A team of 33 bike riders from across the transport and logistics industry has completed a challenging 500km+ ride across northern Tanzania to raise over £129,000 for Transaid.
The group - including SHD Logistics Editor Peter MacLeod - arrived safely back in Europe at the weekend after the week-long adventure.
The challenge was immense, as it was exacerbated by some quite hot conditions, making the going soft and sandy during several of the off-road legs.
The total distance covered was some 515km - the equivalent distance from London would take you to Carlisle - and the total height climbed was 5.16km - almost four times the height of Ben Nevis.
All riders completed the challenge, although one member of the group did break a collarbone in a nasty fall virtually within touching distance of the finish line on the final day. "Other than that, there was the usual array of bumps and scrapes, but above all a tremendous feeling of elation," says Peter MacLeod, whose efforts raised over £5,500 for Transaid. "I have to say, after the first test leg when we had a short run to check that our bikes were in order, I felt as if I had bitten off more than I could chew. But with such a supportive group around me offering technical, physical and moral advice, the week became more enjoyable as the challenges stacked up.
"At the start of the week, during our breaks we would hear 'God, that was awful,' whereas towards the end we'd be much more likely to hear 'I enjoyed that climb'.
"From a personal perspective, I have learned a lot about myself and my capabilities, and feel considerably more connected to my physical make-up than ever before in my life. From a professional viewpoint, I had the opportunity to see first-hand the issues that Transaid is working hard to rectify in the region, notably the training and licencing of HGV, PSV and fork lift truck drivers.
"I had the great privilege of meeting Zacharia Mgnilwa of Tanzania's National Institute of Transport, who works with Transaid to increase transport safety in the country, and will carry his words with me as I travel through the UK meeting logistics professionals."
Donations are still extremely welcome, and will all go towards Transaid's vital work in sub-Saharan Africa and other regions where transportation and logistics issues require an immediate injection of knowledge or an improvement in infrastructure. To contribute to Transaid's work in these logistics-related areas, please visit https://www.justgiving.com/Peter-MacLeod1/
Please read Peter's Cycle Tanzania blog for his reflections on the challenge.
Peter MacLeod wishes to thank the following for their kind support:
Palletways (for sponsoring his outfit with a considerable donation)
Crown Lift Trucks (for a generous donation)
SSI Schaefer (for a generous donation)
Flexi Narrow Aisle (for a generous donation)
IMHX 2016 (for a generous donation)
Cooper Specialised Handling (for a generous donation)
SEC Storage (for a donation, T-shirt and considerable online support)
John Moylan of Reva (for working pro bono on the blog website)
His many colleagues at Informa for their individual donations
His many friends and contacts across the industry for their donations and words of encouragement