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Uphill battle: Simon Noble and Jezza Williams are working to raise enough money to purchase a gravity quad for Queenstown

By CASS MARRETT

It takes most climbers two months to reach the height of Everest, but Queenstowner Simon Noble plans to do it in just one day.

But he won’t be travelling to Nepal, nor will he need a pick axe and crampons.

Noble plans to reach the height of Everest — 8848 metres — by riding his mountain bike up the Skyline access road 22 times.

‘‘It’ll be just a matter of managing nutrition, hydration and motivation … and then  obviously fatigue after 20-something hours, I guess.’’

He’s calling it the ‘Longest Long Day’ and wants to fundraise about $10,000 for inclusive  tourism provider Making Trax through his Givealittle page.

Making Trax works with New Zealand tourism companies to adapt their offerings so people
living with disabilities can experience adventure tourism to the fullest.

Money raised by Noble’s efforts will go towards purchasing a gravity quad — a four-wheel,
downhill mountain bike with a bucket seat — so people living with disabilities can also ride Queenstown’s famous mountain bike tracks.

‘‘Making Trax is a bit of a close thing to home for me because in January 2017 I had a decent crash and was using a wheelchair for three or four months,’’ Noble says.

He broke his femur, vertebrae, collarbone, had a ‘‘fairly decent’’ concussion and had to learn how to walk again.

But despite those injuries Noble couldn’t wait to get back on his bike.

‘‘I remember one day asking the doctor when I can ride a bike again and they said ‘as soon as you can walk’, the next day I was walking.

‘‘The drive to get out of the wheelchair and onto the bike again was just the pure  enjoyment and the freedom you get from riding a bike,’’ Noble says.

Making Trax founder and self-proclaimed ‘adventure therapy guru’ Jezza Williams couldn’t be more pumped to support Noble.

‘‘You know, there’s something like in NZ 48% of the people with a disability … said that they had poor mental health,’’ Williams says.

‘‘Adventure therapy is massive … you get to go out and do things and feel like you just have no qualms in the world because it’s mindfulness.

‘‘When you’re riding, you’re not thinking about all these crazy things going on in your world.’’

Preparing for the big event which, being held on December 22, this month Noble is riding at between 2000 and 4000 vertical metres every day.

Last month he clocked just over 50,000 vertical metres.

In solidarity Williams, who has limited hand and wrist function, is also putting in the distance.

‘‘I’m a tetraplegic … so for me to push [a wheelchair] is really, really difficult, but I like to stay fit and healthy.

‘‘To support Simon… I do one-and-a-half hours of pushing a day.’’

So far the pair have raised just under $2000.

To donate, visit bit.ly/3lws6nx

cass.marrett@scene.co.nz