Southwater man completes 151 mile trek of the Sahara

JPCT 240412  Lynden Kemp - completed the Marathon de Sable (marathon of the sands) for Make a Wish, through the Sahara Desert. Photo by Derek Martin
JPCT 240412 Lynden Kemp - completed the Marathon de Sable (marathon of the sands) for Make a Wish, through the Sahara Desert. Photo by Derek Martin

A SOUTHWATER man trekked 151 miles across the Sahara Desert to raise money for children fighting life-threatening illnesses.

Lynden Kemp, of Netherton Close, experienced sand storms, hail, heavy showers and 51 degree heat while taking part in the Marathon des Sables for the Make a Wish Foundation last month.

The 40-year-old, who is half way to meeting his £1,250 target, said: “I have always done stuff for Make A Wish, but I wanted to do something different.

“My wife thought it was a mid-life crisis, but it’s been a fantastic opportunity to see scenery of Africa. It was absolutely undulating.

“I’ve got children and I think Make A Wish does fantastic work for seriously ill kids.

“I went out there on my own and there were 860 starters. I was there for 12 days, six days doing the trek.”

He spent months preparing for the event, but nothing prepared him for the true Saharan climate.

The father-of-two said: “I did a lot of cross country training and a couple of half marathons. It was 51 degrees.

“My parents live by the sea so I went to the beach and ran through the sand.”

The weather was an experience in itself. Some nights were so cold they could see the air as they breathed and other nights it was too warm to wear a blanket.

He said: “On day we had heavy hail and rain for about half an hour. It was torrential and then slowly stopped and the sun came out again.

“We had a sand storm and we woke up covered in sand and you just get on with it.”

He has raised £620 so far for the charity, which grants wishes to children and young people aged three to 17 who are suffering terminal or life threatening conditions.

To help him meet his £1,250 target go to www.justgiving.com/Lynden-KEMP