Wednesday, August 17, 2005

RHINO CLIMB 2006 - Hitchhiking Kilimanjaro with The Adams Family


Some years ago Douglas Adams wrote The Hitchhiker's Guide to the
Galaxy, a story about the world being unexpectedly demolished by
hideous creatures from another planet. It was meant as a joke... Now,
animal by animal, tree by tree, the world is being demolished around
us; not by Vogons, or people from other planets, but by humans.

Douglas decided it was time to think about the absurdities of life on
Earth, and what we are doing to it, and so wrote “Last Chance to See,”
a book chronicling his journey around the world looking for animals on
the brink of extinction.

Then in 1994 Douglas joined Save the Rhino International on their first
Kilimanjaro Challenge to help raise money and awareness of the plight
of the worlds few remaining rhinos. A founder Patron of the charity,
Douglas continued actively supporting their work until his untimely
death in 2001.

Now, in Douglas’ memory his sister and brother, Jane and James Thrift
are preparing to take on the challenge of Africa’s highest peak, and
Climb Mount Kilimanjaro, all 19,340 feet of it. The aim of the
expedition is to carry on Douglas’ work in raising money and awareness
for Save the Rhinos crucial projects in Africa.

Douglas had many interests, and like everything in his life, he never
did things by halves. His passion for music led to him owning 26 left
handed guitars, and a place on stage with Pink Floyd for his 42nd
birthday, for computers saw him become an Applemaster and inveterate
authority on ways in which technology should be integrated into our
lives, and on conservation to be described by Mark Carwardine, world
renowned zoologist and co-author of "Last Chance to See" as " the
person who has done more for wildlife conservation than anyone else I

James Thrift said, "Douglas' passion for things was infectious, and I
suppose that is why I can no longer sit by and watch the wholesale
destruction of such a magnificent species as the Rhino that has been
around for 45 million years. For them to be virtually wiped out in
under a century is unforgivable, and for what, to make Yemeni dagger
handles. This isn't animal cruelty, it's animal genocide."

“In the last year we’ve appeared in the movie of Hitchhikers, walked
the red carpet at the premiere, so climbing Kilimanjaro was the logical
next step,” James said, adding “It’s going to be a tough climb, the
effects of altitude sickness at that height can be very unpleasant, but
if it helps raise awareness of the real effort going on in Africa to
save the rhinos then it will have been worth it.”