At the ice-cold summit of Mount Kilimanjaro, the drama of Tanzania’s dusty plains stretching below, and a gruelling trek behind: a poignant moment for many to pause to think of those left at home.

But while most who conquer Africa’s tallest mountain must wait to celebrate their achievement with nearest and dearest, Ryan Kidd plans to reach the top with his family right by his side.

For joining him every step of the way on next week’s gruelling seven-day trek to the 20,000ft summit, will be his parents, Stevie and Lesley.

Ryan, 24, will take on Kilimanjaro just weeks after climbing 10 of Scotland’s highest mountains back-to-back in an epic charity challenge that spanned a continuous 34-hour stretch.

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That mammoth effort saw him raise more than £14,000 for The UK Sepsis Trust in memory of his late father-in-law Iain Carroll who died from the condition in 2018.

But the Kilimanjaro hike will be the first time the family has taken on a significant climb together – and one of the first high climbs mum, Lesley, 56, has ever made.

The Kidd family, from Paisley, are travelling to Africa this weekend, with plans to set off on Monday on the first stage of their Mount Kilimanjaro trek.

They will hike and camp out together, on the challenging journey up to the summit and back down again.

The route up to the summit can be particularly arduous, as temperatures drop significantly as walkers head further uphill and oxygen levels dip raising the risks of altitude sickness causing headaches, nausea, dizziness and fatigue.

The unusual family outing will see all three tackle the peak for different charities, all under the umbrella of dad Stevie’s motivational coaching business, the Stevie Kidd Pathway.

The Herald: The climb would support Kilimanjaro Porters Association and the Msamaria orphanageThe climb would support Kilimanjaro Porters Association and the Msamaria orphanage (Image: Kidd Family)

It’s the first time mum Lesley, 56, dad Stevie, 53, and son Ryan have all embarked on such a gruelling climb together.

Ryan said: “I’m looking forward to taking this on with my mum and day by my side.

“I’ve always had a close relationship with my mum and dad, and I expect it will be an emotional experience for all of us to reach the top, together.”

Last month Ryan achieved a Ten Peak Challenge that saw him cover Ben Nevis, Beinn a'Chleibh, Ben Dubhcraig, Ben Lui, Ben Oss, Beinn Ime, Beinn Narnain, The Cobbler, Ben Vorlich and Ben Vane over the course of just 34-hours.

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He is taking on the Kilimanjaro trek as part of his own progression through his dad’s Reach Your Peak coaching programme, which aims to help business leaders develop personal and workplace skills.

The five-month programme includes three endurance phases, including the Kilimanjaro trek. The family will be accompanied by a dozen business leaders from across Europe who have taken part in the coaching programme.

Although it is dad Stevie’s fourth time on Mount Kilimanjaro, his last trek there ended in disappointment when he fell ill to altitude sickness just 500m from the summit, and had to be stretchered back downhill.

But he says he is hopeful of overcoming that this time around, so he can share the experience of reaching the summit with his wife and son.

“It will be that extra bit special having my wife and son on the journey,” he said.

“It’s rainy season there just now and it will be cold. We know the biggest challenge is the final stretch as we head for the summit.

“I tell everyone that they’ll probably be unwell, they need to accept that it will be uncomfortable, but it will pass.

“And once people have reached a peak like this, they become much more aware of the challenging realities in their own lives.”

Lesley, who works with the family business, said she was motivated to attempt the trek after witnessing the positive impacts on people who had undertaken previous trips.

She is raising funds for the Brightest Star charity, which supports bereaved families, while the trek will also benefit Finding Your Feet, a charity which helps those affected by amputation and missing limbs.

It will also support the Kilimanjaro Porters Association and the Msamaria orphanage, which provides support and care to street children, orphans, families and communities living in the shadow of the mountain by delivering vital food and clothing.

Lesley said: “I am proud to be doing this as a family.  

“We as a family are always thinking of others, so raising money for others to benefit and challenge myself at the same time resonated with me.” 

The Herald: A previous trip to support projects near KilimanjaroA previous trip to support projects near Kilimanjaro (Image: Kidd Family)

The family and their fellow hikers are due to reach the summit of 5895-metre high Kilimanjaro next Saturday.

Later this year, Stevie and Ryan plan another ‘father and son’ outing, this time to Everest base camp.

Ryan added: “According to those who have done it before, the expedition to Tanzania is a very spiritual experience and I’m really looking forward to it.

“The 10-peak challenge was by far the toughest thing I have ever undertaken, both mentally and physically, but it has prepared me perfectly for Kilimanjaro.

“I’m looking forward to what promises to be a life-changing experience.”