When a fuller-faced Kate followed in William's footsteps on identical trips to Chile

By Daily Mail Reporter

Teenage traveller: Kate Middleton during her trip to Patagonia in 2001, left, and looking elegant in London this week

Suntanned and a little full-faced, she looks somewhat different from the slender and elegant woman who will walk down the aisle next week.

The picture on the left shows a 19-year-old Kate Middleton unwittingly following in the footsteps of her future husband ten years ago. It was taken in northern Patagonia, Chile, as Kate took part in a Raleigh International adventure.

She and Prince William completed identical ten-week expeditions only months apart during their gap year. The trips brought them tantalisingly close to meeting a year before enrolling at St Andrews University.

William, then 18, joined the project from October to December 2000 after leaving Eton. Kate was studying Italian in Florence after completing A-levels, and took up her £2,650 place with Raleigh in January 2001.

Our picture was taken when Kate and others were helping build the foundations of a fire station in the village of La Tapera, chopping, sawing and hammering wood under a blazing sun.

Her instructor Malcolm Sutherland, who also accompanied William, described her as an ‘impressively strong and hard-working’ teenager who also taught English at a local school because she ‘clearly loved children’.

If she was interested in William, however, she did not show it. Mr Sutherland said that while others asked about the prince’s participation, Kate did not.

Prince William varnishes the outside of the local radio station in the village of Tortel, Southern Chile during his Raleigh International expedition

William, then 18, joined the Raleigh project from October to December 2000 after leaving Eton

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