Yorkshire to Morocco

Ian Chappell


On 17th of June 2017, Ian Chappell will start the biggest challenge of his life. He has twice completed the gruelling multi-day, ultra distance Marathon Des Sables and the Gobi Challenge across the Gobi Desert in Mongolia.

Ian plans to run from the highest point in Yorkshire (Whernside 794m) to the highest point in Morocco, North Africa (Jbel Toukbal 4167m).

With an overall distance of around 2000 miles Ian will run from Yorkshire to Portsmouth, England; Caen to the French Pyrenees, crossing into Spain and running across Spain to Algeciras on the south coast near Gibraltar. He will cross to Tangier, Morocco and run south through the Rif Mountains, the Middle Atlas to the High Atlas where he will finish his run on the summit of Jbel Toubkal.

Ian will not have a support team with him. He will carry equipment to allow for a period of self- sufficiency and rely on resupplying as he travels.

A Yorkshireman, Ian is the NE Regional Commissioner for The Scout Association and is an expedition leader with Central Yorkshire County Scouts (CYCS) which covers the metropolitan areas of Leeds and Wakefield. He is Vice Chairman of Yorkshire Schools Exploring Society (YSES), a charity that provides expeditions for schoolchildren aged 14 years to 19 years in education in Yorkshire. Ian is a member of Horsforth Harriers, his local running club.

Ian said “ I wanted to undertake an extreme challenge and use it as a means of supporting local, national and international charities that are aligned to my volunteer work. The Yorkshire Air Ambulance, which receives no government funding, and provides swift emergency care for the people of Yorkshire and the Humber; the Alzheimers Society, a charity that The Scout Association is in partnership with and of which I am a Dementia Friend and the Children of the Sahara Foundation that provides support to young children and women in Morocco and for whom I have supported project work with Central Yorkshire Scouts.”

Ian will celebrate his 58th birthday in July 2017 whilst running somewhere in Spain, he said “Many will question why I’m doing this. I have always been a runner and enjoy the sport. I am not an elite athlete, just someone with determination. I believe that you have to occasionally step out of your comfort zone and test yourself; age is no barrier to that”.