Through the Dark: 50km Dartmoor Traverse
Last Friday evening our team and 25 brave men and women trekked across Dartmoor to shine a light on mental health.
Fundraising for our Move Forward Program which aims to rebuild people both physically and mentally post-cancer, we wanted to highlight the mental side of strength with a gruelling challenge. The group raised an incredible £3,000 between them.
Kicking off the route at 5pm near Princetown, Dartmoor in Devon, the teams' phones and watches were taken away to play into the mental side of the challenge ahead.
Guided by Royal Marines Tommo and Henry, our group took on a planned route of 50km. Heavy rainfall and sub-zero temperatures in the weeks before meant harsh conditions and boggy, rough terrain.
Morale started high despite no head torches for the first leg. A hot drink and can of NOCCO at RV point 1, the team carried on through the dark through shared suffering to open up and connect with one another on mental health and loss.
After 9pm, conditions grew increasingly worse with torrential rain and wind chill hitting our group on some of Dartmoor's most exposed landscapes. At almost halfway, Tommo and Henry lead the group through a fast-flowing river crossing 8 meters wide - one of the most dangerous parts of the exercise.
At around 2:30am, the group reached RV point 4 over two hours later than planned having lost significant time due to strong winds, severe rain and freezing temperatures. Sadly, the trek was cut short here approximately 30km and 10 hours in. The conditions meant they could not keep up the desired pace they'd set out to do which would have resulted in them all being out in the very wet and coldness of Dartmoor for far too long.
BUT what an effort made by all. Over £3,000 raised for the Move Forward Program, important conversations had, experiences shared and an incredible feat achieved by a team of all ages, abilities and backgrounds pulling each other through.
A huge thank you to Tommo and Henry for overseeing the route and everyone's safety, and to everyone that gave generously. Here's to the next time!
You can still donate by following this link