From Addis we headed to Gondar and then to Debark where the trek began with two or three days to acclimatise and get accustomed to the altitude, incredible views from the plateau, and bursts of dry-season rain. Then the days became longer and harder: we climbed Bwahit and finished at a camp high in a river valley. The next morning we were up before dawn to start the ascent which would take us to the top of Ras Dashen, Ethiopia's highest mountain, climbing steeply out of the valley before starting the steady rise to the peak which ended with a short and fun scramble.
'I took a couple of days to appreciate the real showers'
After that we swung around to the north, into a part of the Simiens rarely visited by trekkers, which was lower and hotter and had campsites with stunning views in every direction, before ending up at Adirakay, exhausted and happy. Back in Addis, I took a couple of days to appreciate the real showers, watch some rugby and sort out my kit before setting out again on the journey to the southern border.