Published: January 31, 2011
In Video: Burnham-On-Sea fundraiser completes Kilimanjaro climb

Burnham-On-Sea businessman Mark Woods has told of his "exhaustion" and "elation" at completing his climb to the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro to raise money for local charities.

In the video above, which was filmed in the crater of the mountain, Mark, who runs Watermark Financial Solutions in Burnham High Street, explains the many challenges he faced during the climb, which has raised more than £6,000.

"It's absolutely fantastic that we have made it... but it has been tough," he said.

"The trek and over night camp in the crater of Mt Kilimanjaro were more challenging, rewarding and enlightening than I had expected. The constant headache for days on end, the loss of appetite, six days of diahorrea and the bitterly cold weather made it an experience I will never forget, but also made me feel that I had earned the sponsorship."

He added: "The descent from the peak itself was very, very tricky - it was snow and ice with a tiny scree path through it. The main path up was mostly scree, so it felt as though you were taking four steps forward but only gaining three. It was a little bit demoralising but we got here and I'm feeling good about it."

As part of his challenge, he camped overnight in the crater of the 19,000ft tall mountain, where temperatures often reach -25 degrees.

His fundraising feat has raised more than £6,500 for Weston Hospicecare, Children's Hospice South West and Cancer Research UK. readers can still sponsor Mark by clicking here.

The trip was particularly poignant for Mark as it marked the 20th anniversary of the death of his father, who lost his battle with lung cancer in 1991.


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