The No Excuses South West is the perfect way to wake up those winter legs early on in the season, and help support our official charity partner, Alzheimer’s Research UK. Take in the splendour of the picturesque Dartmoor National Park, with options to test your metal on iconic climbs, and an opportunity to ride in the knowledge that your miles are making a difference.
Starting from Exeter Racecourse, we’ll take you through the beautiful Haldon Forest, before turning the pedals towards Dartmoor. Here the route will split, with the standard option giving you a chance to open the lungs as you trace the edge of the moor, taking in the River Teign. Following the epic route, you’ll pedal over the moor to meet the first big climb of the day from Dunsford to Doccombe, and continue onto Two Bridges, before turning back towards the coast.
For those wanting to test themselves, two more climbs await; a short, sharp punch up Dartmeet before a 12% lung opener up Widecombe, just under a mile long and where Chris Boardman once set a record – prepare yourself as both feature in author Simon Warren’s 100 Greatest Cycling Climbs. Don’t forget to look for Coffin Stone on Dartmeet, a place where coffin bearers would take rest whilst transporting coffins for burial!
All the hard work pays off on an exhilarating descent to Bovey Tracey (the reverse of the famous Haytor Vale climb). The standard route re-joins here, still with time to turn the pedals back towards the coast from Teignmouth, up to Powderham Castle, taking in the picturesque seaside villages of Dawlish, Dawlish Warren, Cockwood and Starcross. Save enough in the tank to blast your way up on the last climb of the day into Haldon Forest, before winding back into the venue for a well-earned finisher medal, and all for a great cause!