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To cycle from John O’Groats  to Lands End in two weeks on what’s been described as  ‘THE SUICIDE ROUTE’ . This will take in 916 miles of the finest British countryside and the outskirts of Birmingham!!  


Overview of the routeSix months of extreme training with a view to actually being able to enjoy the trip ( yes Daz, you may have to get out of the bar!! )


To enjoy the ride and raise a whole load of cash for a worthwhile cause, in this case Cancer Research UK. This will mainly be from the ride itself, but other fundraising events such as raffles etc are in the pipeline with a view to maximising the amount that we can make!



John O’Groats to Balintore (94 miles)
From John O Groats following the A99 through Wick, Brora, Golspie, Dornoch & Tain. Eventually leaving the A99 onto "B" roads, which leads us into Balintore. A route that pretty much follows the coast. A maximum elevation of 160 meters. Pretty easy going according to Mr Ordinance Survey!


Day 2 - Tain to Fort WilliamBalintore to Fort William (92 miles)
An early start will see us cycle about 2 miles before we catch the Nigg Ferry to Cromarthy. Following the A832 soon brings us to the Kessock Bridge, which takes us into Inverness. Leaving Inverness on the A82 follows the long journey along side Loch Ness (last one to spot the monster buy the first pint!!!) and onto Loch Oich and Loch Lochy. The foot of Loch Lochy sees our second stop, View Field House, Fort William. Maximum elevation 130 meters towards the end of the day. Steep but scenic early on. Should be relatively easy later on due to following water levels at the Lochs.


Day 4 - Fort William to CrianlarichFort William to Crianlarich (50 miles)
Day three is short on miles, hard on hills! Leaving Fort William, and the shadow of Ben Nevis, follows the easy-going A82 eventually arriving aside Loch Leven. The fun starts when entering Glen Coe, A steady climb from 30 meters to 350 meters. We pass along side "Am Monada Dubh" (Black Mountain) and Loch Tulla before reaching our third resting place, Crianlarich. Maximum elevation 350 meters! Long ascent from Glen Coe.


Day 4 - Crianlarich to New CumnockCrianlarich to Ochiltree (86 miles)
Leaving Crianlarich sees the reward for the uphill efforts! A sharp downhill of 200 meters to sea level in about two miles! (Nice!) The journey then follows an easy gradient next to Loch Lomond before entering the hustle of Clydebank and Paisley. If we manage to hold on to our bikes through Paisley, we follow the A77 and A719 to Ochiltree. A day of steady ups and downs - maximum elevation of 230 meters. Most difficulty negotiating the busy city areas of Dumbarton, Clydebank & Paisley. Also poor road surface along Loch Lomand.


Day 5 - New Cumnock to PenrithOchiltree to Penrith (99 miles)
The end of a bloody long day sees us back in blighty! The A76 lead us into Dumfries, the A75 takes us past Annan and Gretna (where Gooner and Cuz get married!). The A74 takes us through Carlisle where we pick up the A6 to Penrith. A bloody long day (the longest so far!). A maximum elevation of 220, steady ups and downs throughout the day. Mentally challenging due to the length of the leg and the cities we pass through.


Day off!!!!!!
As a result of the previous days exertions we will be taking a well earned day off to re-charge the batteries. Two of the party of four have stayed here before when completing the Coast to Coast challenge during 2003 and it is a pleasant little town. Suggest waking up late, (about pub opening time!); leave B&B to nearest boozer! Stay there, lovely jubbly!


Day 7 - Penrith to WiganPenrith to Wigan (86 miles)
The A6 takes us out of Penrith towards Wigan. Heading towards Kendal, skirting with the Lake District National Park. Through Kendal, parallel to the M6 to Lancaster. We stay on the A6 past Garststang, Broughton and through Preston. From Preston we pass Chorley, Standish and eventually our seventh stop, Wigan. Steady day with a maximum elevation of 250 meters early on in the day, followed by a long decent into Kendal.


Day 8 - Wigan to LudlowWigan to Telford (69 miles)
Leaving the A49 out of Wigan soon brings us into Warrington. We cross the Manchester Ship Canal and on through Northwich. Remaining on the A49 takes us through Whitchurch and eventually Telford. Maximum elevation of 150 meters entering the village of Hodnet.


Telford to Chepstow (90 miles)
We leave Telford on the A4169 and B4378, through Ludlow. Onto the A49 through Leominster, Hereford into Monmouth. From there we pick up the A466 and follow the River Wye along to the River Severn where we make our ninth stop in Beachley, Chepstow. Maximum elevation 225 meters soon after leaving Telford.


Day 10 - Chepstow to TivertonChepstow to Tiverton (87 miles)
An interesting start to the day by crossing the Severn via the cycle path along side the M48. Passing Filton Airfield, birthplace of Concorde (sad spotter!) and crossing the Avon via Isambard Kingdom Brunel's Clifton Suspension Bridge. The A38 takes us out of Bristol and into the heart of the west country, Bridgewaeter, Taunton and Wellington. Hilly "B" roads lead us to Bickleigh, just south of Tiverton. Maximum elevation 190 meters through Potters Hill, south west of Bristol.


Day 11 - Tiverton to PlymouthTiverton to Bugle (73 miles)
More "B" roads take us toward the Dartmoor Forest and the busy A30 through Bodmin Moor. A small diversion from the A30 brings us into the village of Bugle, just south of Bodmin. Maximum elevation290 meters passing through Bodmin Moor.


Day 12 - Plymouth to CambourneBugle to Penzance (43 miles)
The last real day of cycling keeps us on the busy A30 for the majority of the day, passing through Red Ruth, Cambourne and Hayle. We should reach Penzance by about lunchtime or about pub opening time! Ideal to meet up with the 25 family and friends who have made the special journey to meet us and enjoy a long weekend. Maximum elevation180 meters, first thing, soon after joining the A30


Cambourne to Lands EndPenzance to Lands End (10 miles)
No matter how severe the hangover, an early start to complete the journey, once again on the A30. A couple of hills but the promise of more beer and bubbly at the end should soon see us over them! With a little organisation a couple of bike racks should meet us at our final destination so we will never have to set foot on a bike ever again! Maximum elevation - who cares?


Well that’s it!

By this time I hope that we will have raised sack loads of money for Cancer Research UK and will have seen parts of the country that I’m sure we would not if we completed it by other means, and I dare say the ride will have done our immediate health no damage!! Long term we are knackered!!!!

 
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