Anyone who visits Mount Cook can’t help but be moved by the monument to climbers who have died up here. The Kiwi pioneering spirit is legendary; after all, this is the country that gave us Sir Edmund Hillary, who along with his Sherpa guide Tensing Norgay was the first to scale Mount Everest, in May 1953.
The Southern Alps in New Zealand have claimed many lives, but they’re also an alpine paradise for those brave enough to give them a go. Me? After huffing and puffing just to get here from the visitors’ centre, I have renewed admiration for people who push their minds and bodies to such limits - and my girls are completely amazed that some people are actually willing to die doing what they love best.