October 2015: Kilimanjaro beckons for student and father


A STUDENT and her father are embarking on a mammoth hike to the top of Africa’s highest mountain Kilimanjaro.

Isobel Wilson, 17, a sixth form student at Haslingden High School and her father Graham, 60, a consultant engineer and school governor, have been in training for six months.

Isobel, from Edenfield, said: “There are not many teenagers who climb Kilimanjaro and we are not sure if I will have altitude or mountain sickness.

“My father has climbed it before and then he raised money for Whizz-Kidz, this time we will be raising money for The Stroke Association in memory of my granddad who died in July aged 92 after suffering the long term effects of a stroke.”

Isobel said when she went to her grandfather’s funeral she learnt so much about him including that he had been a pioneer in printing and was a university lecturer.

While serving in the RAF he flew Wellington and Liberator heavy bombers and crashed into the sea, surviving five days on a life raft along with most of his crew.

Isobel and Graham have been training by undertaking short walks three to four times mid-week and longer ones at the weekend including trips to the Scottish mountains, Wales and the Lake District, carrying an increasingly heavier pack.

A quarry on Scout Moor has been used to train for the difficult terrain on Kilimanjaro, as was their final long-distance walk over Snowdon – the hard way over Watkin Path.

Isobel, who is also Junior British Endurance Horse Riding Champion, added:

“I think the altitude will be the hardest thing. We start off just walking for two hours on the first day, but on the last day we will be walking for 11 hours, starting with an ascent before descending on scree.

“We would like to be able to raise £1,000 and we have about £400 already.”

To sponsor Isobel and her father log on to https://www.justgiving.com/Wilsons-take-on-kilimanjaro