Ben Nevis – 1343m
Scafell Pike – 978m
Snowdon – 1085m
Total ascent: 9700 feet/2957m
Total distance: 26 miles
Total duration: 24 hour target
I joined The Shred Centre team in May and by June, we had already set ourselves a challenge, a big challenge! The National 3 peaks challenge to be precise. We decided that we would complete this challenge in aid of a worthwhile, local charity. As a local business we were keen to support a local charity that supports local people in our area. Durham County Carers was our chosen Charity and they were delighted that we had decided to support and raise money for them.
Now the fun started, the training and fundraising! Let’s just say, the fundraising went a little bit better than the training! We set up a just giving page, allowing people to donate online and we also worked with Durham County Carers, supporting them on an information stand and selling second hand books in our local supermarket. It was great to be able to interact with the public to help DCCS sign up new carers and therefore helping the local community. It was nice knowing that there were so many people in the local area, supporting us and spurring us on!
13th September 2014 – The day had arrived and it came quicker than we expected!
05:30am – We make our way to the mini bus, which will be our home for the next 24 hours!
- Start / Finish: Glen Nevis YHA
- Ascent: 4350 feet
- Target time: Ascent: 2.5 – 3 hour / Descent: 2 – 2.5 hours
1:30pm – We arrive in Scotland and make our way to our first mountain, Ben Nevis, which will later become our enemy! With our bags packed, water bottles filled, it was time to make our way up to the peak of Ben Nevis. It is warm and muggy but we are full of energy and positivity; we are ready for this. We finally reach the half way point, which seemed to be never ending and extremely tiring! Reality has hit us as to just hard this challenge is going to be but we will get each other through it. Maybe we should have prepared ourselves a little more with a little more training… isn’t hindsight and wonderful thing. We are half way up Ben Nevis and we can’t turn around now. We carry on and finally make it to the top. The views were just spectacular and it made the walk and struggle all the more worthwhile. We need to complete the challenge in 24 hours, which means no time to stop and take a rest and it was straight back down. Going down Ben Nevis was a little tricky but we did it! 7 hours passed and we made it back to the mini bus. Feet, knees and legs tired, aching and sore but we made it! We drive to the second peak…
- Start Point: Wasdale NT Campsite
- Distance: From Wasdale 7.5km
- Total ascent: 906 metres
- Via Wasdale : Ascent: 2 hours / Descent: 1.5 hours
1:00am – We make it to Scarfell pike. Tired and worn out from the long drive and lack of sleep. We get our bags out ready, head torches on and we set off to climb the highest mountain in England but the smallest out of the 3. Scarfell Pike is located in a commanding position in the Central Lakeland Fells and stands at 978metres / 3209 ft with superb 360 degree views. Unfortunately with it being 3:30am and pitch black when we reached the summit, we were not awarded with these views. As part of our training, we climbed Scarfell Pike during the day but walking in the dark was a different story.
4:30am – The team make it back to the mini bus, completely worn out and broken. However, spirits are a little higher, as we know we will be making our way to the last mountain, meaning we are more than half way through our challenge. The dreaded drive to Wales is going to be a killer! It’s good job we are all tired and just want to sleep. We set off for the 4 hour and 37 minute drive to Snowdon.
Start / Finish: Pen-y-Pass or Llanberis
Ascent: 2381 feet via Pen-y-Pass
Target time: Ascent: 2 hours / Descent: 2 hours
Snowdon, the highest mountain in Wales, is 3,560 feet high, and is by far the easiest of the 3 peaks. Located in Snowdonia National Park, Snowdon is the highest mountain south of the Scottish Highland and is probably the busiest mountain in Britain.
1:00pm – We have made it Snowdon! This is it, we have nearly completed our challenge. The walk up to the top of Snowdon was hard, as our bodies were aching, tired and so sore but we had to soldier on. We reach the top, welcomed by freezing cold winds but we didn’t care, we had made it! The walk down from Snowdon was the worst, as it seemed to be never ending and as we reached each corner, we hoped it would be the end but it wasn’t. Walking back, lost in our own thoughts, we are dragging our feet along to the finish line… And there it is, the finish line, the line that seemed like it would never be seen, there it was! Then it was a quick dash to the local pub to celebrate our hard work. After all, we did deserve it! We are all happy and full of smiles, our feet and legs on the other hand, they were broken! Now we have to look forward to the long drive back home, BUT, this time it was the drive home. Our feet and body longed for a hot soak in a bubble bath!
We made it! We completed the 3 peaks challenge in under 24 hours, with 15 minutes to spare and the best part is, we managed to raise over a £1,100 for a local charity. The work that Durham County Carers Support do and the exceptional service they provide to the local community, really did help us get through the challenge. An amazing achievement for all of us. The pain, sore feet, legs and tiredness was all worth it!
The Shred Centre’s 3 Peaks Challenge 2014 completed – 13th to 14th September 2014.
We are now looking at our next challenge for 2015 – Bring it on!
Have a great week everyone J
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