GigRower 20 Club Bike Challenge :: Oct/Nov/Dec09?

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The GigRower 20 Club Bike Challenge is an event we are thinking about running this winter (Oct/Nov/Dec) and are posting it as an idea now to gauge interest only before we go any further.

With many Gig Rowers keen riders as well we thought it might be a bit of fun to organise a Gig Rower bike ride in the winter, a chance to get out the gym and away from the gigs for some alternative training, a bit of fun and a good social.

Pic: Rowers from Falmoth GC & Flushing & Mylor GC compete in the My-Tri
GigRower Bike 19 club challenge

It’s called a challenge for good reason, the full 140 mile, 2 day, route over is by no means an easy ride and should only be attempted by experienced riders, but don’t worry for those less experienced we have some ‘fun options’ to help you get involved. The route has been planned to take in as many clubs as possible, avoid main roads and take in the Cornish coast as riders head west.  Do not expect a flat ride as the route takes in a good number of good old Cornish hills diving in and out of creeks, harbours and inlets.

It is NOT a race …



Day 1

Day one will take the riders along the southern shores of Cornwall,  through Cornish fishing villages and across the River Fal to the Lizard Peninsula, taking in 14 Gig Clubs on the way.  In the evening riders can stay in a range of accommodation on the most Southerly point of England and come together for a mass pasta supper at the Lizard Youth Hostel (We are planning to book the whole thing) next to the lighthouse.

Riders not up to the full 85 miles have two shorter options that will bring them into Lizard around the same time as the other riders.

Fowey – Par 3.76m
Par – Charlestown 3.86m
Charlestown – Meva 3.95m
Meva – Gorran 2.88m
Gorran – Roseland 17.27
Roseland – Truro (KHF) 5.54m
Truro – Devoran 3.82m
Devoran – Mylor 4.17m
Mylor – Penryn 1.82m
Penryn – Falmouth 2.18m
Falmouth – Helford 8.36m
Helford – Coverack 15.02m
Coverack – Cadgwith 8.45m
Cadgwith – Lizard 4.37m

Total Long (Complete Route): 85.43m
Total Medium (Crossing St Mawes – Falmouth on ferry): 69.81m
Total Short (Starting Falmouth): 36.2m

Day 2

A shorter second day gives riders the chance to finish by mid afternoon and then make their way back up the A30 and home. The route takes riders across to the North Cornish Coast and then around one of the top 10 cycling routes in England past St Ives, Zennor, St Just & Lands End finishing back in Mounts Bay.

Riders not up to a big ride with tired legs from day one can head straight for Mounts Bay on an easy 23 mile run.

Short Route
Lizard – Porthleven 15.27m
Porthleven – Mounts Bay 8.47m

Total: 23.74m

Long Route
Porthleven – Hayle 10.72m
Hayle – St Ives 5.37m
St Ives – Zennor 5.46 m
Zennor – Pendeen – Sennen 13.69m
Sennen – Mounts Bay 20.07m

Total: 55.31m



Long Ride
0600 – 0700 :: Registration at Lizard Youth Hostel
0700 :: Coach with riders, trailer with bikes and support vehicles depart MB
0800 :: Arrive Fowey
0830 :: Depart Fowey
1430  – 1930 :: Bikes arrive Lizard
2000 :: GigRower pasta dinner at Youth Hostel Lizard

Medium Ride
As ‘Long Ride’ expect take the ferry from St Mawes to Falmouth cutting out fifteen miles.

Short Ride
0900 – 1000 :: Drop off your bikes at Falmouth Gig Club
1000 – 1100 :: Registration at Mounts Bay Gig Club
1100 :: Bus departs
1200 :: Arrive Falmouth Gig Club
1230 :: Depart Falmouth Gig Club
1430 – 1630 :: Bikes arrive Lizard


1000 :: Riders depart Lizard
1200 ish :: Short riders arrive Mounts Bay
1500 ish :: Long riders arrive Mounts Bay


We are looking to book the whole of the Lizard Youth Hostel where the big Pasta Supper will be prepared for riders. Other places to stay are also available, see below for details.

Lizard Youth Hostel (Base Camp): £35 pp (This includes TWO NIGHTS, Friday & Saturday, Lizard is only a 20 min drive from Mounts Bay so any riders staying on Saturday are also welcome to stay on Friday night at no extra cost. If you are just staying 1 night I am afraid the price is the same as it is min 2 night booking )
lizard yoth hostel

Housel Bay Hotel: Rooms from £40pp/pn
Housel Bay Hotel

A list of other B&Bs and accommodation on the Lizard:

Obviously riders living close by may choose to drive home at night and if so you can leave your car at the Hostel early on Saturday and get a lift to the start with your bike so that you end up at your car at the end of the day.  Your are still invited to the Pasta Supper but spaces will be limited.


