Couple from Skegness take plunge to conquer Three Peaks challenge

'We did it!' Turtle Tots North Lincs owners Nicolle and James Herrington at the end of the Three Peaks Challenge. ANL-170718-151035001
'We did it!' Turtle Tots North Lincs owners Nicolle and James Herrington at the end of the Three Peaks Challenge. ANL-170718-151035001
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Two baby swimming coaches from Skegness traded their costumes for walking boots and plunged straight into the challenge of walking the Three Peaks for charity.

Turtle Tots North Lincs owners Nicolle and James Herrington raised more than £300 for Macmillan Cancer Support in memory of Nicolle’s granddad who died 17 years ago.

Ready for the Three Peaks challenge. The team prepare for the ascent. ANL-170718-150628001

Ready for the Three Peaks challenge. The team prepare for the ascent. ANL-170718-150628001

James and Nicolle, who run a baby and toddler swimming programme, approached Challenge Fit UK when they saw them advertising in December and began training within a month.

They reached the start point at Ben Nevis on Saturday, July 8, joining their designated driver, personal supportive mentor, two other hikers and mountain leader to begin their ascent to the summit.

Nicolle said: “Our team stuck together and made fantastic pace while also taking in the most amazing scenery.

“Reaching the summit in just short of three hours was fantastic. All still pumped, we made our way down, which was much harder physically, and finally reached the end point within five an half hours.

It really pushed all my boundaries and made me realise what my body and mind is actually capable of

Nicolle Herrington, of Turtle Tots, on completing the Three Peaks challenge

“We were all so ecstatic to achieve something so amazing. But it was one down and two to go.

“Very little sleep and aching muscles didn’t dampen our spirt and before we knew it we were approaching our second mountain.

“Surrounded by the most spectacular scenery England has to offer, we stepped out at the foot of our trail, all very stiff and finding it hard to get our muscles working. We realised how physical this challenge is, but we cracked on.

“We saw the sun set behind us and the moon rise just as we reach the summit of Scarfell.

One down. The team at the top of Ben Nevis. ANL-170718-150930001

One down. The team at the top of Ben Nevis. ANL-170718-150930001

“Descending in the dark with only our head torches to light our path, we completed our second mountain in four hours 15 minutes.

“Before we knew it we were at our final mountain, Snowden – the one we were most excited about.

“The weather took a turn for the worst with low-lying mist and rain. Half way up, we were hungry and exhausted and the fog made the path hard to see.

“Finally, we hit the top but still had about 15 minutes walk to reach the summit.

The team at the summit of summit of Scarfell Pike. ANL-170718-150755001

The team at the summit of summit of Scarfell Pike. ANL-170718-150755001

“Suddenly this burst of energy came from nowhere and we hit our final peak.

“We all struggled down ,and one team member in particular with a badly injured knee, but we stuck together and it was mission complete – Turtle Tots North Lincs completed the National Three Peaks in 23 hours and 17 minutes.

Nicholle said: “It was the best experience of my life. It really pushed all my boundaries and made me realise what my body and mind is actually capable of a massive boost of energy and sense of living life to the full.

“We feel so proud we have achieved something so challenging! Such and honour to have been able to have done it with such a great team of people as well.”

Almost done. All smiles at the Snowdon summit. ANL-170718-150837001

Almost done. All smiles at the Snowdon summit. ANL-170718-150837001