SPA UK Sandesh 2017 - Page 39

& RATZEL GLACIERS. We ascended through heavy scree towards ‘STELLA POINT’ on the rim of the dormant volcano. After walking for 2 hours in the dark with our head torches and 4 layers of clothing, we saw the magnificent sunrise across the valley. I began to struggle with fatigue and tiredness but was aided with low level oxygen to assist me. As the ascent got steeper and steeper, Balubhai and I slowed down while Navinbhai, Kishorbhai and Arvind banevi continued on to the Stella Point and the summit. With great determination and willpower, Balubhai and I reached STELLA POINT at 5,756m (18,885ft). At this point I said to Patrick, ‘whatever happens we will continue to the summit’. After a gruelling 9 hour climb we reached UHURU PEAK 5,895m (19,341ft) at 2pm (Africa’s highest Point). This was the most mentally and physically challenging part of the trek, but reaching the summit was the best feeling ever! We spent the next day in Moshi visiting the local markets and a Hindu temple. The following morning we took a 12-hour bus trip to Mombasa for 2-night relaxing stay at Bamburi Beach. We then took a memorable 5-hour train journey back to Nairobi which my brothers-in-law did 50 years ago. Finally, in Nairobi we spent a few days chilling out, trying to find the plot of land where my brothers-in-law lived and visited the original SSD Secondary School, off River Road, where they studied over 50 years ago. On our last day we took a 4-hour Safari trip to Nairobi National Park, seeing most of the ‘BIG 5’ animals and feeding giraffes at the sanctuary. In conclusion, this expedition was the most challenging thing I have ever done. I say to ALL Prajapatis in Loughborough Branch and all the rest of the SPA (UK) branches to go and fulfil your dreams, and go out there and make it happen. It is never too late as we 5 MISTRY’s at a combined age of 285 years - “THE DREAM TEAM” - “DID IT”. After taking in the views and photos and feeling overwhelmed at what we had just achieved, we had to Arvind banevi from Hull has raised over £3,000 for the start our descent back to BARAFU CAMP. At 6pm we National Charity ‘Anthony Nolan which does wonderful work reached the base camp and after a half hour rest continued in saving lives of people with blood cancer and Dove House onto MILLENIUM CAMP at 3,540m (12,590ft). We started Hospice, a local charity in East Riding, Yorkshire who care for descending in total darkness with our head torches on again people with illness for which there is no cure. and I was aided by my guide Leonard who held onto me for 4 hours as my legs were like jelly! We finally reached the camp at 11pm after walking for a total of 17 hours. Day 10 - After a good rest and sleep we woke up to a blue sky and a spectacular view of the forest in front of us with the backdrop of the snow-capped mountain of Kilimanjaro. It was our final day in the tent. After breakfast we commenced our last descent to MWEKA CAMP at 3,100m (10,150ft), walking for 6 hours (13.5km). One hour later we finally reached the MWEKA GATE and officially finished our trek. The porters and guides sang and danced their final farewell Balubhai from Rugby has raised over £500 for Sewa UK, which is building a school in India for special children and in memory of Vinod Mistry in Rugby for Ward 34 at University Hospital Coventry, Warwickshire for a scanner. I also targeted raising £2000 for a local charity in Loughborough, Rainbows Hospice who do amazing work in looking after terminally ill children. I have raised over £600 so far and the following link is still open, so any donations will be highly appreciated. song to us and then we tipped them all for the 7 days of I would like to thank my family and friends who have amazing teamwork and looking after us all so well. supported us all on achieving our goals and thank you all for In the evening, we and the 3 main guides enjoyed a vegetarian meal at Milans in Moshi and a few bottles of Kilimanjaro/Serengeti cold beers to celebrate our achievement, then we were presented with our certificates. those who have donated to our chosen charities. I wish all a very Prosperous New Year. Champak Mistry Secretary - Loughborough Branch vol. 42 | Prajapati Sandesh 2017 37