Cyclone Festival of Cycling, an event for riders of all abilities and ages

Cyclone Festival of Cycling

12 Treherne Road, High West Jesmond, Newcastle-Upon-Tyne NE2 3NP

+44 (0)7710 635514

Cyclone Gravel Rides

The Cyclone Gravel Rides

Date: Sunday 4 August 2024

Event HQ Location
: Hamsterley Forest, Hamsterley, Bishop Auckland DL13 3QQ (Windy Bank road entrance).
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On-Site Parking
– Visitor parking fees apply - Details

Entries: Enter Here
(Entry closes 11.59pm Sunday 28 July)

The Cyclone Gravel rides follow the spirit of all our Cyclone events, with the emphasis being on providing cycling opportunities for all abilities, with a shorter "family" ride, suitable for all ages and abilities (over-10), plus two longer options. All the rides are on a stunning 5 mile loop through a beautiful forest, including moorland and riverside sections.

Thanks to Forestry England, we have been given access to a beautiful five mile gravel loop in the upper reaches of Hamsterley Forest, in County Durham. The loop takes in some spectacular upland scenery, with distant moorland views, heather covered hillsides, woodland rides and river-side tracks. All are wide and relatively non-technical, though off-road tyres are needed and there is some steep climbing in a couple of short sections.

Whilst many Gravel events commit riders to long distances, our Gravel event is run on a multi-lap format, meaning that you’re never more than 2.5 miles from the event HQ. Taking a leaf out of Cyclo-Cross events, there will be a pit area, where you can get technical support, pick up food and drink, or simply take time out.

There are three Ride options:

  • One Hour Ride (families, younger riders, less experienced riders): Start 10am - £15 entry fee. Minimum age of rider (on day of the event) 10 years old. An ideal starter events for adults and children/families. All under-14 riders must be accompanied by an adult who has also entered the event. Complete as many laps as you like – your ride will finish the first time you cross the finishing line after 11am.
  • Two Hour Ride (older children, adults): Start 1pm - £25 entry fee. Minimum age of rider (on day of the event) 14 years old. An ideal event for adults and young riders alike. Complete as many laps as you like – your ride will finish the first time you cross the finishing line after 3pm.
  • Three Hour Ride (more experienced riders): Start 12 noon - £25 entry fee. Minimum age of rider (on day of the event) 18 years old. A slightly more testing event for adult riders. Complete as many laps as you like – your ride will finish the first time you cross the finishing line after 3pm.
  • Route Map - view the loop we will be using for this event

Ride Format

Riders simply complete as many or as few laps as they want inside the time limit of their ride. Your ride will finish the first time you cross the finishing line after the completion of the duration of your ride (1, 2 or 3 hours). Although not a race, all riders will be electronically timed and all times and numbers of laps completed will be published after the event.

What Bike Should I Use?

The 5 mile loop is largely surfaced in fine gravel. It’s generally well drained, though there are a few short sections that can get slightly muddy in wet weather. There are a couple of short steep climbs. Gravel, Cyclo-Cross and Mountain Bikes are all suitable for the rides. Road bikes and road tyres are not suitable. 

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