Greg Whyte was there from the very first training session to the mountain's summit.
I planned the climb to overcome empty nest syndrome but learnt so much more about my inner strength
Solo travel is definitely not just for 20-somethings - but there's no doubt this is the decade when people often catch the solo travel bug. Whether it's a traditional gap year or simply making the most of having fewer responsibilities, it's a great time to pack up and go.
We switched off our head torches and allowed our eyes to adjust. This was the Arctic region of the mountain, a barren, lifeless area covered in ice and rock. At this altitude the oxygen is half that of sea level. And we would feel the effect of that greater tonight than any other night.
The clouds had dropped away again revealing the surrounding mountainside, enormous trees called giant scenacios, dotted the landscape, strange exotic shapes that made you feel like you were on the set of Jurassic Park.
It was like scuba diving, something about being alone in the vastness of nature that makes you feel very small and very alive. Soon, the cloud closed in on us and the beautiful view was replaced with grey, which mirrored the approaching mood.
Will Gadd doesn't have a 9-5 job. If his current job had a title it would read “Professional Ice Climber”. He is also paraglider
I called to Dan and Lauren to bring the camera over as the monkey lazily flopped down out of the tree and into the grass to start grazing. I think seeing any animal in it's natural habitat is always unforgettable but this was brilliant. I felt like Dian Fossey.
The flight to Kilimanjaro was an eventful one. On the first flight to Nairobi, Lauren, Dan and I may have consumed a little bit too much alcohol. I won't go into details but it involved sleepwalk mugging of a fellow passenger, six sick bags and a nose bleed.
I should be more excited but the tiredness is keeping my emotions at bay. It's probably a good thing. As Sunday draws closer and we buy final bits and pieces to add to the ever expanding kit the challenge we have set ourself is clear. We are about to embark on one of the toughest, most exhilarating moments of our lives.