Meet Darren Carew, a Help for Heroes Band of Brothers member, who trekked to Everest Base Camp in 2011and wanted to share his experience with you.
What was it like trekking to Everest Base Camp?
It really gives you a sense of perspective. So often we can get blinkered by our own little world that it is refreshing to really see what is out there. Nepal was so overwhelming that it truly made my injury and circumstances fade away, each day I felt like a child experiencing things for the first time. It’s a special place.
Did you learn anything about yourself out there?
Trekking is an amazing experience, even though you are in the group and may be chatting regularly there are swathes of time where it’s just you and the mountain. It is a hugely mindful experience and I was able to look at every aspect of my life and put it all in order without the noise and distractions of everyday life.
What was it like walking with H4H supporters?
Honestly, it was inspirational. A lot of those I trekked alongside said it was the other way around but not to me. These are people who go out of their way to support us as injured Servicemen and women. They don’t have to but they do and it really makes a difference. Most of those that I trekked through Nepal with have become lifelong friends.
If you could say one thing to someone looking to take on a trek, what would it be?
Do it, don’t think “oh maybe next year” because quite often next year becomes the year after and so on. Help for Heroes Treks give you the opportunity to travel somewhere extraordinary, meet some extraordinary people and all while helping those like myself who have given for their country and have needed that extra support after injury.
Have you got any tips for aspiring mountaineers, such as for kit or training?
You don’t have to go crazy with the training, just try and do something as and when you can then build up from there. The more you put in during training the more you’ll enjoy the whole experience. As for kit, definitely a pair of well broken in boots that are right for the climate. It’s worthwhile getting a solar charger if you like your music when trekking. Definitely take plenty of sweets in wrappers, it will keep your sugar levels up when on the move.