Colin takes on hike challenge after knee-op

A pensioner who underwent a knee replacement before fracturing his other knee has completed a gruelling walking challenge for charity.

Thursday, 24th November 2016, 3:59 pm
Updated Tuesday, 29th November 2016, 10:27 am
Colin Watts, who walked a 20-mile challenge after having a knee replacement and fracturing his other knee. Pictured with his daughter and grandchildren.

Colin Watts, 73, from Birstall, managed to complete the 20-mile rough terrain challenge with members of his family, hiking from Pateley Bridge to Scar House Reservoir.

The walk was to help mark the 60th anniversary of the Duke of Edinburgh Awards, in which Colin had achieved the gold award back in the 1960s while serving with the RAF.

Named the Diamond Challenge, the event proved a personal feat for Colin, who had one knee replaced in April then damage his other in an accident in the summer.

During that time he had to use walking sticks to help him get back on his feet.

He said: “I first had the idea of crocheting a few table mats or baking some buns to sell at the local Women’s Institute but when I mentioned this to the family and they said ‘No Dad, let’s do an expedition like you did for the awards’.

“I’ve not walked this distance for a long time, the usual walk I do just a couple of miles.

“To prepare for it I spent a few weeks going out every other day, walking around our local parks and walks - but the 
furthest I went was 10 kilometres.”

Accompanied by his daughter Rachel and two of his grandchildren, James and Lucinda, the walk took two days and involved carrying rucksacks full of camping equipment.

“The first day was okay but the second was hard because a lot of it was uphill, we didn’t take the easy route,” added Colin.

“I certainly knew about it when I’d finished, I had a couple of days recuperating before going anywhere after that.”

Had he raised £60, he would have received the Duke of Edinburgh diamond pin.

But Colin’s efforts certainly paid off, after he helped raise more than £600 for the scheme.