The Long Walk
This year, GWT supporter Andrew Lloyd is taking fundraising to a whole new level, trekking an unbelievable 5,000 miles in aid of our earthquake response.
Today, the farmer from Herefordshire – pictured above training in Norway – set off for Russia to start the first leg of his epic journey. It will see him battle the extreme cold of the Siberian plains (-55°C at this time of year!), navigate the blistering heat of the Gobi Desert and trek across the Himalayas through the high altitudes of Tibet and as he makes his way to India.
One of very few people to attempt this feat, to his knowledge, Andrew is the only man to try crossing the Siberian desert in winter, on foot. For this solo mission, he’ll have to pull 95kg of kit and consume 4,000 calories each day just to keep going.
The challenge is set
Inspired by the book ‘The Long Walk’ – which tells the story of six prisoners of war who escaped from a Siberian Gulag camp and began a 5,000-mile trek south in the winter of 1942 – this trip is a once in a lifetime opportunity for adventurous Andrew. Others who have famously trodden this path include French Explorer, Cyril Delafosse-Guiramand, who completed the trip in 14 months. Andrew is keen to beat this time!
“The challenge is set and I don’t need any other reason,” said Andrew. “Records are there to be broken and you wouldn’t do anything if you didn’t take risks. The risks I’m taking are calculated, however – I have put in a lot of training and research, preparing myself physically and mentally to give myself the best chance of completing my goal.
“I have always been a great supporter of the Gurkhas, coming across them in a local town, Brecon, where they often carry out training. The GWT’s work in Nepal is invaluable, helping to put right devastation that has largely gone unreported in the rest of the world. I hope that this trip will shine a light on the situation and raise considerable funds to continue the GWT’s good work.”
Along the way, Andrew has enlisted the help of guides, translators and the Gurkhas themselves, some of whom will be showing him the devastation (and rebuilding) of earthquake damaged Nepal. Unless absolutely necessary, Andrew won’t be using any motorised transport – just his feet and the odd horse (or camel!).
Andrew is looking for sponsorship, support to spread the word and anyone who wants to join him for parts of the journey. He is keen to complete the Siberian leg alone, but once out of this area, fellow explorers are welcome to come along.