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  • C2C
  • Work has volunteered me to organize a charity C2C. I am planning on the Whitehaven – Tynemouth 140 mile route to be done sometime in the spring over 2 days. There will be 4 cyclists and 2 reasonably fit non-cyclists.
    We have a volunteer van driver who will drop us off at the start and meet us at various points throughout the 2 days.
    Planning on doing a 50/50 split for the mileage over the 2 days with a B& B stop mid way. Most of us will be opting to do it on road bikes although a couple are using hardtail mountainbikes.
    There are several websites and route variations but I have based everything on the following: http://www.c2c-guide.co.uk/
    Has anyone any opinions on the best route, or do they have a gpx of the best route – the ideal would be tarmac and virtually traffic free. Also, any good B& Bs at the half way point. Is bike choice vital or will mtb or road bike be fine? Has anyone actually done the c2c route on the link?
    Any advice kit wise etc would be appreciated.

    Premier Icon ir_bandito

    Best route is probably to follow the sustrans signs, you’ll struggle to get lost. That distance, over 2 days on road, you’ll be fine on a mtb, although you’ll want sensible tyres.

    If your colleagues need inspiration, have a look at this:


    Half way?


    Slick tyres on the hard tails at Max pressure.
    Set off early ,finish early.


    Premier Icon ir_bandito

    Also in Alston is Alston House
    Cafe and restaurant/bar are really nice. Never stayed there as I only live 20 miles away.

    Thanks guys – that blog is excellent. Hopefully now seeing an 8 year old complete the ride will encourage a few more to join us!


    A bunch of us from our village are doing it on the summer solstice, in one day.
    We will start at sunrise so will have about 18hrs of daylight.
    Those that are not fit enough are manning the vans or are on field kitchen duty.
    We are finishing at the Newcastle end in order to go ‘out out’.
    Can’t wait.


    I did this in 2 days by following sustrans Hadrians Cycleway it is slightly longer than your plan though, it was very well marked, so good in fact that we hardly looked at the map at all. We chose this route as it is basically flat for the first 60-70 miles, then gets a bit bumpy for 30 or so miles and then go’s flat again to the finish. As we had a back up driver all we did was phone the driver at 4.00pm advising were we thought we would be at 7.00pm and they got on the phone and found some B&B in that locality.
    Best of luck guys, this was my first long ride and I loved it, so much so i’m doing Lejog next year.


    Do the full off road route, over the old coach road etc….
    Nav is easy, we’ll signposted.
    You’ll enjoy it.


    After stanhope it’s all downhill. The start of the downhill is excellent with offroad tracks across moors for what seemed like miles n miles.


    Alston is slightly off the official route, but a pretty sensible place to stop on a two dayer. Other choices would be Garrigill or Nenthead (though you will be faced with a monster climb out of Garrigill).

    Basically once you get to Hartside on the halfway mark, it turns pretty hellish after some fairly sedate terrain. Then you climb out of Stanhope at the end of it all, like a wounded soldier crawling out of a bunker, and if you can still breath, you’ll fly for the last 40 miles wondering what you were previously moaning about.

    Avoid anything marked ‘alternative off-road route’ on road bikes and you’ll be fine. There’s only the one route really, with some small variations. Most of it is virtually traffic free, including the roads!


    looking at riding it myself next year so will keep an eye on this thread 😀


    We Did the C2C earlier this year in a day. The Sustrans route is a cracking ride. There are two or three pretty tough climbs but you certainly get rewarded with long fast descents and fantastic views. Hartside is a beauty but the climb out of Stanhope is something else. However, once that is over with the last few hours will fly by. The Waskerly Way is a nice steady descent where you can easily do 20+ mph for a good 45 mins or so. The last 10 miles aren’t the best but by that point we were past caring.

    I would say it is more than achievable for anyone with a reasonable level of fitness over two days. We were on hard tails with slicks and that was perfect for us. The slick tyres definitely helped keep the average speed up.


    I did it last year in a day. We went Whitehaven to Tynemouth via Nenthead, Allenheads and Roookhope. Almost all virtually traffic free.

    I agree with mtbben about being achievable by most people. Neither of us were super fit and both well over 50. We met a group who were doing the route over 2 days near Allenheads. They were just about to stop but looked as though they could have continued with us. I really felt they were missing a trick. For the sake of a few more hours, most of which are downhill, they wouldn’t have the satisfaction of doing it in a day even though they’d done almost all the hard stuff. And I bet it felt fairly tough for them getting up and going the next day.

    Most important to eat and drink even when you don’t feel like it.

    The route is very well signed but even so if you miss one sign it could take you a while to realise it so I’d use a GPS. The signage after the end of the Waskerley Way seemed poor. My GPS had packed up in the atrocious rain we’d had and we spent a couple of miserable hours doing the last few miles in the dark.

    We used a full suss Scott Spark 40 with slicks on and a pretty old Peugeot road bike. The road bike was fine except for the off road bit after Roockhope where the track was covered in water and there were some fairly big potholes that you couldn’t see.

    Most impressed by minipips effort. Remarkable.

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