News January-March 2011

People wanted for Kilimanjaro ‘Christchurch Earthquake Fund’ expedition
Posted by Henry at 1:36 pm, March 22nd 2011.
On the 22nd February, 2011, a massive 6.3 earthquake hit Christchurch, New Zealand. A team of New Zealanders – including a few from that benighted city – and their friends in London were feeling helpless watching the unbearable events unfold on the other side of the world and wanted to do something to help. In response, they’ve decided to take on the challenge of climbing Mt Kilimanjaro, Africa’s highest Mountain, in August 2011 to help raise money for the Christchurch Earthquake Fund. All this with the aim of raising $5895 (the height of kilimanjaro in metres) to help the city and people they hold so close to their hearts get back on its feet.

All money donated through will go directly to the Red Cross Christchurch Earthquake Appeal – So please
dig deep and donate.

Furthermore, if you would like to be part of the NZ Kilimanjaro expedition – please email: or check out

Climb in Aid of the Samantha Dickson Brain Tumour Trust
Posted by Henry at 10:30 am, March 21st 2011.
At the end of the long rains in Tanzania this year, David Perrow, together with 14 friends and family members, will be attempting to climb Kilimanjaro. The trek will be particularly poignant for David, who will be climbing in aid of the Samantha Dickson Brain Tumour Trust, following the death of his wife last March after battling for four years with brain cancer.

David describes Sarah as ‘an inspirational person to all those she met’, and says that they all ‘miss her greatly’. Indeed, the climbing group includes Sarah’s father, brother and many of her friends.

David is hoping to raise a total of £10,000 towards helping fund research and provide support to those affected by brain cancer. You can help them achieve this goal by visiting their webpage on the site:

We do, of course, wish David and his team all the best, and will hopefully keep you informed of their progress on their trek.

Climb for Cancer Research UK
Posted by Henry at 8:56 am, March 17th 2011.
In early September this year, two brave souls from the UK will pit themselves against the might of Africa’s highest mountain, Kilimanjaro, in aid of Cancer Research UK.

Brandi Legon and Simon Clayton, from Benfleet in Essex, will be climbing on our Unique Rongai Route and plan to reach the summit on 12 September at around dawn. They both have a very personal reason for climbing for this charity, which aims to beat cancer by discovering new ways to prevent, diagnose and treat the disease. Simon’s mum, Hazel, lost her battle with liver cancer last month. Brandi too, has lost several family members to different forms of cancer over the past few years.

The pair have set themselves a target of £3000 – with, they promise, every penny donated going to the charity!

If you wish to sponsor them, then you can visit their page at the following address:

We do, of course, wish Brandi and Simon every success on their trek – and will let you know how they get on.

Good luck both of you!

Science measures effects of deforestation on The Snows of Kilimanjaro
Posted by Henry at 10:14 am, March 9th 2011.
I am indebted to John Gregoire, one of our clients who is due to climb with us in July this year, for sending in an article on Kilimanjaro that he discovered on the Science Daily website. The article discusses work by scientists at the University of Alabama in Huntsville who are using models to measure the deforestation around the lower slopes of Kilimanjaro and the effect this has on the weather patterns on the mountain. Using data from NASA satellites, they hope to find out whether – and by how much – the deforestation is aggravating the shrinking of the snows atop Kili’s Kibo peak.

With less than 2 sq km of glaciers now existing at the summit, the study is obviously a vital one. Using July as their base month (a ‘dry season’ month, and thus one less affected by the large-scale climate systems from the Indian Ocean), Dr. Udaysankar Nair and doctoral student Jonathan Fairman, together with University of Alabama’s in Huntsville’s Dr. Sundar Christopher and Dr. Thomas Mölg at the University of Innsbruck, Austria, found that deforestation is having an impact on the climate of the mountain – and thus the amount of ice present at the summit.

In particular, it found that on the southern side of Kilimanjaro the rainfall is actually occurring higher up the mountain now, with less rain falling below 6500ft (1981m) altitude, but more rain falling between 6500ft and 13000ft (3962m). On the north side of the mountain, however, there is less rainfall altogether.

So why is this happening – and what does this mean for Kilimanjaro’s famous snowy summit? Well, because Kilimanjaro stands all alone on the plains of northern Tanzania, with no other mountain within 60km of it, so under normal circumstances airflow (wind) is able to simply blow around it. However, with the forest disappearing, there is less resistance to this airflow and the wind is able to flow up the slopes more easily as it meets less resistance.

As Nair says: “When you cut down forests you reduce surface roughness, which increases wind speed at higher elevations on the windward slopes. That faster wind over steep upper slopes causes more intense cloud formation and precipitation up the side of the mountain.” As he points out, however, more work needs to be done before any firm conclusions can be reached. To this end, the group are now looking at what happens during the mountain’s two rainy seasons to find out whether this change in the climate on Kilimanjaro has a negative – or, indeed, positive – effect on the mountain’s glaciers.

Climbing for children in India and Africa
Posted by Henry at 3:24 pm, February 25th 2011.
Tomorrow morning Rahul Talwar will begin a six-day climb on the Machame Route, destination: the summit! An ambitious enough project in itself, but in addition Rahul will be hoping to raise £5000 each for two charities. The first is Future Hope, based in Calcutta, India, which looks after street children. The second, Vipingo Village Fund in Kenya, seeks to improve the future of over 100 young children whose lives have been devastated by HIV. Most of these children have lost both their parents to the virus, while many are HIV positive themselves! Without the VVF fund, these childrens lives would be nothing, over as soon as they are born.

