Baz battles altitude sickness in Kilimanjaro climb

PUBLISHED: 13:51 19 August 2008 | UPDATED: 11:02 17 June 2010

Baz Breadmore

Baz Breadmore

A MAN with a list of 50 things to do before he is too old, has just climbed Mount Kilimanjaro for charity.

A MAN with a list of 50 things to do before he is too old, has just climbed Mount Kilimanjaro for charity.

Baz Breadmore, 71, of Water Lane, Sidmouth, reached 16,500 feet in four days, only overcome by altitude problems in the final push for the summit.

For his efforts he hopes to collect around £500 through sponsorship for Children's Hospice South West.

Baz, who returned home on Sunday, lost a lung from a bronchial disease when just two, and got medical advice before setting out on challenge 28 of his list.

He was not the only one to miss reaching the top of the old volcano near the equator in Tanzania. Only nine of the 16 in the group managed the night-time climb over loose shale.

He said: "I got altitude sickness, I couldn't get enough oxygen into my body and didn't have any energy. I got so giddy the guide had to take me down.

"It was the toughest thing I have ever done, walking the last day for 12 hours at altitude up a damn great hill."

"Born-again batchelor" Baz, who retired to Sidmouth nearly three years ago from Reading, was amazed at the extremes in temperature, going from searing heat to freezing cold in minutes.

"We had to carry a big pack and I think tablets were the heaviest equipment."

Climbing in the French Alps to 6,500 feet beforehand helped get him fit, but not used to high altitudes.

"I was really disappointed I didn't get to the top but I did pretty well," said Baz, who was oldest in the group.

"When I got back to base camp I flopped into my tent and slept with my legs outside and my head torch still on."

Five local guides and 32 porters, carrying "unbelievable" packs on their backs, accompanied the group, which later visited the Serengeti.

Over the years Baz has raised £48,000 for smaller charities and plans to hang up his boots when he reaches £50,000.

As for that list, he said: "I have never been to America and I want to see a musical on Broadway. I would also like to go to Machu Picchu or Nepal.

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