Horseshoe Grimpeur

A non-competitive cycling challenge over 109km and climbing 2600 metres.

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A hilly ride to test your climbing legs. Serving up such treats as Pentre-llyn-cymmer, Bwlch Penbarras, Minera (Esclusham) Mountain and, of course, the Horseshoe Pass, both old and new, with a summit finish at the Ponderosa. The ride is quite demanding, climbing a total of 2600 metres, with climbs spaced throughout the length of the route. But you will be rewarded with great views over the surrounding countryside. Many of the ascents are steep; some averaging 15% and over. The maximum gradient is around 25%, although it's said that the Bwlch Penbarras hairpin is 30% if you take it tight. Low gearing is therefore advised (I will be using a triple).

This is a non-competitive cycling event on public roads. It is not a race or trial of speed. The objective is to complete the course within the time limit of 7 hours 30 minutes (equivalent to an average speed of 14kmh-1 or 9mph). Time is recorded from when you start until you finish. Times will be published on this website.

This is a basic event with no route marking and no support on the route. It is a cross-over between cyclosport and audax. To keep costs down, the route is not signed or marshalled. But:

  • there is no maximum speed
  • ride times will be published
  • food and water is provided at checkpoints
  • you will recieve a detailed printed routesheet
  • a .GPX route track is available to download
  • a recovery service will be in operation
  • mudguards, lights, tweeds are not required
It has been devised for experienced, self-sufficient cyclists who relish a challenge. The nearest equivalent would be the Wild Wales (but if you want a lump of slate you'll have to pick one up from the side of the Horseshoe Pass on the way down.)