The Bowland Populaire part of our Challenge Ride Series

Riders in Wray at the start of Lancaster and South Lakes CTC’s 100km Bowland Populaire

The Bowland Populaire part of our Challenge Ride Series

Riders in Wray at the start of the Bowland Populaire
Riders in Wray at the start of Lancaster and South Lakes CTC’s 100km Bowland Populaire
Cycling UK's Challenge Ride Series 2017 takes you to some of the loveliest parts of the country for a grand day out on the bike. Lancaster and South Lakes CTC's Bowland Populaire on Sunday 23 April proved to be exactly that, with 45 riders completing the 100km route, which included over 1,600m of climbing. Lancaster Secretary Mike Hutchinson describes the day.

In conjunction with the Wray Scarecrow Festival, Lancaster and South Lakes CTC organised a challenge ride covering over 100km of the Forest of Bowland.

The start and finish was at the Village Institute in Wray. By 9am, there had been 48 registered to ride the event. The weather was kind and Sunday proved to be one of the finest spring days so far in 2017.

With 3 non-starters, 45 riders eventually took part, with riders from Peak Audax and Manchester, Eden Valley Cumbria, Settle Wheelers, Kendall & District Cycling Scene, Harrogate, Preston, Leyland and St Anne's as well as local Lancaster CTC regulars. As this was a tourist trial and not a race, riders aged 12 to over 70 took part alongside one another. 

This was a hilly event based in the main on minor roads and with a total of over 1,600 metres of climbing. The outward journey went through Claughton, Caton Green and Quernmore Cross Roads before Five Lane Ends and the first check, at 22km, an information point, just before The Fleece.

The first major climbs were over Harrisend Fell and the road from Oakenclough en route to Bleasdale and Chipping.

At 50km, there was a marshalled checkpoint outside the handily-positioned Cobbled Corner Café. Several riders took advantage of the opportunity here for food and drink.

By now the field was split over several minutes and they left in small groups heading towards the Inn at Whitewell, Dunsop Bridge and Slaidburn. From here there was a serious climb up towards Tosside and Wigglesworth where they turned to Rathmell and the final marshalled check at 80km just before the A65.

The return leg took the riders through Eldroth, Mewith Head and along Mewith Lane en route to the finish.

All 45 riders completed the course between 1.30pm and 5.15pm.

At the Village Institute the catering there was most welcomed. All successful competitors also received Cycling UK goodie bags and a handsome Challenge Ride Series medal.

Lancaster and South Lakes CTC plan to run the event again in Spring 2018. 

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