Advice on doing Lands End to John O’G

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  • Advice on doing Lands End to John O’G
  • Rickos

    I’m not going to ask anything specific to try and get as many replies as possible to cover everything that I may not have thought of. People who’ve actually done it or know someone who has please!

    This for a friend and their plan is to go from Lands End with a camper van following, then off on their own (him & wife) from Solihull to the finish.

    So advice on panniers, bike set up, clothing, stopovers, etc. would be most appreciated.


    the best place for them to look and ask questions is
    they have a forum dedicated to everything Land’s end- John o’ Groats…


    Cheers for that!


    Just had a look at that and it’s very good, so here endeth this thread.

    Cheers Couby.

    Premier Icon takisawa2

    Apparently its easier LE to Jo’G than Jo’G to LE.
    Dont know why.
    Brother-in-laws mate did it a couple of years ago.
    He wasn’t terribly fit & rode a semi-slick shod cheap(ish) mtb.
    Took him just under 2 weeks.

    rode a semi-slick shod cheap(ish) mtb.

    i live a few miles from lands end, its amazing how many people you see every summer riding off down the a30 like that or conversely on shiney new bikes decked out with aldi kit. i’d say that they outnumber the more seasoned riders.

    Apparently its easier LE to Jo’G than Jo’G to LE.

    prevailing wind is south west, so heading off from LE and going east then north it’ll be on your back rather than in your face.

    Look up a guy called Gethin Butler from Preston, he did it non stop in less that two days!!!!!!!!!!!!!. He got to the finish and was told he was "on" for the 1000 miles record, so he turned round and continued and got that as well!!!! 😯

    He was told by Sean Kelly once to slow down in the tour of britain many years ago as the stage had only just started, he said he was cold and wanted to get home and rode off!!

    Raced against him a few times, NOT AN ENJOYABLE EXPERIANCE.


    kingkongsfinger, isn’t he the guy that was told to turn for the 1000 but a cock up on the measuring left him just a couple of miles short or was that someone else?


    24 hrs – 509 miles @ 21.2 mph
    1000 miles@2 days 7 hours 53 minutes and 7 seconds= about 18 mph]
    **** HELL

    Premier Icon ransos

    I did LEJOG in 2007, over 12 days, We stayed in YHAs and B&Bs, which keeps the luggage weight right down compared with camping. I also like a hot shower in the evening, before heading to the pub to carbo load, courtesy of the local ale.

    One top tip I would give you on route planning, is to buy a superscale spiral bound Philips atlas. Tear out the pages you need, highlight the route, and then laminate the pages. You then have a lightweight, waterproof map for the whole journey.

    The theory about starting at LE is based on the prevailing wind, but you can’t rely on it so I wouldn’t worry about it. We had headwinds all the way to Scotland.

    Cornwall & Devon are by far the hardest part of the route, so if you make it as far as Somerset, you’ll be fine. Whatever you do, avoid the dual carriageway part of the A30. It’s a motorway in all but name. Dartmoor is beautiful, but a tough climb and very exposed. Some people go via Okehampton & Crediton instead.

    The bike I used was a Thorn Audax – ideally suited for this kind of trip as it is lighter than a full blown tourer, but will carry enough luggage if you’re not camping. I recommend Ortlieb panniers – tough as old boots.

    My daily distances were about 75 miles, I would advise a bit shorter at the beginning and a bit longer once you’re into your stride.

    As others have said, the CTC LEJOG forum is a great resource. There’s some posts from me on there under the same username.


    Magicsick will help you with panniers I believe


    Thanks ransos – very useful.

    If you want a really good guide book, try LE to JO’G The Great British Bike Adventure by Phil Horsley published by Cordee. I followed it and did it in 11 days, average 100m per day, very scenic includes the old Severn Bridge and up the Wye Valley so check it is still possible to cycle across the old bridge. It was an experience I have never forgotten.

    QUOTE "Gethin has set a new Land’s End – John O’Groats record (840 miles) of 1 day 20 hrs 4 min and a new 1000 mile record of 2 days 7 hrs 53 min."

    Rickos, a challenge for you!!!!!!!!!

    I think Clifton School on the A6 2 miles south of Penrith is or was the half way point.

    sorry to be anal,good luck on the endevour!

    Premier Icon crazy-legs

    Make sure there is transport at JOG to get you away from there ASAP once you’ve finished – the place is a right dump.

    I used to work at a bike shop that was on the LE-JOG route: we used to get all sorts of people on all sorts of bikes, everything from lightweight audax style to fully laden tourers that you could barely move!
    The maps idea is a very good one but it’s also a good idea to have a list of bike shops that you pass (or are nearby) in case emergency repairs are needed and a bail out option of where to stay if you don’t make full distance in the day for whatever reason.
    Start slow and/or short and get faster/further as you progress, no point killing yourself by starting with a 140-mile stage!

    Good luck. 🙂


    I suggest using a car 🙂

    Premier Icon DavidB

    I did the Phil Horsley route as well

    Here’s my story


    I did it a few years ago with Mrs BobLo on a tandem. ~1150 miles in 12 days camping and self supported.

    Agree with the Wye Valley diversion plus go over Arran, up Kintyre and the Great Glenn. Avoids the central industrial belt of Scotland and all the aggro that goes with it.

    We went south to north, about 85 miles per day which is a bit too much to really enjoy it when fully loaded.

    Agree with the mapping advice. Anything around 1:200k will do, colour copied and laminated to save from the weather.

    Don’t take too much ‘crap’. If you must have some, buy it en route 😛

    What I mean is be ruthless with what you carry. Get the best (i.e. lightest)gear you can afford and be brutal with your personal kit. Anything you really need and have forgotten, you can buy.

    If you’re camping, buy your food at then end of each day (or eat out) don’t carry stuff all day that you won’t need.

    Have a plan for the journey (rout, stop overs etc) but be prepared to be flexibel and above all, ENJOY IT!!



    Cheers guys, I’ll pass on the record time as a challenge to them!

    Nice one with the bike shops idea too, crazy-legs.

    I am going to do it this year end of may jog>lands end route as I live in somerset so will prob get to the finish and cycle home after

    I am going to do it self supported camping and b&b when it suits me.

    not really got a route but will take some sort of route when I go and will prob have a fresh route each day that could change on the move it is an adventure after all.
    I am pretty relaxed about the whole ride and not making too much of an agenda

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