Routes Revealed for Cumbrian Challenge 2021
Will your team do the Peak, Tough or Tougher?
The Cumbrian Challenge 2021 has been a long time coming, with the original plans for May 2020 disrupted by the pandemic. But thanks to the incredible effort of NHS staff, military support and other key workers in rolling out the vaccine, we are looking forward to returning to the Lake District in September.
Nearly 1,000 teams have come together to meet, walk with and support veterans at our annual, flagship challenge event in Grasmere - and 200 more will take part in our eighth challenge!
Teams consist of three or four people, with everyone starting and finishing at our event marquee in the picturesque village of Grasmere. If you haven’t decided who to bring yet, don’t worry: teammates can be added and swapped until 27th August 2021.
All three routes in 2021 will tackle the magnificent Fairfield Peaks – guaranteeing stunning views no matter which route you choose (subject to the infamous Lakeland weather of course adding spice to the adventure).
"From the south it appears as a great horseshoe of grassy slopes below a consistently high skyline...but lacking those dramatic qualities that appeal most to the lover of hills. But on the north side the Fairfield range is magnificent: here are dark precipices, long fans of scree...desolate combes and deep valleys” Alfred Wainright, A Pictorial Guide to the Lakeland Fells
Take a look at the routes for this year which will challenge the amazing teams of fundraisers alongside our beneficiaries
THE 'TOUGHER' (13 peaks)
For a memorable day in the hills, choose the ‘Tougher’ Route which is 32km long and includes a total ascent of 2,000m. The route reaches the peaks of Heron Pike, Great Rigg, Fairfield Peak and St Sunday Crag before descending towards Patterdale. And for a final sting in the tail, the route climbs up over Little Hart Crag, Dove Crag and Hart Crag for beautiful views of the finish before descending back down towards Grasmere. This will be a long day, but it will be an incredible achievement for all those who take it on - and it will be put in perspective by the stories of the veterans who will be taking part alongside you and you are fundraising for.
"An amazing, awe inspiring weekend of camaraderie, service and perseverance. For many our service to one another never ended and this was our opportunity to directly support those in the greatest need. The entire weekend is superbly organised and for us at Amazon it is a touchstone back to the men and women who are struggling after leaving the forces and a reminder of why the Amazon Military Veterans group exists." Gillian Russell, Military Program Manager, Amazon
THE 'TOUGH' (9 peaks)
This year’s ‘Tough’ route has a distance of 25km and an ascent of 1,700m. Starting with a beautiful climb out of Grasmere to Heron Pike, the route continues along Rydal Fell to Fairfield Peak where (subject to the clag) spectacular views await. The route back to base, descends towards Bridgend, takes in the stunning Brothers Water and climbs up and over Hart Crag before finally crossing the finish line, where you can receive your medals, enjoy some grub and experience a fantastic sense of achievement with your team, whatever the weather.
"The camaraderie whilst doing it makes you forget any fears or aches as it's such an amazing day. You get to chat to the people you are supporting and our servicemen deserve a pay-it-forward by ourselves to show our support.” Tracy Todd, All Together Cumbria
THE 'PEAK' (1 peak)
The ‘Peak’ Route is the perfect route for those who are new to the fells. The route has an overall height gain of just 700m and a total distance of 10km, with all day to complete it. Teams will climb up to Great Rigg (and the great views that come with it) via Alcock Tarn and Heron Pike. From here, you will begin the descent towards the finish line. It’s a brilliant, and achievable, introduction to the Lake District.
“Being in serious terrain for 8-9 hours allows for some serious team-building. Supporting (and being supported), working together through navigation, injury, terrain and the elements brings out the very best in everyone - and we’ve always finished together. The organisation of the event is second to none and the ability to meet and talk to the ex-forces members that WWTW supports is both uplifting and humbling.” Andrew Woodcock, Arqiva
All three routes will end back in Grasmere where teams will have the opportunity to meet and hear from beneficiaries of the charity – an important reminder of how your fundraising really helps to make a difference (check out our impact report for 2020 to find out more about the importance of your fundraising).
If you would like to take on one of these fantastic routes, read testimonials, see videos about the event or check out the current fundraising leaderboard, please visit: https://www.cumbrianchallenge.org/.
See our 2019 highlights here.
Thanks to our presenting partners (All Together Cumbria, Amazon, BAE Systems and FDM) and our supporting partners (AEGIS, Morson and Gasway) for sticking with us through this challenging time.
Image Credit: Martin Lynn – Carve Photography