A north Cumbrian man will begin his 1000th climb of a Lake District fell on Monday to raise money for charity.
Steve Hartley, from the Caldbeck area, began climbing the 1,500ft Carrock Fell in the northern Lakes in 2013.
At the beginning the 69-year-old aimed to make 100 ascents each year – the equivalent to climbing Mount Everest from sea level five times.
Now, almost a decade later, Steve is set to mark his milestone climb by raising money for the hospice which has helped care for his wife Jan, who has Multiple Sclerosis (MS), over a number of years.
Mr Hartley, who is retired but is a full-time carer for Jan, said: “Over the years, Eden Valley Hospice has provided great support to Jan through their Day Services for people with life limiting diseases.
"They have also provided respite breaks from time to time, giving me the opportunity to have short periods away from home.
He added: “The hospice provides much more than palliative care which is the role that most people perceive.
"It also provides physical and emotional support to family members impacted by life-limiting conditions.”
The walks up Carrock Fell take Steve just over an hour to do, barring any injuries or illness.
After this last climb, he hopes he might be able to start walking up a different mountain.
Mr Hartley said: “We used to be keen hill walkers in the past until MS took away Jan’s physical abilities.
“Given my caring role, going out for all-day climbing adventures has become impractical and Carrock Fell is both a good climb, a workout, and can be done without disrupting her care for too long.”
“Covid-19 has put paid to several of the hospice functions and has also impacted on its ability to raise funds for its vital activities. I saw achieving my goal as an opportunity to repay the hospice in some modest way.”
Mr Hartley has raised more than £5000 for the hospice.
Day Services at Eden Valley Hospice support people with life limiting illnesses.
They offer a range of support, including symptom control, holistic care, care support, advanced care planning, medical and nursing assessment, and therapies such as reiki, massage, and acupuncture.
Want a quick and expert briefing on the biggest news stories? Listen to our latest podcasts to find out What You Need To know...