Rough Ride Reborn

From one half of the team behind the original Rough Ride cross-country MTB event comes a new event – the Rough Ride Reborn. This time, it’s back as a gravel ride on a new route suited to both gravel bikes and cross country MTBs. Starts and finishes in Kington, Herefordshire, and is as gravelly as it gets. We are really looking forward to showing this one off, as the route is one of the best and most varied we have ridden in the UK.

Social Distancing

As none of the Cross Cartel rides are mass start or group rides they lend themselves well to social distancing – there is no ‘mass gathering’ element at all, as they are fully self supported.  Feel free to start your ride when it suits you. Riders will of course spread out very widely as they get into the ride, but during the Covid-19 pandemic please be careful to observe government rules and guidance on social distancing.

In particular, please do not form groups with people you have not traveled with, and maintain a 2m distance at all times from anyone you are not in a ‘bubble’ with.  This will mainly be of concern at the start – so please just make sure to leave big gaps between yourself and other riders as you set out.

If you wish to appear in the list of riders that complete the route on the day you will simply need to record your ride on a GPS or smart phone, and upload it to Strava by 9am the following day – the route starts at the gate onto Hergest Ridge along the Offa’s Dyke path in Kington (here), so just remember to press start as you close it.  There is NO official start time!  Parking is available around the town, and there is some limited parking just before the gate.

Sunday 16th August 2020

  • Distance:  69Km
  • Off Road/Paved Split: 72%/28%
  • Total Climbing: 1480m
  • Max Gradient (up): 28% (on tarmac section)
  • Max Gradient (down): 30+% (off road for 50m – care needed – walk if not sure)
  • Suitable for:  Gravel Bike or Cross Country MTB
  • Registration: Open (see below)
  • Route File (GPX):   CLICK TO DOWNLOAD

How to Register

Registering is a pretty simple process:

  1. Set up a free Strava account (if you don’t have one already)
  2. Join the Cross Cartel group (called a club in Strava)
  3. Scroll down to the Rough Ride event, and click on “I’m In” (you won’t be able to see the event in Strava until you join the Cross Cartel group)

Right on the Welsh Border the route is 90% in Wales, and features just a couple of extremely short linking stretches on roads with any level of traffic.  The route is over 70% off road, with a full mix of grassy downland, gravel/forest roads, some brief rocky sections (including one very steep descent of around 50m, which is ride-able for experienced riders, but if unsure please just walk down!), singletrack and farm tracks (which can get quite muddy and rutted following wet weather).  The vast majority of paved/tarmac sections are extremely quiet back lanes. We have only test ridden the Rough Ride on gravel bikes, and while they are probably the ideal bike overall for most riders there are a few stretches where a cross country MTB would have been optimal.

Please note that the route passes through no villages that have a shop or other source of food/water.  It passes through mostly pretty empty countryside, but does cross a few roads and through a handful of villages.  There are a fair few gates on the route, so please take care to close them after you, as there are a lot of sheep!

Important

You will need to be fully self sufficient – these are self-supported rides on routes that are open to the general public, with no emergency back up or mechanical support of any kind. You need to take spares and supplies with you. There will be no rescue vehicle to collect you if you have a mechanical, so please make sure you take a mobile phone for any emergencies. You will need to call a friend to collect you or the emergency services in the event of a medical incident. And it is sensible to be insured – you don’t need race insurance, as our rides aren’t races, but general cycle/personal liability insurance is highly recommended.

The Cross Cartel has no responsibility for any incidents that occur during or as a result of your ride – you are solely responsible for your own actions and safety while riding our routes, whatever day you choose to ride them. The Cross Cartel is not an “event organiser” – we are route mappers – we do not provide ride support or event venues. Our routes are on public trails, tracks and paved roads. You are free, as we are, to ride them anytime you like, but we only publish the rides completed on a given day

Please follow the Highway Code at all times when on the roads, and the Countryside Code when off road – and PLEASE close all gates and take litter home with you.

About Cross Cartel Rides

Cross Cartel rides neither races nor traditional organised leisure rides. They are are similar to what were traditionally called “reliability trials”, where the objective or challenge is to complete a pre-determined route on a particular date within a time limit – but in our case the limit is all day and we have no set start time. The challenge is simply to ride a mapped route on a given day, at a time of your choosing. We will publish completion names and times for your interest, but there is no podium and no prizes. Go as fast or as slow as you feel comfortable with!