Everest in Edmonton takes big steps to raise money to fight cancer

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Two friends from Edmonton have turned their enjoyment of hiking into fundraising and raising awareness for the fight against cancer.

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“I said, ‘How far is the base of Everest from the top?’ and we figured it out and it was 44.5 kilometers, so that’s exactly what we simulated in the city of Edmonton for our charity,” said Mark Pavelich, who along with Shonn Oborowsky is a co-founder of Everest in Edmonton.

This 58,750-step hike uses trails from Hawrelak Park, downtown Edmonton and the river valley to create the distance to the summit of Everest for the event, which takes place Feb. 26 .

“We call it the coolest charity on the planet because, as you know as an Edmontonian, that third week in February could mean -40 C or -10 C,” Pavelich said.

This is only the second year of this event. Last year, participants managed to raise $13,000 for breast cancer research and this year they hope to raise as much as possible for the fight against multiple myeloma cancer. Every penny raised goes directly to Myeloma Canada.

Pavelich said they don’t have a set goal other than raising more money than last year and beating the time set last year. Last year the hike took about eight hours. This year, he says, he would like to do it in seven years.

“Our charity is not for a specific type of cancer. We’re for all cancers, we’ll do a different cancer every year, we probably won’t repeat a cancer,” Pavelich said.

Anyone who thinks they can walk that distance or just want to donate can visit everestinémonton.com