should take to get to the next cabin, we aimed for between 1 or 2 hours faster than the sign said. We timed ourselves to make sure that we were fast enough, even running the last 5 minutes to get to our goal and we made it every single time!
How did you keep yourself motivated throughout, or how do you keep yourself motivated in general?
My friend Neve is very talkative, she talked the whole way which made it seem faster and more fun rather than being in silence! It was fun because each cabin we got to, we would spell it out with our bodies and take a photo. Fun is the best motivation.
Are your friends and other people your age into the same activities?
Yes, all of my friends are very active and do lots of the sports that I do like Rogaining and Peak to Peak.
What would you say to someone considering the Routeburn?
I would say that it’s better to do it with someone, on your own you could get quite bored, and if you don’t have someone to talk to you can’t really have a great time. There’s a huge range of different areas to enjoy – a waterfall, a mini lake, and heaps of mountains – sometimes it even turned into a rain forest and then widened up into the most beautiful open spaces.
Who inspires you?
My dad inspires me because he does a lot of activities and I wouldn’t do a lot of them if he didn’t always suggest it
The Humpridge for sure. I did the Greenstone-Caples the year before with my dad and a bunch of other girls with their dads which was great to do over a few days.
Well Phoebe, thank you for inspiring us all to take a leaf out of your book soak up the spring delights that our local natural earth has to offer!