A classic Exmoor loop. With more than 4000 feet of climbing over challenging moorland terrain, this route will be a test for any cyclist. As a taste of what awaits the event starts with a five mile climb; the nursery slopes of Watersmeet Road will warm the legs before the road veers skyward towards the moor at Scobhill. The crossing Brendon Common is a delight taking riders to the small village of Simonsbath. Following the climb of Mill Hill out of Exford the route drops off the moor down through the magical valley of Pool Wood before emerging at Porlock. On a course so good highlights are hard to pick, but arguably the best known is the climb of Porlock Toll Road, a superb four mile detour that leads to a rollercoaster of a road across the northern coast of the moor, and ultimately a thrilling finale - the two mile descent of Countisbury Hill.

'This is too good not to want more'

ASHLEY GRUBER, CYCLING PHOTOGRAPHER.

At the heart of the event is The XXMOOR, an epic 60 mile route that encompasses all that is great about cycling on Exmoor. Diverting from the 40 mile route at Simonsbath, riders cross the River Barle and climb the wonderful Kingford Hill. This is a ride that dares to veer far from the beaten track - from ridiculously steep, ‘secret’ climbs that emerge from deep, hidden valleys to sublime stretches of open moorland tarmac. One stretch, The Ridge Road, which ripples across Exmoor’s southern ridge, provides sensational views of Exmoor to the north, and Dartmoor to the South. Cutting back through remote, challenging lanes the route reaches Withypool. More Climbing required, up and onto the common before re-crossing the Barle at Lanacre. The road back to rejoin the 40 mile route at Exford is tough for sure, but the experience is character building.

For those who want more, and you can’t have enough of a good thing, right? There’s the 100 mile XXXMOOR. Having completed the 60 mile route, an awesome killer loop silently awaits. Tired legs will first have to ascend the 1 in 4 gradient of Lynmouth Hill, before being swept into a magical world where lanes literally cling to cliff faces. Follow the road through the world famous Valley of Rocks, and over the stunning coastline that follows, peaking with the two mile ascent of Jose’s Lane. Some steep descending take riders back down to sea level in Combe Martin from where the long trek back up to the moor begins. After four more testing climbs riders are rewarded with a reverse crossing Brendon Common, and a wonderful five-mile alpine descent back into Lynmouth. Chapeau!

'BRUTAL. BEAUTIFUL. UNBELIEVABLE.'

JERED GRUBER, EX-PROFESSIONAL CYCLIST AND PHOTOJOURNALIST

1OO MILES  12ooo FEET
SUNDAY JULY 16 2O17

 

6o MILES  7oOo FEET
SUNDAY JULY 16 2O17 

 

4o MILES  45oo FEET
SUNDAY JULY 16 2O17 

 

'On the far south of Exmoor, Ridge Road does exactly what it says - it ripples across the southern edge, providing glimpses to the north of the rest of the moors, even a little view of Wales. To the south, there's Dartmoor. and with a ladder, I swear I'd be able to see France. It feels like you can see around the curvature of the earth. I'd never been so low and felt so high at the same time.'
Jered Gruber. Peloton Magazine.

VIEW FROM THE SADDLE
'Exmoor is just that - seemingly of another world. It's brutal, beautiful, unbelieveable. It takes all the superlatives I've ever given for unrelenting perfection and terrain and turns them on their head.'
Jered Gruber. Peloton Magazine.

'I had come to Exmoor to find a special place. I said it before we left - if it's half as beautiful as it looks I'll have a new favourite spot. It was twice as beautiful, twice as difficult, and every bit as perfect as I imagined.'
Jered Gruber. Peloton Magazine.

VIEW ON STRAVA

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© Photography copyright Jered & Ashley Gruber 2017