Ruth Hugill, 39


“The mountains became a real source of determination for me.”

Seven years ago, in March, I was diagnosed with grade 3 breast cancer. I couldn’t believe it. The lump, it was so real, and I just hit a brick wall.

I’d always enjoyed nature, loving my walking, and I thought that part of my life was going to end. But I’ve got a fantastic partner and a beautiful daughter, and once I started my treatment they got me out as much as possible.

It was such a team effort. The mountains became a real source of determination for me. At one point, I couldn’t put one foot in front of the other, it was so, so painful. So I set myself a goal to go over Striding Edge.

After six months of workouts and an organic diet, I did it and I felt like I was me again. Now, I feel healthy, fit, I’m not suffering any mental health problems, and I do think it’s fundamentally down to the mountains – getting out there, walking and being in the fresh air, meeting different people.

Every person on a mountain has their own story and you can get real inspiration from that, it’s amazing.

Oli Reed