Glorious Gravel

Kielder Borders Gravel Epic

10th September 2023 | Kielder

Long Route

100km | 2050m

Medium Route

59km | 1350m

Ride Overview

The biggest gravel weekend of the year at the home of gravel riding in England. Take on the Kielder Forest Epic on the Saturday and the Kielder Borders Epic on Sunday on the smooth and wild fire roads of the far north of the country. Ride one day or make a weekend of it and stay in Kielder Forest for one or two nights taking in the stars with it’s dark sky zone & observatory. Check out Saturday’s Kielder Forest Epic HERE.

 

The Kielder Border Epic takes in stunning & remote gravel across both sides of the border. Choose between the long 100km option including a loop back in Kielder Forest or the medium 59km route in both Kielder & Newcastleton Forest. Camping for the weekend is available from £15 per night or hotels near Kielder & 50 minutes away in Hexham.

Highlights

  • Ride in two countries with some epic gravel & views in both England & Scotland.
  • Remote riding into the rolling hills of the Scottish Borders.
  • Make a weekend of it by adding the Kielder Forest Epic on Saturday with camping and hotels available nearby & see the stars in this dark sky zone.

Included in Entry

Fully Signed Route

Our team work tirelessly to create the best gravel routes in the UK. All courses are fully signed so you can just enjoy the ride.

Checkpoints with Proper Food

An epic ride deserves proper support. We have tea, coffee and cake at the first feed and sandwiches & crisps at the main feed. Checkpoints are approx every 30 - 35km

Accurate GPX Files

A few days before the ride, we will send GPX files for all of the route options so you can follow the course on your GPS as well as the signs.

Mechanics Available

At the rider village & at selected feed stops we have mechanics available to help with any bike issues. We also have spare inner tubes, CO2 & more .

Rider Support Vans

We are here to make sure you have a great day on the gravel. If you have any major mechanicals or need collecting, support vehicles are a phone call away.

Beer at Finish Line

You will be greeted at the finish line with a beer & food available from our food truck. Perfect to chat about your day with fellow riders.

Event Program

7th September: GPX files and pre ride briefing video sent by email to each rider.

 

10th September – 7.45am: Ride village in Kielder opens next to the campsite. Collecting your ride number takes approx 10 mins.

 

10th September – 8am to 9.30am: Ride start. We will give you a short ride briefing and set you off in small groups.

 

10th September – 6pm: Ride village closes

 

10th September – 7pm: Link to ride times & rider photos sent to each participant by email.

Long Route

Heading out from Kielder, we head off road straight away for a tough first 13km which is all up and down. The first 30km of today’s route is slightly rougher than the smooth gravel we are on for most of the weekend – expect some singletrack and bumpier gravel as we ride through stunning & remote hills away from the loggers.

The first feed is in Newcastleton at 29km – by the time you are getting coffee & cake you will have done the hardest part of the ride.

From here we head back into England and along the border for a while on rolling terrain with very little flat. The gravel here is smoother as we get back to feed stop 2 at 59km.

The last 40km is (relatively) flat and quick on smooth gravel as we head into Kielder Forest and finish along Kielder Water before a well earned beer at the finish line.

Percentage of Route Off Road: 85%

Distance:

100km

Elevation:

2050m

Difficulty:

4.5/5

Medium Route

The medium route does the first loop only of the long route going into Scotland on slightly rougher surfaces with some longer climbs before a feed in Newcastleton & some rolling terrain along the border home.

A good option if you want a variety of gravel riding in the remote and stunning hills along the border.

Percentage of Route Off Road: 90%

Distance:

59km

Elevation:

1350m

Difficulty:

3.5/5

Short Route

The short route follows the medium for the majority of the day but cuts off a section in the middle and near the end to make this nearly 20km shorter. With some nice variety on the off road sections & very little climbing, this is ideal for riders of all abilities.

Percentage of Route Off Road: 55%

Distance:

47km

Elevation:

350m

Difficulty:

1/5

Bike Selection & Packing List

Bike Choice: The route is nearly all off road on smooth gravel (think Strade Bianche in Tuscany). Where the loggers have been working the gravel can be heavier. A gravel bike or hard tail MTB would be perfect. Road bikes are not suitable. E-bikes are allowed on all of our rides.

 

Tyre Choice: We will send an update on conditions closer to the ride. A 36 – 40mm allrounder gravel tyre should be ideal for this route.

 

Packing List: Bring equipment to be self sufficient on the route (inner tubes, sealant, multi-tool, pump or CO2 etc) as you will be without mobile signal for most of the day. 

 

Clothing: Likely to be mixed weather in early September, bring layers, arm / knee warmers and a lightweight waterproof jacket etc. Helmets are mandatory, you will not be able to ride without one.

FAQs

The ride starts and finishes in Kielder. There is free parking onsite as well as toilets & refreshments. We will send the ride village address by email. 

Yes, e-bikes are allowed on all Glorious Gravel ride. These must comply with UK law.

We have first aiders & mechanics at the feed stops. There will be a phone number on the back of your ride number – call this if you need collecting.

Yes, we start between 8am and 9.30am and set people off in small groups so the off road sections are not too busy. Please come to the start line with anyone you want to ride with, we will give a short ride briefing and set you off.