Swapping Epworth for Sahara desert

Intrepid adventurer Sarah Withers will be well out of her comfort zone when she swaps the chilly streets of Epworth for the sun drenched Sahara desert in September.

Tuesday, 5th February 2019, 16:47 pm
Updated Thursday, 7th February 2019, 16:47 pm
Sarah Withers in the cockpit of the Notts and Lincs Air Ambulance

However, the 44 year-old will not be alone as she will be joined by her husband Graeme, 55, and around 22 others as they cover 20KM a day and a total of 100 KM across the Sahara desert to raise vital funds for the North Notts and Lincs Air Ambulance Service.

Sarah has lived in Epworth since the age of 19 and admits that the nearest she has come to the sand dunes of North Africa is a beach holiday, so she doesn’t know quite what to expect when she faces a sea of endless sand.

She told the Bells of how she is preparing to face the 100 KM journey by foot: “I have been walking but that has been in Castleton, over the Humber Bridge, Clayworth to Rhetford and a 14 mile trek in the Lake District, but I can’t imagine that will be much like the Sahara Desert.”

Preparing for the Saharan charity trek

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

She added: “I enjoy walking but this will be a tough challenge. We will be sleeping in a tent each night under the stars and, of course, there will be no running water or any other modern facilities.

“We have to ensure we take enough water with us each day and we will have a camel support team and someone from the local area cooking a meal for us at the end of each day, but I can imagine it will still be quite a trial.”

The journey will see Sarah and her fellow trekers flying to Marrakech, Morocco, then taking a journey to Ouarzazate to begin their trek. It will see her wild camping among the dunes of Chigaga.

She will also witness the sun set from the 580m high Erg Zaher, the largest dune in the region and experience the minimalist existence and solitude of nomadic desert life. 

At the end of the journey she said she looked forward to relaxing in Marrakech. Sarah is currently raising £1,200 . She has raised around half that amount so far and needs to raise the rest before July. To help her raise the funds go to her  www.justgiving.com/fundraising/sarah-withers9 My Just Giving page.