Up for a climb?
Adventure seekers, come and challenge yourself with a climb up Mount Fuji, Japan.
Kenneth Tham has always kept fit. He not only walks and runs four times a week depending on his work schedule, he also treks at MacRichie Reservoir or Bukit Timah Nature Reserve once a week, and occasionally climbs 47 storeys of a HDB block.
When he heard about the Mount Fuji Corporate Adventure Challenge last year organised by YMCA Singapore, the 68-year-old jumped on the chance to have a go at it again for the second time around. The four-day trip included a fundraising element, where money was donated to the less privileged through the YMCA-Tan Chin Tuan Community Service Programmes.
Adventure hiking/climbing trips are nothing new to the father of one. Previously, he has gone on other adventure hiking trips with YMCA Singapore including six to seven times to Gunung Belumut, Gunung Lambak and Gunung Datuk, all in Malaysia. These trips are included in this year’s YMCA Singapore outdoor and adventure itineraries.
“The Mount Fuji trip was especially memorable as it allowed me to help and contribute to the less fortunate, especially persons with special needs,” said Kenneth. He paid S$4,000 which included the donation, accommodation, food, trekking guides, etc, and an additional S$800 to cover airfare and special insurance that covers high altitude trips.
He shared that going to the summit of Mount Fuji was not very tough if one is fit. “If you are not [fit], you will grumble. It is really doable.”
He added: “I really liked the scenery and the challenge I had to face and the new people I had to face it with.” He recalled a moment before he had to start the climb to the summit at 4am of the kindness of two girls who gave him a cup of coffee that morning, which he needed. As he and the 10 Singapore team members were staying overnight in a mountain cabin that was 3,200m high, getting coffee was not possible and at the wee hour that they had to leave.
If you are up for a challenge, YMCA Singapore is holding another Mount Fuji trip this year on August 30 to September 2, without the fundraising element. Participants pay less than S$900, which excludes the airfare and insurance. The amount includes a physical training session before the trip which entails a stair climb and walking, and a pre-briefing session.
Kenneth shared that he has not yet decided on whether he will climb Mount Fuji a third time around. But whatever he decides, he has already made up his mind on another adventure trip being organised by YMCA Singapore in November to Kumano Nakahechi, a pilgrimage trail in Japan that was once used by ancient priests and emperors.
** For more information on the other trips by YMCA Singapore, go to: www.ymca.org.sg/healthy-living/ymca-outdoor-and-adventure-programmes/.