Three disabled walkers climb Mount Kilimajaro

Added 12/08/2010

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The disabled walkers, with only one good leg between them, set out to climb Mount Kilimanjaro, determined to conquer the 5,891m high peak in spite of their disabilities. The climb was part of the Warfighter Sports Challenge arranged by Disabled Sports USA.

The three Americans are all amputees, and they tackled the mountain using sturdy titanium prosthetic legs, which struggled to gain purchase on the scree-laden paths. All of the men lost their legs in different wars. Dan Nevins lost both his legs in Iraq and Neil Duncan lost his legs in Afghanistan, while Kirk Bauer lost one leg in Vietnam.

It normally takes three or four days to climb Mount Kilimanjaro, but the three disabled walkers managed it in six due to the struggles they faced with their prosthetic limbs. The climb was gruelling for all three men, and though their legs continued to fail on them, they kept going until they reached the summit. Dan made it to the top but he had to be carried down on a wheeled stretcher after one of his stumps became too sore and he suffered from altitude sickness.

The three disabled walkers have tackled one of the most difficult climbs on the planet. Mount Kilimanjaro is the highest mountain in Africa, and even able bodied hikers find the climb a challenge. They have proved that being disabled needn’t stop you from pushing yourself to the limit and following your dreams.

Anyone wanting to climb Mount Kilimanjaro must be reasonably fit and a certain amount of training should be undertaken in the months leading up to the climb. If you are disabled and you want to tackle Kilimanjaro, visit your doctor for advice and guidance. Some might wish to climb Mount Kilimanjaro in support of a registered charity — many of them arrange organised climbs.

When arranging your Kilimanjaro adventure, make sure you buy travel insurance that covers trekking at altitude and ensure you have sturdy walking boots to tackle the challenge.