Scott is on top of the world

A FORMER Hunts Post delivery boy has climbed Mount Everest and raised more than £1,800 for charity. Scott McNaughton, 32, a former pupil of Longsands College in St Neots, has just returned home after reaching the summit on Wednesday, May 16. Mr McNaughton

A FORMER Hunts Post delivery boy has climbed Mount Everest and raised more than £1,800 for charity.

Scott McNaughton, 32, a former pupil of Longsands College in St Neots, has just returned home after reaching the summit on Wednesday, May 16.

Mr McNaughton was part of a group of seven British climbers including the two youngest people ever to climb the world's highest mountain. Rob Gauntlet, from Hampshire, celebrated his 19th birthday on the climb and James Hooper from Somerset, is just a few days older than Rob.

The group, which was led by two Nepalese sherpers, spent two months out of the UK, including six weeks acclimatising at the Everest base camp. The climbers then took six days to reach the summit and a further three days to descend back to the base camp.

Mr McNaughton, an accountant, who grew up in Great Staughton, told The Hunts Post: "It really was a weird feeling. Before the push to the summit, you just focus on getting to the top.

"The last half hour before the summit is the hardest because you are climbing at 10pm in darkness. It is very emotional because you are not quite there, but nearly there and you know you are going to get there.

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"Once you get to the top, what you want most is to get back down again because that is the most dangerous part of the expedition with the most fatalities. Apparently, there was a record number of fatalities this year. Though it felt fantastic, I was quite desperate to get back down really."

Mr McNaughton delivered The Hunts Post as a teenager. He decided to raise funds for Macmillan Cancer Relief after his girlfriend's father died of the disease last year. The money will be shared with the charity Children in Crisis, which looks after children in poorer countries, including Nepal where the 8,848 metre-high Everest is.

Mr McNaughton, who now lives in Stotfold, has previously tackled other mountains and climbed the highest mountain in the Southern Hemisphere, Acolacagua in Argentina, which is 7,000 metres high.

To train, he swims, cycles and goes to the gym. One of his training places is Grafham Water, where he will cycle and then run round the 10-mile track twice in a session.

INFORMATION: To donate to Scott McNaughton's charities, see www.scott-on-everest.co.uk

Picture: SUPPLIED.

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