Last Monday, 24th May, a squad of 30 cyclists travelled to the Lake District from across the UK to partake in Jnetics’ inaugural challenge event , a 180 mile cycle across 4 days. Soon after arrival at their stunning base in Great Langdale, the riders set off on a 30 mile route from their base in Great Langdale to Blea Tarn, where they enjoyed stunning views of the Langdale Pikes.
Day 2 – with 45 undulating miles to cover an early start saw our riders on the road to Ambleside and on towards Kirkstone – the highest of the Lakeland passes at 1500 ft . The climb out of Ambleside is on a minor road called ‘The Struggle’. Now we know why! We then saw Ullswater for the first time at Glenridding – the start point for climbing Helvellyn, one of the most popular of the Lake District climbs. We followed the shore of Ullswater for 3 miles before reaching Threlkeld, a delightful village where the riders enjoyed a picnic lunch, sheltered from the rain inside the Village cricket club. Soon we were back on the road to our next lake, Thirlmere, and a fast downhill towards Grasmere. Day 2 finished with a final ascent over the pass with views of Elterwater.
Day 3 – This was the Challenge Day! 65 miles and 3 epic climbs! At least the weather started to pick up and we saw the sun for the first time! The first climb was up the infamous Wrynose Pass which has short sections of 25-30% grades. Soon afterwards came Hardknott Pass, shorter and sharper, also with 25-30% grades. The subsequent downhill into Eskdale was a dream! As was the stunning route to Ennerdale Bridge with expansive views of the Lakes, where we enjoyed lunch. Soon we were at Buttermere and Loweswater, with spectacular views of the lakes and mountains beyond.
One of the cyclists, David Blank told us “The final climb of the day took us up Honister Pass to the slate mine at 1200ft and on to our finish point at Portinscale. The ride not only today but every day totally surpassed my expectations. At times the challenges were huge, but nothing in comparison to the challenges facing the parents of babies born with genetic disorders” David added “ I am truly privileged to be able to support such an amazing charity “ What a day!
Day 4 – Still 35 undulating miles to cover before we headed for home and we were soon past Loughrigg Tarn before descending and returning to the main road towards Ambleside, then Hawkshead for a second time and High Wray with commanding views over Lake Windermere. Our riders continued past Esthwaite Water and cycled along the eastern side of Coniston for 5 miles, passing Brantwood, a stately home and former residence of John Ruskin, writer and painter, before the final stretch back to Great Langdale. Just time for a quick change and a final lunch to celebrate the inaugural Jnetics cycle challenge before leaving the Lakes.
Nicole Gordon, Jnetics CEO added “I am so proud of the cyclists and the team who made the inaugural Jneticycle possible. It was a truly fantastic 4 days. To date we have raised over £50,000 which will make a huge difference to the number of young adults we can screen this year. Every penny we raise takes us one step further to achieving our mission of ensuring that no young Jewish couple should have to endure the heartache of bringing a child into the world with one of the genetic disorders that Jnetics screen for”.
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