A group of Halifax teenagers have been talking of their remarkable adventure in Eastern Europe’s highest mountain range.
They told a VIP audience how they had to climb sheer slopes in the poring rain by pulling themselves up on chains… how they had to traverse snowfields and perilous ridge paths… and of sheltering overnight in primitive mountain huts.
The group of 13-19 years old from Mixenden Activity Centre gave a presentation of their Duke of Edinburgh trek to an audience that included the deputy mayor of Calderdale Malcolm James, head of children’s services Stuart Smith and early years intervention manager Carole Stone.
Prior to their 12 day hike across the Tatra mountains, the group held a series of events to raise the £6000 costs and undertook a couple of “practice” rough camping trips to Wales and the Lake District.
They climbed the mountains that divide the Czech Republic and Poland. walking approx 10-12 km per day, across the peaks and ridges via Rysy, the highest point in Poland, staying overnight in mountain huts and covering approx 90 km (55m) all together.
On the way back, they visited Auschwitz and Birkenau former concentration camps and the salt mines of Wieliczka, Krakow.
Two members of the group had never travelled abroad or flown on an aeroplane before.
The expedition was supported by Tatra Plastics Manufacturing, whose factory is in Norwood Green on the Bradford/Halifax border. The company is named after the Tatra Mountains, the birthplace of the company founders, Tom Freud and “Tom” Czerniawski.
PHOTO SHOWS: Back home safe with souvenir from front to back – Kaitlin Irving, Vicky Clarke, Malwina Kramska, Gavin Owens, Luke Roberts and Ryan Kendall.