Walkers from across the country came in their hundreds to take part in Heart Research UK’s 16th Yorkshire Three Peaks Challenge, last Saturday.
Despite the extremely wet and windy weather conditions, over 300 enthusiastic hikers turned up with their waterproofs and walking boots to brave the 25-mile walk.
The Heart Research UK walkers took on the gruelling challenge of hiking three of the highest peaks in the Yorkshire Dales including Pen-y-ghent, Whernside and Ingleborough to help raise much needed funds for pioneering research into the prevention, treatment and cure of heart disease.
Walkers began the 25-mile trek at 7am and persevered until 1pm when Heart Research UK were advised that Pen-y-ghent and Ingleborough had become unsafe, due to the adverse weather conditions. Some experienced walkers decided to continue and managed to complete all three peaks, whilst others were transported by minibus back to the HRUK base, and were greeted with a warm welcome and a certificate for their achievement.
Denise Armstrong, Assistant National Director at Heart Research UK, said: “Our main priority is the safety of our walkers, as this is a challenge that welcomes walkers of all abilities it is essential we have the right safety procedures in place. Although this was this was the first time in 16 years we have had to advise walkers to finish early, the weather certainly did not dampen the atmosphere. I would like to thank and congratulate everyone who took part on the day whether you completed one, two or all three of the peaks it is a massive achievement and we hope you come back next year.”
Despite the weather there was plenty of action and excitement on the day, a major highlight was when 32 year old Radoslaw Zrebiec was the first to cross the finish line. He had decided to run instead of walk the three peaks and completed his challenge in an astounding 5 hours and 30 minutes.
Also braving the elements was HRUK’s youngest walker ever, JD Anderson. JD, aged 7 and his Dad, Patrick where amongst those who completed the challenge, with the impressive time of 11 hours and 30 minutes. The young lad was walking in memory of his Grandmother who passed away of a heart attack last year.
JD said: “It was a really hard challenge and I was very tired when I got to Heart Research UK finishing post, but delighted to discover that I had walked 25 miles in 11.5 hours. I am so happy with my achievement and I have told everybody at school all about the Yorkshire Three Peaks challenge. I’m glad I took part in memory of my Granny, who I miss very much and I know she would have loved to hear all about my challenge.”
If you would like to take part in next year’s event, please visit http://www.heartresearch.org.uk/events/yorkshirethreepeakschallenge