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Acclimatisation over – now for the climb

By Daryl Willcox

23rd June 2014

Ag du Tour summit

On the summit of Aiguille du Tour, Mont Blanc in the background

A year of planning, two months of fitness training and six days of altitude acclimatisation are now over.

Next: the attempt to summit Mont Blanc.

I’ve really enjoyed the acclimatisation with Simon Abrahams, a highly experienced British mountain guide based here in Chamonix, France. He is professional, patient and great company – I couldn’t have asked for a better guide.

Highlights of the acclimatisation have been the ascents of Aiguille du Tour (3,540m) on 20 June and Gran Paradiso (4,061m) on 22 June (links go to helmet-cam videos).

Tomorrow we set off for one of the Alpine huts on the normal route to Mont Blanc. Then, if all things go well, we will head for the summit on Wednesday.

Apart from my stamina there is one other critical factor that may scupper the attempt. The weather. We just have to hope for the best there (I can hear thunder as I write).

I’m doing all this to raise money for the Alzheimer’s Society. This disease means I never got to know the man who would have become my father-in-law, his life was tragically cut short by early-onset Alzheimer’s. Dementia is not just something that affects the most elderly, it can strike early and millions of friends and family are impacted whenever the disease hits. So please sponsor me to support the Alzheimer’s Society’s critical work.

Note that I’m covering all the costs of this challenge and every penny donated will go to the Alzheimer’s Society.

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