Great Yarmouth and North Walsham friends tackle Three Peaks challenge ahead of African mountain quest

Martin Fairchild, Gary Cartwright, Andy Povey and Jonathan Grimsey on the Three Peaks challenge.
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Martin Fairchild, Gary Cartwright, Andy Povey and Jonathan Grimsey on the Three Peaks challenge. Picture: Jonathan Grimsey - Credit: Archant

Two friends who plan an epic ascent of an African mountain have prepared for their challenge by scaling the Three Peaks in 29 hours.

The four friends celebrate their Three Peaks challenge.
Picture: Jonathan Grimsey

The four friends celebrate their Three Peaks challenge. Picture: Jonathan Grimsey - Credit: Archant

Jonathan Grimsey, from Great Yarmouth, and Martin Fairchild, from North Walsham, aim to clamber to the top of Mount Kilimanjaro next year to raise vital funds for the Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation.

To help them prepare for their 6,000m high African ordeal, the friends have completed the Three Peaks Challenge of Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike and Snowdon - resulting in more donations for their chosen cause.

They were joined by friends Gary Cartright and Andy Povey at the weekend and although they planned to climb three mountains in 24 hours, they are not disappointed with their completion time of 29 hours.

Mr Grimsey, a carwash service engineer, said: 'We wanted to complete it in 24 hours but due to a traffic jam on our way to Ben Nevis for our first trek, we weren't able to start until 9.30pm on Friday, which meant trekking in the dark.

'This was manageable until we reached the summit, where weather conditions and cloud cover changed for the worse.

'We became very disorientated and spent over an hour trying to find a safe way back down, whilst being hit with sleet and gale force winds.

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'We held it together, and with great relief eventually found a safe path back down.

'Scafell Pike went well, we managed to complete the trek in five minutes short of four hours, despite being exhausted from the events of the previous mountain.

'We finally reached the start of the final trek at the base of Mount Snowdon at 9.30pm on Saturday, which again meant scaling in the dark.

'This proved very challenging at times but we made it to the summit then walked the nicer railway route down, finishing at around 2.30am on Sunday.'

The friends are climbing Mount Kilimanjaro for the Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation as a thank you for the support the charity gave while Mr Grimsey's father, Nigel, was terminally ill.

He died aged 56 in 2012.

They hope to raise £8,000 and as a result of their Three Peaks challenge they have reached more than £2,000 in donations.

Mr Grimsey and Mr Fairchild have a Just Giving donations page at www.justgiving.com/2m1m

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