In May 2011, we will be challenging ourselves to summit and cycle between 3 Scottish ski resorts in 48 hours. What started as a casual idea during some after work drinks is now in full swing…
Many of us, who have kids, have needed to visit a children’s hospital at some point. It’s all part of having a family – it comes with the territory. If you live in the Edinburgh area then this hospital is the Royal Hospital for Sick Children – known locally as the ‘Sick Kids’.
I personally have been to the Sick Kids a lot – as a kid myself, but more often as a parent with my own accident-prone children. Over the years I’ve taken my two boys to the X-Ray department, the Orthopaedic department and the Physiotherapy unit. They’ve had a CAT-scan, they’ve seen consultants, specialists, nurses and doctors, and undergone three operations. Every time I go, I know that the staff at the Sick Kids will do an awesome job, repair the damage and ensure my boy(s) come out feeling (and looking) better than they went in. It’s a humbling experience.
Last summer one of my colleagues had to take his young son in to the Sick Kids for the first time and was blown away by the first-class service, quality of care and attention that all patients receive. He left with a sense that the care equation was somewhat one-sided. We decided that we’d like to try and give something back to the Sick Kids to balance the equation. With that in mind, we put our heads together to come up with a vehicle to raise funds for the Sick Kids.
After much deliberation and debate we came up with an event – The Tri-Peak Challenge – which was physically tough enough to really challenge the participants, but at the same time was attainable. The challenge is to climb to the summit of 3 Scottish ski resorts (Glenshee, The Lecht and Cairngorm) and bike between them over the course of 48hrs – in total a distance of around 80 miles on a bike, and over 4000ft of ascent. For some of the participants, this will be a tough challenge that will push them both physically and mentally, and will require a fairly rigorous winter training schedule to attain the fitness required to take the challenge on.
We issued an open invitation to our staff at Osprey Holidays, Ski Independence and Powderbeds (and special guests) and have a team of over 30 people now committed to the event which will take place in late May 2011. We hope to raise £20K to fund a CUSA* machine for the Sick Kids.
*(CUSA (cavitron ultrasonic surgical aspirator) machine allows surgeons to perform ultrasonic aspiration (suction) of brain tumors.)
Day 1 – Friday 26 May 2011
Start at the Spittal of Glenshee and bike to Glenshee ski centre carpark. Climb to the summit of the highest peak at Glenshee ski centre. Climb back down. Bike from Glenshee ski centre carpark to the Lecht ski centre carpark, via Braemar, Balmoral, Glen Gairn, Corgarff and Cock Bridge. Climb to the summit of the highest peak at the Lecht ski centre. Climb back down. Bike from the Lecht ski centre carpark to Tomintoul. Overnight in Tomintoul.
Day 2 – Saturday 27 May 2011
Start at Tomintoul. There are two options for participants on their bikes today – a longer road section via Nethybridge and Coylumbridge, or a shorter, but technically more difficult off-road route from Tomintoul through the Cairngorms. Both routes meet up at Loch Morlich, before biking up to Cairngorm ski centre car park. Climb to the summit of Cairngorm – at over 4000 ft one of Scotland’s biggest mountains. Climb back down. Epic downhill bike to the finish at Glen More campsite on the shore of Loch Morlich.
Phew – I’m tired just thinking about it!
If you would like to support the Royal Hospital for Sick Children and donate towards the Tri Peak Challenge, you can via Just Giving – Tri Peak Challenge.
We’ll keep you up to date on our progress throughout the winter.