World-travellers hike to Machu Picchu to raise cash for Weston charity

PUBLISHED: 19:00 05 September 2017

Sally Macpherson and Gary Anderson at Machu Picchu.

Sally Macpherson and Gary Anderson at Machu Picchu.

Archant

A Weston-super-Mare couple who have travelled to 12 countries in as many months have trekked to Machu Picchu via The Inca Trail to raise £700 for charity.

Sally Macpherson and Gary Anderson during the Inca Trail.Sally Macpherson and Gary Anderson during the Inca Trail.

Sally Macpherson and Gary Anderson, aged 43 and 54 respectively, left Weston almost a year ago to travel the world.

They have since journeyed more than 66,300 miles to see wonders such as the Great Wall of China and the Rocky Mountains, and explore cities including Las Vegas and Vancouver.

But this week the hardened travellers completed one of their biggest challenges yet in aid of the Ian Ritchie Foundation, when they trekked to the top of Machu Picchu.

Sally said: “Machu Picchu is iconic and has been on our bucket list for a long time. We decided if we were going to do it, then the only way was to go via the Inca Trail – a four-day hike camping off-grid for three nights.

“We hiked between 10 and 12 hours a day.

“We survived the trail, although we’re not quite sure how as it’s the hardest thing physically and mentally that I have ever had to do.

“Hiking at altitude is like nothing else.”

Their chosen charity supports people with cystic fibrosis and was set up in memory of Ian Ritchie, a Worle man who died after undergoing a double lung transplant in 2015.

Sally works at Cook and Co Estate Agents in Worle Village and said she chose to raise money for the foundation because one of her colleagues knew Ian.

She said: “I wanted the sponsorship to be for something local which meant a lot being so far from home.

“The family of Ian have worked tirelessly to raise money and awareness of cystic fibrosis and if our small contribution can help then it is worth it.

“I have to admit the thought of the sponsorship kept me going at times.”

The couple, who are from Hillside, aimed to raise just £250 but have already beaten their target to raise £707.

Sally and Gary are due to return to Weston today (Tuesday), in time for her mother’s 70th birthday.

She said: “By the time we get back home we would have travelled over 66,300 miles.”

To sponsor them, visit www.justgiving.com and search Sally Macpherson.

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