Daryl’s Mont Blanc challenge – the planning starts

The first comment on my JustGiving fundraising page simply says: “Nutter. Good luck.”

It may seem a bit crazy. But to me climbing Mont Blanc is a perfectly sane idea, something that I have been wanting to do for a long time.

Earlier this year I took the decision to go ahead and just do it. Unable to fit it in during 2013, I have plumped for June 2014 – which gives me the benefit of additional time to shift the beer belly (as instructed by my guide Simon Abrahams).

I’ve always loved the mountains and on-and-off over the last 25 years or so I have indulged in hillwalking, mountain biking, scrambling, mountaineering and ice climbing, with my ability in each descending in that order. At 4,810 metres, Mont Blanc is the highest mountain in the European Union and therefore – to me anyway – has an obvious attraction.

Once I’d decided to do it I realised it would be great to milk it for publicity raise money for charity, so I will be doing it for the Alzheimer’s Society, which I’ve chosen because I have seen the destruction of this disease at close hand. Dementia seems to be accepted by many as simply an inevitable part of old age and the impact it has on individuals and families is often underestimated until people experience it. It shouldn’t be that way.

Unlike many organised charity challenges, I will not be asking anyone to contribute to the cost of my trip. I will be paying for the whole thing myself so every penny donated will go to charity. I’ll blog about my preparations and fitness training for the trip between now and the attempt which will be around 25 June 2014.

So, go on – sponsor me!

Training day on the Aiguille du Midi with my guide in October 2013

Training day on the Aiguille du Midi in October 2013

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