A CARDIOLOGIST is feeling “prepared and not prepared” in the lead up to his Mount Kilimanjaro climb for Stars Appeal.

Dr Tim Wells, who has worked in cardiology at Salisbury District Hospital since 2007, will be completing the hike in Tanzania to raise money for the charity’s MRI scanner campaign.

Attempting the Lemosho route, the walk starting on January 26 will include daily walking stints of up to six hours, combatting altitude sickness, and various camping spots, finally reaching the 5895m summit, Uhuru Peak, in time to watch the sunrise.

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Dr Wells said a “midlife crisis” made him sign up to the challenge, and he will be heading to Africa next Thursday, adding: “I’m just hoping with the training I am doing it will all come together at the last minute.”

He said: “Now I’m 47 [years old] I’m just trying to tick off a few things and support Stars Appeal as I do it.

“I used to do quite a lot of things like this, so now it’s time to dust off the cobwebs.”

Volunteers will begin their climbing adventure in Moshi, and walkers will stop at camps including Mkubara, Shira, Barranco, Karanga and Barafu.

“I’ll be looking forward to that cup of tea and celebration at the top,” the cardiologist added.

Mount Kilimanjaro is the highest mountain in Africa, and Dr Wells has been training for the six-day climb by walking every day after work with varying incline levels, and adopting Dry January.

He has so far raised around £5,500 of his £7,500 target, adding: “People have been very generous, including cardiac patients, because the attraction is that the new MRI scanner would have a cardiac service, which is quite complex.”

Dr Wells said around 10,000 patients will benefit from the new scanner as they will have scans much faster, without having to travel elsewhere, and it will introduce new techniques to the team in areas including stroke and cancer diagnosis.

He added: “We wouldn’t have to transfer patients to Bournemouth and Southampton hospital anymore, so it is a very good idea to bring this service to Salisbury.”

Stars Appeal has already reached its £1million milestone towards the second MRI scanner, and is edging closer and closer to its target total of £1.5million, thanks to donations, people participating in sporting challenges, and sponsored events across the city.

To donate visit Dr Wells’ JustGiving page.