Many of us like a good walk, especially out in the open countryside. Some people like to take it to the extreme – and we’re very glad about it!

This year, two supporters from The Youth Hostels Association will be pushing their legs to the limit to raise money for a special young carer adventure.

Paul Howlett, Operations Manager North West, and Chris Edis, Operations Manager North East, are planning two big fund raising challenges.

The first, A Pennine Journey, is a 247-mile route originally walked by Alfred Wainwright in 1935, 10 years earlier than the Pennine Way. Starting at The Sill on Monday 5th of September, Paul and Chris are aiming to run 35 miles per day cross-country, finishing back at The Sill on Sunday 11th.

If that wasn’t enough, in January 2023 Paul will be joining 149 other ultra-runners at Edale to take part in the Winter Spine Race along the Pennine Way. At 268 miles over seven days, it is regarded as one of the World’s toughest endurance races!

Paul and Chris’ fundraising will pay for a week-long adventure  break for young carers at a YHA site, filled with outdoor activities and experiences that many would not normally have the opportunity to enjoy. 

Today millions of young people live challenging lives. Together we can help create unforgettable moments in amazing places, on their first big adventure. With your support we can deliver experiences that have the power to change young people’s futures. Moments where young people believe in themselves for the first time, recognise their talents and develop the ambitions that will take them on a different path through life. For the millions of young people facing poverty, disability, long-term illness and other challenges, these moments are rare.

Paul Howlett, YHA Operations Manager North West.

This isn’t Paul’s first extreme fundraiser. He’s completed many walks, runs, cycles and swims to raise money for carer projects in the North West, often with a two-stone teddy bear called Everest strapped to his back! He’s already begun this year’s challenge with a social hike around the Easedale Tarn Loop that raised £180 and plans to do more before the main event in June.

Chris is also no stranger to the great outdoors. He’s competed at a high level in fell running for fifteen years. As well as representing the North East Counties and winning the County Championships in 2017, he’s taken part in the British Fell Running Championships representing Keswick Athletic Club, who’ve won several times over recent years.

I’ve never done anything like this so a complete novice when it comes to ultra-distance. As a fell runner I specialised in the short races which were up to about 5 miles and could be as short as a mile so covering in excess of 30 miles per day is a real leap into the unknown for me. I’m definitely the one most likely to struggle with the challenge!

Chris Edis, YHA Operations Manager North East.

Just take a look at Chris and Paul's route below. I'm sure you'll agree it's pretty extreme!

September 5th - The Sill to Kirkland 38 miles
September 6th - Kirkland to Hazelgill 32.3 miles
September 7th - Hazelgill to Ingleton 37 miles
September 8th - Ingleton to Yockenthwaite 30 miles
September 9th - Yockenthwaite to Bowes 37 miles
September 10th - Bowes to Blanchland 37.7 miles
September 11th - Blanchland to The Sill 30 miles

You can donate, follow Paul and Chris’ training or join them on A Pennine Journey, at the links below. We’ll be posting regularly about their progress on our social media too!  

Paul Howlett Just Giving 

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