Karens not slowing down anytime soon - Outward Bound

Karens not slowing down anytime soon

Life after OB

Karen Tills, Rutherford 509, took on an Outward Bound Masters course for her 50th birthday. Now she’s turning 60 and is heading to the high and remote Himalayan valleys.

Karen was a walker at the beginning of her Outward Bound course, but she came out running at the other end.

That was 10 years ago and the adventure has spurred Karen into undertaking challenging tramping expeditions and marathon runs every since. Her next adventure and biggest challenge yet is heading to the distant region of Dolpo in Nepal to trek for 22 days, in celebration of turning 60 years old.

Karen's new outlook on life all started with the Outward Bound course in Anakiwa where she swam before sunrise, climbed rock faces blindfolded, balanced on high ropes and spent three nights out in the bush alone. The experience changed her and motivated many aspects of her life.

As a direct result of going to Outward Bound, I have pushed myself to do things I wouldn't normally have done. It made me realise I could do a lot more than I thought I could.

"I also became was less of a procrastinator, more chilled, more accepting, more aware of conservation and more appreciative," she says.

Karen tills

Her daughter (who had also completed an Outward Bound course) talked her into it. Since then Karen has completed the Sydney Morning Herald Half Marathon, The Goat Ruapehu adventure run, Miner's Trial, Motatapu marathon, most of New Zealand's great walks and recently passes Harmen, Whitehorn and Browning, a traverse across the Southern Alps.

She has slowed down a little, but her idea of going for a walk is usually a five or six hour bush hike.

In October, Karen and husband Michael will join a group from the Hamilton Tramping Club (Karen and Michael moved to Tauranga two years ago) destined for Nepal. The tour is guided by sherpas and they tramp up to 5600 metres. The area is described as one of the world's hidden wonders and the main highlight of Dolpa trekking includes Shey Phoksundo National Park, one of the major national parks of Nepal.

She thanks Outward Bound "for sowing the seeds in my mind of what I can achieve".


For Ages 25+

Duration 21 days

The complete Outward Bound adventure for adults. A perfect catalyst for shaking life up and making a change.

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