Sponsee, Callum Shaikh, Takes on Snowdonia

Posted by / November 28, 2017

Since our last catch up with Sponsee, Callum Shaikh, in September, further progress on his preparation for World Challenge Nepal 2018 has taken place including working his way through his kit list of necessities and organising doctor’s appointments for his upcoming injections and medications. The main goal for Callum and his team’s preparation this autumn has been to try to recreate the natural conditions and challenges as closely as they’ll truly be when in Nepal. Working through difficulties that arise, applying their teamwork skills and becoming use to the physical demands that will be placed on them are all areas that the team wanted to focus on further developing in preparation of their trip. What better way to get gauge your preparedness for an impending experience than to recreate that experience, on a smaller, more local scale? That’s exactly what Callum and his team thought at least! It didn’t take long for the team to figure out the best option for them to do just this was by taking on Snowdonia! The Snowdonia trek was quickly scheduled and the team worked away to prepare. The time to test and tailor their skills for Nepal took place on the weekend of the 10th November 2017. Callum and the others in his team awoke before sunrise and met up at their school at 5:30am on Saturday 11th November. After a long journey west to Wales, they arrived at the camp at 10:00am. The first task of the day was to make up the tents in the camp and prepare for a smaller trek up a mountain close to Snowdon. After setting up camp, Callum and his team hiked for over 3 hours to a height of 400 metres, all the way completing team building exercises as part of their preparation for Nepal. The team rested for a short lunch before descending to the camp for the evening. However, the day’s work didn’t end once they reached their camp. Gear had to be removed and prepped for the next day. Dinner needed to then be made for the exhausted team, but also lunches to sustain them on day two also needed to be prepared, all before they could rest after an incredibly long day of training. The next morning, the team rose again at sunrise. It was the day they had prepped for. Climbing Snowdon was going to be the monumental task of the day. However, the best laid plans often change when you’re at the mercy of Mother Nature! On Sunday, Snowdon’s weather had taken a turn. The mountain had exceptionally bad weather – which included high winds and snow on the peak of the mountain. This made the plan to trek up Snowdon impossible for the team. Callum shared that the team weren’t discouraged: “We quickly re-grouped to develop a new plan and decided that they would trek up Electric Mountain.” The trek up Electric Mountain was a great challenge, but ultimately, a great success as the weather was tolerable and the trek itself was the real-life training the team had been hoping to achieve. After another strenuous day, once the team reached the base of the mountain, they were then assigned a task to complete in the town of Llandberis, where Electric Mountain is located.
“We were split into groups and each group was given a task for Llandberis. My group were to find the town’s best local attractions, but other teams were sent to find somewhere that we could sleep or find food to eat, if needed. This task was very useful as it’s exactly the practice we’ll use in the remote regions of Nepal.”
Overall, Callum shared that he and the team had a very challenging weekend but took away vital knowledge and further skills that they’ll use directly in Nepal.
“During the journey home, we discussed our experiences and how we would use these in Nepal, what we would do different and what additional skills we will all need as individuals and within a team.”
Callum’s World Challenge flights to Nepal have now been booked. He and his World Challenge team will be taking to the skies on 9th July with an arrival to Nepal on 10th July. Of course, we’ll be hearing from him again before with updates as he shares his medical experience of prepping for the trip in the coming weeks. If you would like to sponsor Callum Shaikh, you can do so by visiting his gofundme page here. Go Back