Reaching 19,341 feet above mean sea level was no easy feat, especially for Ethan, who just had his most recent open heart surgery in November. Slowly but surely, Ethan accomplished his mission, reaching the highest point of Africa at 6:40am on the 26th of July, 2014, via the Rongai route. Hongera sana, bwana! We would also like to congratulate Jessica, who has successfully climbed to 16,000 feet after having recovered from feeling unwell just in time to start the climb. When we asked Ethan if he had any secret strategies to get himself through the challenging climb to reach the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro, his response was “I kept repeating ‘Jessica, one, two, three, four…’ to myself to make sure that my mind was clear and that I had not succumbed to altitude sickness”!
What made this climb extra special was the fundraising efforts by Jessica and Ethan to support a non-profit organization called Vision for the Poor. Through their climb, the Independent Travel Cats were able to raise money to fund sight-saving surgeries, purchase medical equipment and eyeglasses for poor children living in remote areas. Well done, Jessica and Ethan!