Last spring Kitale Wilson embarked on a grand adventure, pedalling inland from the southern NSW coast to the Snowy Mountains. Once here, he shed rubber for skis and summited all of Australia’s 10-highest peaks.



Immersed in the Snowy Mountains – Kitalé Describes the Experience

Cables groan as the steel structure sways, shaking loose the early morning frost. Shards of ice fall into the sweeping Snowy River below; its roar marks the coming of spring. I precariously cross the swing-bridge, the weight of my pack and skis threatening to throw me off balance. Reaching the other side, I toss my cargo before descending the ladder to the snow below.

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I take a seat in the snow and begin adjusting my ski-boots. We’ve got some altitude to climb today and with packs full of backcountry gear, supplies and production equipment, I’m bracing for a long one. Casting my eyes across the river I catch Henry Smith, the cinematographer for our project, tip-toeing his way across, skis in one hand and tripod in the other. He makes it across, and before long we have gained the ridge. 



The rest of the day swirls into skin trails and switch-backs. The late-season pack makes for fast moving, and in the early afternoon we begin to approach the saddle we’d hoped to set camp at for the evening. 

Prior to reaching the Snowy Mountains, I’d pedalled my vintage canary yellow bicycle – with skis strapped to its frame – from the coast inland, across the Great Dividing Range and Monaro. Finding myself amongst the Snow gums is a surreal experience, but now our aim is to summit Australia’s 10-highest peaks


We make camp, lighten our packs to the bare essentials and spend the afternoon skiing a few lines in the area. As the peak’s shadows grow and the snow hardens, we settle in our camp, cook dinner, and watch as the sun dips below the horizon.

The alarm sounds early the next morning, followed by painful murmurs as feet squeeze into cold boots. A dawn glow disrupts the dark sky, as we pack our lives onto our shoulders and begin clipping into our skis. The sun peaks over the horizon, bathing the landscape in brilliant hues. We reach the summit of Mount Twynam – the first of the ten peaks – and let the early morning light thaw us out. 

Gazing to the south, my eye tracks the cluster of peaks we hope to summit, coming to rest on a prominent snow-covered dome in the centre – Mount Kosciuszko. As Australia’s highest peak, the mountain represents the major objective of the journey. Henry and I take in the vista in front of us, the day is crisp and the sky is clear. We tighten our boots, clip into our bindings and begin the final push.

Henry Smith

Photos by @kitalewilson