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108 %
raised of £1,500 target
by 43 supporters
Simon Nicholl avatar
Simon Nicholl

Thunder On The Mountain!

cycling up some 'orrible Alpine & Pyrenean climbs for North West Air Ambulance because they need money to keep flying and saving lives.

108 %
raised of £1,500 target
by 43 supporters
  • Event: Haute Route & Raid Pyrenean, 19 Aug 2012 to 31 Aug 2012

North West Air Ambulance

We provide rapid treatment 365 days a year to save lives and improve patient outcomes

Charity Registration No. 1075641


Hello Again,

Give me two minutes to ramble on about the next two-wheeled challenge, please...
Last year's effort was the spin across America which went well: you raised £8000 for Mamillan Cancer Relief and Trinity House Hospice. Good on you.

The 2012 plan is simple: to cycle the eleven worst days of the Tour de France! Like I said, simple but far from easy, as you can see at blog.

The aim is to benefit the North West Air Ambulance and also Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research. This page is for the Air Ambulance.

For every £500 raised, I will cough-up £100: go on and cause me some financial heartache!

Put bluntly, the purpose of the North West Air Ambulance is to respond to any incidents where access would affect time to respond by conventional ambulance and thus endanger the casualty.
The almost unbelievable fact is that this vital service receives almost zero state funding: the NWAA relies on the generosity of the people that it is there to help: all 8 million of them!

The challenge for me is way, way worse than the 33 days behind bars of a year ago. This time we go to ride up the mountains of The Alps and Pyrenees i.e. the worst bits of the Tour de France, starting on Sunday 19th August. I've heard it might be a tad warm at that time of year!

Anyone who has followed the Tour de France or suffered a coach transfer to a ski resort will know just how bloody long and unrelenting these climbs are. Names like Alpe d'Huez, D'Aubisque, Tourmalet, Hautacam, Luz-Ardiden are enough to raise a sweat without even leaving your seat!

 - We climb 120,000 feet over the 11 days. That is more than the pussies in the 2012 Tour de France will climb in 21 days!

- In 11 days we cycle over 330 uphill miles at an average 8% gradient: that's the same distance as London to Glasgow!

- To put some perspective on all this, Mount Everest stands at 29000 feet, and a mile is 5280 feet. All bad, all bad...

That's not the worst of it either: the Alpine 'jaunt' runs from Geneva and ends in Nice six days later and is timed with a cut-off point for those beer'n'pie-loving tourists amongst us. Em, is it me or is it warm in here?

Actually, it does get worse again: there will be an online facility for you good people to track and scoff at my (lack of) progress during that awful first week. Details will follow in my blog...

After collapsing in Nice and being revived by an ice cold 1664 or similar, we then drive over 500 miles on the 'rest' day to begin the second bit of this beasting in the Western Pyrenees near The Atlantic, only to end almost at The Mediterranean five days later. Once again, 1664 or similar may well feature...

Basically what we are doing are shortened legs of the worst stages of Le Tour for eleven days. This is no picnic by anyone's standards so please, please see if you are able to make it all worthwhile with a donation: you can do it in person, by post, online or by text.

For every £500 raised, I will cough-up £100: go on and cause me some financial heartache!

Text, did I hear you say? Why yes indeed Sir...

Your text would look something like this: TOTM99 £5 and you send it to 70070. The amount that you kindly donate then is either added to your phone bill or taken off your PAYG balance accordingly.

There is no charge for the text and you don't pay VAT on your donation either, so it really is win-win!

Right, now for some small-print blah:

1) JustGiving won't flog or share your details.

2) JG will send all of your donation to the North West Air Ambulance without any delay.

3) They will make sure that they reclaim GiftAid on every eligible donation (i.e. a U.K. taxpayer), so please do tick that option if you can.

4) I'll be trying to keep a blog going at 

5) Please visit my other page at to help Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research to beat blood cancers. Two of the most chilling words there are.

6) Bless you! 

Once again, for every £500 raised, I will cough-up £100: go on and cause me some financial heartache!


  • Team Lanterne Rouge's fan club. Oh dear.
  • A rare break from training. Honest.
  • That's nutrition taken care of. Result! +8