A PUB landlord in Godmanchester has teamed up with a nearby estate agent to embark on an eight-day expedition to Mount Everest Base Camp.
Paul Dyer, who runs The Exhibition in London Road, and Phillip Malley, partner at Gatehouse Estates, were chatting one day in the pub about things they wanted to do before they die when the subject of climbing Everest came up.
Before they knew it, the pair had booked a flight via India to Kathmandu, in Nepal, from where they will go onto the small village of Lukla in the Himalayan mountains.
At that point they will begin their climb to the top of Kala Pattar (Everest base camp), reaching an altitude of 5,364m (17,598ft) before hiking back to Lukla.
The trek, which will begin in March, aims to raise money for Macmillan Cancer Relief, for which The Exhibition has raised £62,000 over the past eight years.
“It has been on my list of things to do before I die for a long time,” said Mr Malley, 36, who lives in London Street, Godmanchester and has already climbed Mount Kilimanjaro “It is an opportunity to go and do a once-in-a-lifetime thing.
“It’s a fairly long round trip in total in terms of mileage but the altitude will be a real problem as it becomes very difficult to breathe.”
The pair have undergone some fitness training before setting off next month but admit it will be very difficult to prepare, as they don’t know what the conditions will be like until they get there.
At this time of year, temperatures can vary from 20C to -20C, meaning that sleep is going to be one of the main challenges on the expedition.
Mr Dyer, 44, added: “Having read several books on the subject its purely luck of the draw with the altitude sickness. That and the cold are the two biggest things.
“Cancer is something that affects everyone and, God forbid, it might be me as well. It is something everyone is interested in, so it is a great cause to raise money for.”
The pair say any amount will be gratefully received but that £2,500 would be a good achievement.
They are paying for the cost of the trip themselves, meaning every penny raised – plus Gift Aid contributions from JustGiving - will go straight to the charity.
INFORMATION: To donate, visit the website www.justgiving.com/theex