Challenge 3 – The National 3 Peaks Challenge

The National 3 Peaks Challenge – Jubilee Weekend, June 2012

The national three peaks challenge involves climbing the highest mountain in each of the three countries comprising Great Britain – England, Scotland and Wales. There are no set rules for the challenge but many people attempt to complete all three peaks in 24 hours, others opting for a more leisurely approach by completing one mountain per day over a long weekend, for example. Whichever way people plan to tackle the challenge, fittness levels, being well prepared and well organised are important considerations. Our aim is to complete the challenge in 24hrs on behalf of Children with Cancer UK who have kindly provided us with t-shirts to sport during the challenge – hopefully helping to raise more money and awareness on the way!

The challenge will involve a total ascent of almost 10,000ft, a distance of approx 27miles worth of trekking up and down the 3 tallest moutains in England Scotland and Wales together with a mileage total of well over 1000 miles of driving by the end of our trip! It will be a tough challenge to complete in 24hrs but i’m really looking forward to this one and confident we will make, subject to possible traffic! Fingers crossed!

What are the 3 Peaks?

Climb 1- We will be starting our challenge at Ben Nevis, the highest of the three mountains located in Scotland with an elevation of 4409 feet above sea level. Due to it’s height and location, ‘the ben’ is rarely without snow on it’s summit plateau.  The top of ‘the ben’ is perhaps not the ‘mountain peak’ most people would imagine and is actually a flat plateau large enough for 2 football pitches. At the highest point is a cairn where I hope to get a good group photo of us all sporting our Children with Cancer tops to mark the summit of climb 1!

Climb 1 – View from the top of Ben Nevis!

Climb 2 – Second in the challenge is Scafell Pike in the Lake District. At 3209 feet it is the lowest summit of the three, however, with it’s relentless and steep ascent, it is arguably the hardest of all. It is also considered the hardest to navigate in poor weather conditions so we may take the compass off Gal on this one if it gets bad! 😉

Climb 2 – Scarfell and Scarfell Pike

Scarfell Pike popping out the top of cloud!

Climb 3 – Finally the last mountain to climb is Snowdon in Wales, which we did via the Watkins Path (widely agreed as the most demanding route up to the summit of Snowdon) as training in Wales a few weeks back  and with an elevation of 3560 feet is the tallest mountain in England and Wales. Snowdon has a few different route options for the challenge but most share the same final steep ascent to the summit!

View from the top of Snowdon!

Climb 3 – Mount Snowdon above a cloud inversion!

Our Planned Itinerary

Saturday, 2nd June 2012

0700 – Team depart Watford for Nottingham to pick me up.

09:00 – Arrive Nottingham to collect me

09:30 – Depart for Ben Nevis (407 mile drive, 7hrs 20mins with 1 hr for breaks – 8hrs 30mins, with no traffic!)

18:30 – Arrive Hostel, Great Glen.

Sunday 3rd June 2012

Day is free until 17:00 when the Challenge Begins!

17:00 – Commence the climb of Ben Nevis, Scotland

22:00 – Complete Descent of Nevis. Dinner. Replenish and set off for drive to Scarfell Pike – 259 miles, 5hrs driving..ish)

Monday, 4th June 2012

03:30 – Arrive Wasdale Head, Lake District – quick food stop!

04:00 – Commence climb of Scarfel Pike. (Est 4hrs)

08:00 – Complete descent of Scarfell Pike then commence drive to Snowdon, Wales – 220 miles, 4hr 20min drive!

13:00 – Arrive Snowdon, Wales and commence climb of the 3rd and final mountain (Est 4hrs)

17:00 – Complete Descent of Snowdon!

If it all works as planned that will be the National 3 Peaks Challenge COMPLETE within 24hrs!

17:00 onwards – A well earned Beer, Sleep and Recover!

While we are confident in our ability to climb and descend each mountain within the “budgeted” time (or quicker!) however traffic during the driving segments will be our biggest problem and could unfortunately mean completing the challenge in over 24hrs should any traffic affect us enroute. Fingers crossed though!

If you would like to support us on our challenge and wish to donate to Children with Cancer UK – please click here for ways to donate to what is such a great cause in helping ind cures for children with cancer and support the amazing work Children with Cancer UK are doing!!

Thanks again for reading!


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3 thoughts on “Challenge 3 – The National 3 Peaks Challenge

  1. Another great blog entry! Typical you, in that you managed to find a few cloud inversion pictures to include! Once again I support your comments about Gal and the compass.

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