An intrepid endurance rider from Wales is setting off this month for the second leg of her Long Horse Ride from Beijing to London.
Megan Lewis from North Carmarthenshire is planning to ride the 5,000 miles from the Chinese capital to London in five stages, in time for the Olympics in 2012.
Following the Olympics last summer, she left Laolongtou at the eastern end of the Great Chinese Wall on 4 October and arrived in Badaling on 23 October.
She will leave Badaling on 18 April to coincide with the second Guangting Endurance Competition in the Beijing municipality and will continue along the Ming Great Wall to its western end, hoping to arrive at Jiayuguan in early August.
Money raised during the trip will go to Chinese and British charities China Children and Teenagers Fun, Schoolchildren for Children.
The intrepid rider said: “Ever since my childhood in Malaya I have been fascinated by Asia and holidays in Carmarthenshire sparked my love for horseback expeditions.
“Now the Olympic Games are coming to the UK from China, the time is finally right for me to fulfil my long-held ambition of a long horse ride and to raise money for some fantastic charities.”
An international pony judge, Megan is being partnered by the Chinese Equestrian Association and backed by EnduranceGB (EGB) — of which she is a life member.
EGB and the British Equestrian Federation have helped her to publicise the trip, and helping to organise people to ride with her at various stages of the journey.
On this leg of the journey Megan will be accompanied by Chinese horsemen Li Jin and Peng Wenchao.
Wenchao gave up his job as a Beijing taxi driver in 2007 to ride around China with his Mongolian horses, while Jin — who lives in Moscow — has previously ridden the 6,000 miles from Votkinsk in Russia to Beijing between August 2007 and March this year.
Subsequent legs of Ms Lewis’s journey will take in the Silk Route through the Gobi desert and the Tian Shan mountains/, parts of Kazakhstan, Kyrgystan, Uzbekistan, Russia, Ukraine, the fields and forests of Europe, through France and back to Britain.
To sponsor Megan Lewis, visit www.justgiving.com/meganlonghorseride.