WE DID IT!

WE DID IT!

Date posted: 21 September 2015

"To absent family and friends"

At the start of the year, we decided as a company we were going to try and raise a modest amount of money for Cancer Research UK. We chose cancer research UK for a number of reasons, the main point been that cancer has unfortunately affected everyone at some point in their lives.

With the odds of actually having some form of cancer affecting 1 in 2 people throughout their life, the support, progress and research that CRUK conducts is something as a company we are proud to support and stand behind.

The journey to Scotland was a pleasant one, we all had time to share our ‘training’, climbing tips and get the banter well and truly in motion. We all had some opinions on what the mountain may hold for us, but I can promise you, we were all very, very wrong.

 - The start of the climb, how positive & naive we were.

The start of the climb, and realisation of what we got ourselves in for can be summed up simply by the pictures below.

Unfortunately we were not welcomed with blue open skies and amazing scenic views, instead we ascended through the mist for a lot of our journey, looking back, this was probably a god send for us as we were never fully exposed to the mammoth mountain route that lay ahead.

 

The terrain at the start of Ben Nevis is nothing to be welcomed, it is a harsh and unforgiving introduction into the Scottish highlands and reminded many of us how important our gear & training was. A lot the initial journey was spent scrambling up the side of the mountain, with only our optimism and the chants of “soon it will level out” keeping our spirits up.

Although, the Scottish must have a completely different notion of time, as our guide promised us on numerous occasions that ‘half way’ was only 20 minutes away. Around 2 hours later we finally had chance to have a break, still surrounded in mist by a waterfall.

As you can see below, Nicola & Dan were both in high spirits at the half way point!

 

Once we started up again, we followed a very circular route around the mountain, the fog & mist had well set in at this point and we all were pushing to hopefully break through the cloud at some point. Although we all had very different levels of pace, everyone at the front would wait for the team members at the back to catch up before continuing, this climb was started together, and would finish together.

About 40 minutes from the summit we finally got the views we had been waiting for, and it was well worth the wait. 

 

Unfortunately the nice weather was not to last, the final ascent towards the peak of Ben Nevis was cold, wet and full of more mist. However, we refused to let it dampen our spirits.

A quick Champaign stop at the summit sparked phone calls to loved ones back home to inform them of the amazing achievement we had just completed. Although the view wasn’t perfect, we had completed our task together, and like a real team, enjoyed each other’s joy and satisfaction at climbing up the UK highest peak.

 - The Troops

The race back down was exactly that, the more ‘agile’ members of the group raced ahead and tried to get down the mountain as soon as possible.

This for many of us was the hardest part of the climb, as the effort needed to support yourself down the large rocks was a lot more energy than was needed to get up them. Funnily enough the weather towards the bottom had finally cleared, and we were treated with more amazing views of the highlands. Although a lot of the route felt alien and unfamiliar now that the fog had finally decided to clear.

Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.

 

When we all finally trickled down from the mountain, we used our last remaining energy to hug & high five each other, before cramming into the Ben Nevis Inn for some drinks, and a much needed place to sit down!

 Thank god thats over.

Now we were finally at the bottom, looking back at the huge mountain we have just climbed, it all really started to kick in why we were here.

When we started this journey, we all did it for a number of reasons, but throughout the time we have been working to raise £20,000 for Cancer Research, the reasons behind our hard work have become clear.

Many of us have lost loved ones to cancer, the people we held nearest and closest to our hearts. We tried as sons, daughters, family and friends to support them as they fought their battles, and walked with them every step of the way throughout their journeys.

The endless courage, willpower and bravery that cancer patients endure is quite simply beyond belief.

Within us we all carry a special place in our hearts for our loved ones, the ones that give us strength and determination to face challenges every single day. As a group and individuals, we used the thoughts & memories of loved ones past and present as fuel to achieve our goals, to help push on through the barrier and still smile at the end of it all.

So here’s thanks to everyone who has helped us along the way, sponsors, family, friends and well-wishers, your support is endlessly appreciated and valued. You helped us achieve our goal, and for that we are forever grateful.

Together, we can beat cancer sooner.

 

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