Tom O'Connell (left) and Alex Robinson complete the gruelling mountain challenge

Mountains challenge achieved by Exeter students

Two University of Exeter students have successfully completed a gruelling charity challenge - to reach the summit of all Scotland’s 283 mountains, without the help of motorised transport.

The pair, third year student Alex Robinson and recent graduate Tom O’Connell (Russian and Spanish 2011) completed the expedition to climb all of Scotland’s Munros in aid of DecAid – a charity appeal set up by people aged 25 and under to commemorate the tenth anniversary of the British Armed Forces in Afghanistan this year.

A Munro is a mountain which measures over 3,000 feet to the top and Alex is now the youngest person ever to reach the summit of all 283 in a continuous attempt, without motorised transport.

The team began the attempt on August 1 and has been averaging 17 hour days to complete it.

Their longest climb was 27 hours, along the Cuillin Ridge, summiting eleven Munros including ‘The Inaccessible Pinnacle’ - notorious as the most difficult of the peaks, requiring an arduous rock-climb and abseil to complete the ascent.

Tom O’Connell said: “This has been an incredible 6 weeks and by far the hardest thing I have put myself through physically and mentally but we have been completely overwhelmed by the huge amount of support and encouragement that we have received.”  
All the funds raised from the charity expedition will go to Service charities: Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Families Association (SSAFA) and The British Limbless Ex-Servicemen Association (BLESMA).

Date: 23 September 2011

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