‘Matt’-chu Picchu trek 2019!

Matt Cox signed up to trek to Machu Picchu and raise money for Cancer Research UK in memory of his cousin Mandi.

‘I saw the advert for the Ultra Adventures trek to Machu Picchu and I was instantly tempted to do it. After a chat with my wife over fundraising ideas I signed up that evening. I set up my JustGiving page so that I could give myself the maximum amount of time to hit the fundraising target, I was really pleased with the generous donations and encouragement I got! People I hadn’t seen in years were helping me to get to my target, which I hit just before Christmas 2018.

In January, I started training and once a week I would go for a hike with my Dad which was really nice as we’d not shared much time together in years. I also went to the gym, jogging and walking most evenings to help me prepare for the trek.

I’d never done anything like this before so I was looking forward to the Ultra Adventures challenge! After a few final sponsors from local businesses in exchange for their logo on my trek t-shirt I reached £5,000 for Cancer Research UK. I set off to meet the group at Heathrow airport for the journey to Peru.

We landed in Cusco where we spend the day taking in the local sites and getting acclimatised. The following day we took a trip to the beautiful rainbow mountain which was incredible and our first taste of the trekking altitude.

The following day we started the trek to Machu Picchu which spanned over 4 days with amazing sites every step of the way! There were some challenging steep sections, long downhill sections, bright blue lakes, snow-capped mountains and plenty of wildlife. The whole journey was stunning.

On the final day of the trek, we approached the sun gate where we were greeted by an incredible view of Machu Picchu. We arrived at the Machu Picchu site around 5pm which was perfect as there were hardly any other tourists which meant we could explore and capture amazing photos of the sunset over this incredible site. This was the best and most rewarding part of the experience. After a well needed nights sleep we returned to Machu Picchu in the morning for a full tour.

My Machu Picchu experience was truly unforgettable. I met some great people, had lots of fun, trekked an incredible distance and raised over £5,000 for Cancer Research UK in memory of my cousin Mandi. I’d like to thank everyone involved in making the experience, with a special thank you to Natalie, our medic who looked after us every step of the way.

If anyone is thinking about taking part in an Ultra Adventures trek, don’t think – just do! You won’t regret it.

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On Top of The World – Scott Wyper

So, in short, I did it! I made it to the top of Mt Kilimanjaro 5,895m or 19,341ft. The rooftop of Africa, the highest free-standing mountain on this planet.

“…you realise what humans are capable of!”

Sorry to anyone who wanted an update sooner, but I came back and wanted to settle back into what is deemed to be normality for a week and let it all really sink in before writing this post. I felt there was something kinda final about posting this and letting everyone know and I suppose I didn’t/don’t really want this experience to be over. But it is and when you come back down with a bump you realise what a truly amazing experience it was from start to finish.

It’s weird being back after 7 days on the mountainside with one sole purpose. To walk and keep on walking until you get to the top. Things are different, after spending a fair chunk of the time in your own head and the rest with a bunch of people who were strangers to me when we met at the airport or when we met on day one in Tanzania, you realise what humans are capable of.

Coming together with a common goal and bonding in a way that is very unique I could not have asked to set out on the mission with a better bunch of absolute legends, everyone with their own reasons for being there. All bringing their own personality and additions to the group dynamic. We all got each other up and down with support, banter, grit and determination. I really have made a troop of friends for life, the bond we have forged is a very special one that could only come from such an expedition.

I have said to a few people now I kinda feel like it was two adventures the first part getting to base camp. Different terrain each day, being woken with an African song and dance. Getting higher each day and your lungs, legs and mind being tested a little each day. Getting to know the group, the porters and guides (who by the way are superhuman) with every step.

Then the second adventure was summit night/day. To say it was hard is an understatement. Setting off at midnight and walking for 12hrs. the conditions were insane, -20 and the rest with 60-70mph winds, packed ice that was like walking on an ice rink with glass shoes on. I had to dig deeper than I ever have before, deeper than I knew I could and for hours on end. It took every fibre in my body, mind and soul to keep pushing. But with my comrades support one foot in front of the other sometimes having to literally crawl WE did it. What a feeling, what an experience, what a life changer.

I could go on and on but I’m going to leave it at that for now. So many memories and stories to tell and photos to share, but let’s talk about them the next time we meet. I can’t wait to catch up with you all and tell you ALL about it.

Thanks to all my Tanzanian brothers and thanks to all my new friends we did it TOGETHER!

Lastly thanks to all who donated to the cause getting my JustGiving total for Cancer Research UK up to nearly £8,300 which is £8,800 including gift aid truly amazing. As a group we are upwards of £80,000 It’s not too late yet if you still want to contribute my page is open for a few more weeks we are trying to get to £100,000