BY ALEX WAITE
A video producer, who suffered from depression and was unable to leave his house last year, has started a challenge to climb a country’s top 10 highest mountains.
Thomas Palmer, 29 from Balham, was inspired to tackle his own personal challenge after meeting Ross Edgley, the first person to swim around Britain.
The pair met when he was filming a documentary, the Great British Swim, and was inspired by Mr Edgley’s positive words as they spoke together while eating fish and chips on a boat in Grimsby.
Mr Palmer will travel 3,400 miles through Colombia, South America, and will climb the equivalent of Mount Kilimanjaro three times, despite having no previous knowledge or experience of climbing, navigating or mountaineering.
He is also unable to speak the language and will face dangerous wildlife, altitude sickness and active volcanoes during his 30-day journey.
Mr Palmer said: “I was having quite a tough time last year and had lost all direction. I remember being stuck in the port at Grimsby with Ross and one thing he said stayed with me.
“He said ‘approach your goals with so much passion that you forget to ask what’s possible’.
“It was that chat that inspired me to have my own crazy adventure, and I’ve always loved Colombia so it just seemed the right thing to do.
“In all honesty I don’t even know if it’s logistically possible. But I guess in a way I’m trying to prove that you
don’t have to be an ultra-athlete or someone with a ton of money to just go out there and take on a life-
Thomas’ mum, Marina Palmer, said: “What Thomas is doing is a testament to the person he is.
“He obviously went through a difficult period in his life but I hope what he achieves with this inspires others to take on what they thought may have been impossible.
“We can’t wait to have him back but if it means it takes him that extra bit longer to reach the last summit we’ll gladly wait.”
Mr Palmer has taken on the challenge with Red Bull Media House and will be writing a weekly diary and making weekly vlogs to film his journey.