If you’d like to donate to either fund by sponsoring Rahul’s climb, then you can visit his justgiving pages at the following addresses:

In addition to the climb, Rahul has promised that, if he reaches the ambitious £5000 on either charity, he will then take on Mount Kenya too!

We do, of course, wish Rahul every success and will keep you posted on his progress.

Kilimanjaro conquered by 10-year-old Canadian Girl
Posted by Henry at 7:06 pm, February 20th 2011.
Following on from last week’s announcement of an 11-year-old Australian boy’s successful conquest of Africa’s highest mountain comes news of a Canadian girl who has achieved a similar feat at an even younger girl. At 2:45pm on 30th January, 2011, Amber Guderian, just 10 years old, made it to the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro.

She was accompanied on her trek by her father, Doug Guderian. Indeed, they were the only two in their party of seven who actually made it to the summit, even though they had opted for an eight-day trek – six up, two down.

Her reaction to her achievement was fairly understated: “When I saw the sign, I was like ‘Yay!’” she said the day after she and her father had returned to their home in Kitchener. Her dad, however, was more effusive:
“I was really, really glad for Amber that she was able to get there, and that we were able to do it together,” said Doug, 46. “I was very proud of her.”

Congratulations Amber – and, of course, Doug. Nice one!

Young Australian reaches the summit
Posted by Henry at 11:39 am, February 17th 2011.
In another of our occasional bulletins on freakishly young kids getting to the top of Kilimanjaro, a newspaper article has been sent to me by a Karl Ottogalli (presumably the kid’s father) detailing a successful climb last month by an 11-year-old boy!

The boy, Jivan Ottogalli, from Ocean Reach in Western Australia, was climbing to raise money for sick children in his home state, and reached the summit on January 9th of this year. As the local newspaper, the West Australian, says, Jivan’s mother Marika has no idea where her sons’ desire to climb mountains came from – though Jivan’s 15-year-old brother Hanson completed the climb three years ago, which presumably was some sort of inspiration.

So far Jivan has raised US$1000 for the Princess Margaret Foundation. You too can make a donation by visiting

We do of course congratulate Jivan on his incredible achievement.

Posted by Henry at 5:48 pm, February 10th 2011.
On 12 February 2011, two brave souls will be pitting themselves against Africa’s highest mountain in aid of the worthwhile charity Wateraid. The pair – mother and son team Sue and Paul Power, from Buckinghamshire – have already raised over a £1000 for Wateraid, which is an international non-governmental organisation that aims to transform lives by improving access to safe water, hygiene and sanitation in the world’s poorest communities. You can read more about the work they do by visiting their website at .

Sue and Paul have also set up their own page to enable donors to give donations via credit card. The address is:

We do of course wish them both well and will let you know how they get on over the next couple of weeks.

Good luck Sue and Paul!

Four Brits raising money for The Wiseman Trust and Children with Leukemia
Posted by Henry at 11:00 am, February 2nd 2011.
On 12 February 2011 four plucky women will be climbing Kilimanjaro in aid of two charities. The women – Amelia Joyner, Lindsey Suter, Lesley Taylor and Sarah Davenport – will be taking on the Unique Rongai Route and hope to reach the highest point in Africa, Uhuru Peak, on 18 February. They will be climbing in aid of two charities: The Wiseman Trust, a small charity that raises money for research into Twin-to-Twin Transfusion Syndrome, a little-known condition that accounts for the deaths of many hundreds of identical-twin newborns; and also Children with Leukaemia, the UK’s leading charity dedicated to fighting Britain’s biggest childhood cancer. Altogether, the four adventurers hope to raise at least £3000.
Visit Site
You can read all about their expedition and their fundraising efforts on the following page: Url=kili_2011&isTeam=true

We do, of course, wish them all well and will hopefully let you know how they get on later this month.

Climb in aid of Teenager Cancer Trust
Posted by Henry at 9:31 pm, January 26th 2011.
In March 2011 a team of nurses, doctors, theatre staff, admin staff, families – and a whole bunch of other people! – will be climbing Kilimanjaro on behalf of the Teenage Cancer Trust.

As is so often the case, this ‘fun’ expedition has as its genesis a tragic loss. Indeed, in this case, two tragic losses, with two 16-year-olds, Hannah Newham and Rebecca Foster, losing their fight against cancer back in 2008.

All money raised from the expedition will go towards the Teenage Cancer Trust – specifically for the Nottingham Units. As is explained on their website: “Having a teenage unit at the QMC and Nottingham City Hospital will mean so much to teenagers who have been diagnosed with cancer. Teenagers need their own space and to be around people of their own age. It is often difficult for them to talk to their parents about their fears and the implications of living with cancer, which they are old enough to understand only too well. It will mean that they can have their friends to visit while they are having chemotherapy in an environment which is relaxed and more suited to their needs. It will help take their minds off the disease and allow them to feel ‘normal’ again. The needs and emotions of teenagers are very different to those of a baby, toddler or young child and indeed those of an adult.”

You can sponsor this most worthy of causes by visiting the webpage or by calling QMC directly on 0115 9249924, ext 65016 or 63315.

The world’s highest ever Burn’s Night held on Kilimanjaro’s Uhuru Peak
Posted by Henry at 6:33 pm, January 19th 2011.
That great Scottish celebration, Burn’s Night, was celebrated a few thousand miles away from its homeland last night on the summit of Africa’s highest mountain, Kilimanjaro. The feast, organised by members of the hospitality industry to raise funds for the charity Hospitality Industry Trust (HIT), was prepared by Michelin-star chef Andrew Fairlie, from Perth.

Organisers are hoping to raise a total of £150,000 from the event.

Kilimanjaro news stories April-June 2011 >>