7/11/09 (SR:0730 SS:1630)
28/11/09 (SR: 0740 SS: 1600)
5/12/09 (SR: 0750 SS: 1530)


Will be at the Lizard.


£35 ish (TBC) (Same for all routes)

2 Days parking at Mounts Bay
Coach & bike transport from Mounts Bay to start
Support vehicle
Route maps
Event T-Shirt
Numbered rider bib


Suggested lunch stops will be listed on the map.


We are inviting all Gig Clubs en-route to make tea, coffee cake and snacks available to the riders and to give them them a cheer and some support.


At this stage this is only an idea and we have not contacted all the necessary parties.  What we are asking for is a register of interest before we go further, if you are serious about entering then please fill out the ‘Leave a reply’ form below (If you can’t see the form click here) and list:

Your name
Biking experience
Preferred route
Accom preference

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29 Comments on "GigRower 20 Club Bike Challenge :: Oct/Nov/Dec09?"

  1. Nicky

    Nicky & Phil Davey
    Not masses of experience on road other than work commute, plenty of off road / moorland riding exp tho.
    Long route??? (Might regret saying that)
    Youth Hostel both nights

  2. Jeremy Stonehouse, Flushing & Mylor
    2+ years on variety of bikes
    Long route, Fri & Sat in Hostel
    “Not a race…”, yeah my a*se. Toby you’ll have to take off your panniers AND basket for this and tell Lena to carry her own coat.

  3. Blako

    Andy Blake (probably Paddy too), Flushing & Mylor
    10+ years, endurance, race, timetrials etc
    Long route. Fri+Sat hostel
    Yes, won’t race unless Nigel Churcher turns up then 3 cranks in and we’re off.

  4. Natasha Evans, Ben sayell

    not got a lot of experience but would love to do it, been out and about on and off road etc.
    Ben got a lot of experince off road
    long route (only because i better say that)
    youth hostel fine by me.

  5. Lena Oldrieve

    Will do the long route (as long as I can draft behind Paddy Blake) and will bring old man Oldrieve and Rusty. Both nights in youth hostel as long as I don’t have to sleep with Toby. Looking forward to porridge club.

  6. Hannah Cary

    Awesome, would love to do it! Long route sounds good……nice challenge mid-winter. Know some others that may be up for it too!

  7. Hayley Eslick, Brian Hall

    Roseland & Falmouth respectively.

    1 to 2 years on hybrid/road bike.
    Normal ride 20-50 miles.
    Long route def for Brian, whilst I contemplate which route for myself…
    Youth hostel sounds good!

  8. Yoss

    Great idea, got to worth a bash and plenty of time to get in some practice. If Paddy’s going remember to bring some ear plugs in order to get some kind of sleep…

  9. Ali Johns

    Sounds like a great idea – count me in! Probably for the middle distance on Saturday and long one on Sunday and would like to stay in YH Sat night x

  10. Ruth Nicholls

    Recently retired gig rower from Isles of Scilly…
    Yes very interested so long as it doesn’t clash with attempt at taming the ‘Exmoor Beast’ sportive on Nov 1st.
    Yes to youth hostels.

  11. Nigel Churcher

    Looks like I’ m in for the long one(not that good on a bike though Blako!!!)
    Will be at least two of us possibly more depending on the dates

  12. mike willis

    padstow rowing club, i am a confident club / regional cyclist i am not quite sure about accomidation just yet we have not deside , but you can deffinately put me down for the ride.

  13. Andrew Nancarrow

    Devoran, cycle regularly 20 miles plus on road and mountain bike, sometimes towing one of the little people.
    Long route
    Sat accom only.

  14. Olli

    Yep me and tom def keen, bit worried tom wont make it hes only done 3000 miles this month …. so when you say esther is cooking, is that compulsory or can i bring my own pot noodle?

  15. Matt & Steph

    Club – Cattewater
    Biking experience – took the stabilisers off last week! Sometimes have difficulty staying upright. Both have some road and offroad experience.
    Preferred route – hmm, tricky one… thinking medium – not fancying finishing in the dark.
    Accom preference – Youth hostel both nights.

    Chances of this going ahead?

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