Brothers Ben and Sam Brown are planning to replicate climbing Mount Everest by climbing Snowdon 8.2 times, to raise money for the Early Pregnancy Assessment Unit and Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital. Here, Ben explains the personal reasons behind the challenge
Who are you and what do you do when you’re not training to climb the equivalent of Everest? We are Ben and Sam, aka Team Everest Challenge 2023. We are brothers, I am a Tree Surgeon and Sam is a member of the Royal Air Force. In our spare time, we both enjoy anything adrenaline-packed like riding motorbikes, snowboarding and skiing, as well as general fitness. You know Sam is a high-level snowboarder as you’ll not go more than three minutes of meeting him without him telling you so! He is good, I’ll give him that.
When did you first have the idea for the Everest Challenge, and what’s the challenge exactly? I had the idea a year or so ago, but I put it on the back burner as I wasn’t entirely sure as to how to achieve it or who I’d convince to do it with me. I finally came up with a loose plan and pitched it to Sam and rather easily managed to convince him to do it with me. We will be ascending and descending Snowdon in Wales 8.2 times in four days to match the altitude of Mount Everest. The challenge will see us cover roughly 64 miles in the four days of the challenge.
You’re both dads and are raising money for the Norfolk and Norwich Hospitals charity, and the Early Pregnancy Assessment Unit and Neonatal Intensive Care Unit in particular – is that something close to your heart? It is. My wife and I recently suffered a loss from what’s called a missed miscarriage. This had an impact on all of our family, so I think that’s why it was so easy to convince Sam to do this challenge with me once we had discussed the charity. The team at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital Early Pregnancy Assessment Unit were fantastic with us so I knew that they should receive any money we are kindly donated for our challenge.
How are you going to train for it over the coming months? Lots of walking – lots! We both have military experience and have done our fair share of walking in boots with weight on our back in the Welsh hills, so we have a good base standard to start training from. We will try and get to as many hilly areas as possible in the build up to the challenge to get our ‘hill legs’. Norfolk doesn’t particularly lend itself to hill training so we may have to stray from the wonderful Norfolk countryside now and again.
Will this be the first of many challenges for you both? We have both done some charity work in the past, but this is by far the biggest to date. Sam had mentioned Ben Nevis in Scotland in passing yesterday, which is worrying. So possibly some more miles in the legs in the future for some more great causes.
Ben and Sam Brown’s Everest Challenge 2023 in Snowdon, Wales, involving 64 miles, 4 days, 8.2 ascents, 8.2 descents, and 8859 metres climbed – takes place from September 29 to October 2, 2023. They are looking to raise £5000 to donate to the Early Pregnancy Assessment Unit (EPAU) and the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) to help children and families in the Norfolk and Norwich Hospital with premature infants, miscarriages and mother and family welfare. Norfolk & Norwich Hospitals Charity is dedicated to using donations and support to make a difference to patients, visitors and staff at the hospitals. To donate , visit Fundraiser by Samuel Brown : Ben and Sam’s Everest Challenge 29 Sep-02 Oct 23 (gofundme.com).
Featured image of Ben Brown and his son – supplied