Day 1 - Saturday, 28th March

Depart Glasgow (1125) on a morning flight to Amsterdam (arriving 1400) connecting with flight to Beijing (1740). Arrive in Beijing Sunday morning (0955).

Day 2 - Sunday, 29th March

Meet the Trek Guides and transfer to the Hotel Yuyang. Lunch followed by a tour of Tiananmen Square. Welcome dinner and briefing in the evening.

Day 3 - Monday, 30th March

The Great Wall of China Trek begins! Check out early and transfer by coach to Juyong Guan Pass. Today's trek will be around 2 to 3 hours in a circuit, which is tough going and steep in places. From the high points of the Wall views of misty mountains fade far into the distance. Lunch at a local restaurant and transfer to the Changping Hotel for the next two nights.

Day 4 - Tuesday, 31st March

Another early breakfast before departing for the Dayingpan area of the Great Wall. This section of the wall was built around 1520 during the Ming Dynasty. A very varied day of trekking along the wall and through fields. Lunch at a restaurant en-route to the hotel. (4 -5 hours)

Day 5 - Wednesday, 1st April

Early check-out and transfer through stunning rural countryside to Mutianyu. Trek up steep stairs to reach the entrance gate of the Great Wall trekking to tower 14 on reconstructed wall and continuing for another 6 or 7 towers on wild wall. For the final steep descent there will be the option to try the 'luge' - a 1000 ft from top to bottom! Some free time in Mutianya before transferring to the Shi Hao International Hotel for 2 nights. (5 hours)

Day 6 - Thursday, 2nd April

Transfer to the Black Dragon Pool Park where we spend the day trekking past gorges, waterfalls and pools, leading us up steep inclines to reach a section of wild wall. Lunch is a picnic by a temple. Today's trek is steep in places and at times very tough going, but punctuated with stunning scenery and a temple in the sky. (6 -7 hours)

Day 7 - Friday, 3rd April

A well-earned free morning and a late check out! Lunch en route to Simitai. After 2 - 3 hours in the coach check-in to the Simitai Lodge. Optional 2 hour walk up to the entrance of the Simitai Wild Wall where there are incredible views of 135 watchtowers at one time.

Day 8 - Saturday, 4th April

The last day of the Challenge! Trek for around 5 hours from Simitai to Jinshanling with views of China on one side and Mongolia on the other. A wonderful day of trekking in which around 15 towers are truely Wild Wall. Emotions run high as the group takes its final steps off the Wall and the challenge comes to an end. The transfer back to Beijing is 2 - 3 hours with a western dinner en route to the Yuyang Hotel.

Day 9 - Sunday, 5th April

Free day with the option of visiting the Forbidden City and the Silk Market. Celebration dinner at the legendary Peking Duck Restaurant.

Day 10 - Monday, 6th April

Homeward bound! Transfer by coach to the airport for the morning flight (1140) to Amsterdam. Arrive in Amsterdam (1555) for early evening (2105) connection to Glasgow (arrive 2140).

Featured Trekkers

Chris McMail

Started Microtech 23 years ago, March 1986, not really sure if I will stick it!

Microtech provides IT Products and Services to both GP Practices throughout Scotland and a wide range of corporate organisations.

I live in Seamill and have been married to my beautiful wife Anne for 16 years and have two kids, Caitlin (9) and Nicole (5). Caitlin is in P5 at West Kilbride Primary and Nicole will start there in August.

Anne is actively trying to restore consumer confidence and sees the overdraft as a target rather than a limit, which she easily reaches every month. Whilst really looking forward to this adventure I am not looking forward to being away from my family for 10 days or having to make amends! Massive thanks to Anne for supporting me and tolerating the visits to the gym and 3 hour training walks.

The Ayrshire Hospice has been our nominated charity for a number of years and training for the trek has been a good excuse to get (reasonably) fit.

Graham Kirkwood

I work for Bridgend Garage at our Irvine site which specialise in Mitsubishi Motors. I have worked for the for 31 years full time and a few years part time before that. Married for 15 yrs to Jacqueline have a daughter Zara aged 4 and 1/2 going to school in August this year. Lived in Irvine for 11 years now but both of us originally from Kilwinning. Jacqueline works for Scottish Power in Bellshill.

No hobbies but we all love to travel long-haul as often as possible. Have done work for the hospice for some 10 years now.

John McCallum

Live in Seamill and have been happily married to Kathleen for the past 16 years. We have two fantastic kids Nathan (9 )and Elise (7) who keep us busy.

Left the Pearl Assurance rat race after 14 years and set up an independent financial consultancy in West Kilbride JMC Financial Services in 2003, Love life, fun, fast cars, red wine and cultivate my autistic tendencies (or so Kathleen says) by being passionate about anything I do.

Think the hospice is a great charity and I am delighted to raise money for them at any opportunity, although on this occasion the list of shopping requests in Silk Alley may make a dent in my pocket and suitcase. Guess the tolerance of my alarm at 6am to go to the gym has its price!

I would like to thank everyone who has sponsored me for their generosity and hope I can count on it again for Kilimanjaro in February 2010.

Stewart Lindsay

I have been happily married now to Ann for 30 years and we have 3 fantastic children, Sharon, Craig & Iain who have all made both of us very proud.
We also have 2 dogs Lucy & Jax who have both walked as many practise miles as I have. Unfortunately, the goldfish can’t come on my practise walks.

I am self employed and I have worked in the Petrochemicals & Oil & Gas industry for most of my working life, spending much of that time offshore on various installations and projects. I have more recently spent my working life in foreign climes including Norway, Holland, UAE, Philippines & Azerbayjan and am about to take up another challenge in Algeria after completion of the Great Wall of China Trek. It’s a great way to see the world and appreciate other peoples cultures.

For much of my life I have been involved with The Boys’ Brigade in Stevenston and finally Kilwinning as Captain.

This “China Trek” as it has affectionately become known will be a first for me and I am not really sure why it particularly prompted me to “do it”. I guess all you have to do is take a trip across to the Hospice and see the peace and tranquillity that is abound there and perhaps you can understand why it is so important to many people. I have been amazed at the response that I have received whilst working towards my fundraising goal. I have run a Football Coupon which has raised the lions share of my sponsorship.
Along with a Supper Dance late last year, sponsorship within my current work location and some very generous family & friends, this fundraising experience has been a very enjoyable one.

Thanks very much to everyone who has sponsored and supported me, I promise I will try not to let you down.

Justine Cullen

I live in Ayr and have worked as a Fundraiser for the Ayrshire Hospice for the last 5 years and volunteered 10 years prior. I was nominated by Louis Jardine, Fundraising Manager to organise and undertake this exciting challenge - the reason for this could be because I am the fitness fanatic of the office and visit the gym regularly. Wish the Great Wall of China was on the flat and I could run as the thought of all these steps makes me cringe just a bit!

There are 30 trekkers in our group including myself. We have undertaken practice walks over the last few months and I now think the Carrick Hills was dawdle compared to what we’ve let ourselves in for.

I would like to say a BIG BIG thank you to all the trekkers for their commitment and dedication to The Ayrshire Hospice and a special thank you to all who have supported them. I am a Fundraiser at heart and will always try to seek out donations so on a personal note I would also like to thank my family and friends for their support and to let them know that they can stop dodging me now!