A teenager has braved freezing and wet conditions to scale Ben Nevis five times within 24 hours in memory of his sister.
Abbie Main, from Elgin, died on Christmas Day last year when she was just 15 after losing her battle with a rare form of cancer.
At the weekend, her big brother Cameron reached the snow-topped peak of the UK’s highest mountain five times while wind-chill temperatures plummeted to -12C to raise cash for the charity set up in her honour.
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Friends joined the Stirling University sports science student, who is also an eager triathlon participant, for the back-to-back climbs, which was brought forward to avoid 100mph winds during the worst of yesterday’s treacherous conditions.
However, eventually the 18-year-old had to call the challenge off early at about 7.30am yesterday after being forced to shelter from the elements at the summit for nearly three hours.
More than £6,000 has already been raised from the challenge for Abbie’s Sparkle Foundation, which was devised by the teenager herself to support other children and their families battling cancer.
Regular fuel stops were set up through the day to provide nutritious meals of rice and beans in order to keep Mr Main fuelled during the huge endurance event.
Meanwhile, other walkers planning to climb the slopes applauded the former Elgin Academy pupil as he completed his descents at the foot of Ben Nevis.
During training runs ahead of the weekend the teenager was able to complete the climbs in about two hours – but he deliberately slowed himself at the weekend in order to make it to the end of the challenge.
Last night, Mr Main explained his whole body was aching from his efforts.
He added: “It would have been good to keep it going but the weather was pretty brutal. It was just too dangerous in the end to keep going.
“I’m not going to lie, I nearly cried twice. Once during the fourth climb when I was beginning to fall behind while coming down and then in the morning for the fifth I felt awful.
“I managed to hold it together though. It was just as emotionally tough as physically tough, maybe more so.”
Donations can still be made online at www.virginmoneygiving.com/BenNevisChallenge4