Jurassic Coast Hike for Trekstock 10th Anniversary
This weekend we embarked on a 30km hike along the Jurassic Coast to raise money for Trekstock.
Trekstock works with young people battling cancer and was set up 10 years ago by Sophie Epstone in response to one of her close friend’s cancer experience.
This was the first time I have ever done a proper hike, over 3-4 hours. The challenge was a 30km hike across the Jurassic Coast Lulworth Cove to our finish point in Swanage. This particular part of the coast has many high ascents and the total climb would be higher than Ben Nevis!
35 of use were signed up to take part, coming from all sorts of backgrounds, all walks of life. We were comprised of supporters of the charity, people who worked for Trekstock and those who are supported by Trekstock as they battle Cancer.
The weather was looking pretty dicey in the week building up to the hike… we were all anxiously watching the reports.
We all arrived the night before and had a team meeting with the guides. The weather was an issue. The guides told us that if the UK Met Office named this particular bit of weather an official storm then we would not have been able to do the hike at all. Ireland already called it “Helen”. The forecast was for gale-force winds across the Southwest of England. The guides were going to decide in the morning on the safest route.
The next morning, the winds were intense. It was decided that we would start further inland at Corfe Castle and make our way to the coast instead of the planned route starting from Lulworth Cove. We met the coast at Kimerridge Bay and then followed a coastal path.
At Kimerridge we encountered the first real incline with the wind battering us. It definitely felt gale-force! People were being blown all over the place. It was no joke. It had been windy the whole time, but hitting the coast and climbing - it made us realise how much of an issue this weather actually was.
The average winds were 55mph. This definitely added to the intensity of the experience. But, when not battling the winds, we were able to take in the stunning coastline.
By 3pm (starting at 8am), 3 hours from our final destination, we encountered a major ascent and the winds were a huge problem. The guides decided it was too dangerous to continue along the coast so we changed our route inland so that we could finish our 30km - but with everyone in tact!
We got back to our base camp (hotel) at around 6pm with a lot of relieved and tired faces. It was a hugely successful day with everyone completing the hike in very difficult circumstances. We had a nice little celebration with a dinner in town, all very pleased with our efforts.
As we walked, I was honoured to hear the stories from some of those currently or recently battling cancer and how Trekstock helped them through the process. One particular story gave me chills - given not long to live and still with us several years later.
Not only did this fantastic group of people complete a grueling trek but we also raised £25,000 for Trekstock which is an amazing result. They do such important work and hearing about the difference it had made in the lives of those who battled cancer really hit this home for me.
If you haven’t already, there’s still time to donate! Head to my donation page before May 11th to do your bit to help young people battling cancer.
Thank you to Sophie and everyone at Trekstock for organising such a wonderful event and for everything you do.
I managed to get back out for a little 2 hour walk on the Sunday to snap some pics of the beautiful scenery in sunshine minus the wind. I headed to Lulworth Cove to take it all in and it is truly stunning.