On Saturday 22nd June 2019 Robert set off from Machame gate to start his journey trekking Kilimanjaro in memory of Ellie Nicholl and Matthew Topping to raise funds for Ellie’s retreat and Brainwavesni, 2 charities close to his heart.
Matthew Topping was a friend and work colleague. Matthew died suddenly from a brain tumour on the 18th March 2015 at the age of 23. In honour of Matthew my fundraising went towards Brainwaves NI a charity his family is grateful to.
Below is Roberts personal account of his trek:
We started our journey from Machame gate. As we were heading to receive our lunch our guide advised us to put it straight into our day sacks as if we were to set it down the thieving monkeys would sweep in and steal it.
Machame gate was the start of our 7 days and 6 nights on the mountain. The nights were cold with everyone getting colder the higher up the mountain we got. We spent Saturday to Wednesday morning trekking to each camp. Night two was sing night, we had to start off and then all the porters sang the rest of the evening. This was a fantastic evening’s craic had by all and it lifted everyone’s spirits. Wednesday morning we reached Barafu camp, the final camp before the summit.
We got our lunch around 12 noon and then we went straight into the pit to rest and grab whatever sleep we could for Wednesday night’s trek to the summit night. We got called at 21:45pm for dinner and set off for the summit at 22:30. The trek to the summit acquired us to clothe up for winter weather as the temperature that night was round -15 to 16 o’C. We had to pack our day sacks with essentials needed to get us to Uhuru peak and back to Barafu camp. We trekked around 9 and half hours till we reached the summit around 8am. It was a very hard and challenging trek to the top. For the final 400 metres or so I suffered from the altitude sickness badly. At the summit we spent a maximum of 10 to 15 minutes, enough time to get individual and group pictures. The descent back to base camp took around 2 and half hours. We literally skied back down to Barafu camp. Once back at Barafu camp we had around 1 and half hours to freshen up as best as possible and rest before trekking two and half hours to millennium camp which was the final camp of our journey before descending back to Mweka gate.
Friday night at Weru Weru lodge we had a celebration diner and presentation of a certificate and medal from global adventures to acknowledge the amazing achievement we all had achieved. Everyone was proud and overwhelmed by the challenge we had just overcome. I would personally like to thank my Family, Martina the community champion from Tesco’s, friends and local community and businesses for all their amazing help and support with my fundraising efforts
The Challenge of trekking Kilimanjaro with Global adventures Ltd was solely paid for by me so all money raised can go to my chosen charities. I raised an amazing total of £7000 pounds with £3500 going towards Ellie’s Retreat and £3500 towards Brainwavesni. Thank you all for your amazing generosity and support on helping me to achieve a challenge of a lifetime that’s now ticked of my Bucket List.