Route revealed for The Heb 2016
The routes for the 190km two-day multi-sport event, The Heb – Race On The Edge 2016, have been announced. The challenge takes place in September on the Hebridean islands of Benbecula, North Uist and South Uist.
Organisers Durty Events are keen for a wide spectrum of people to compete in the weekend race, from seasoned racers to enthusiastic newcomers. Sports will include “mountain biking and off-road running with a bit of kayaking and some easy navigation”. There are solo and pairs categories. After each day of racing, competitors will return to the camping area at Benbecula, allowing for a well earned rest and refuel.
1st day of The Heb
Benbecula will be the starting point for the 120km route round North Uist on September 3. Participants begin with a coastal ride to North Uist, followed by running and trekking on Eaval mountain (shorter options available).
Then there is a beautiful moorland bike ride to the uninhabited intertidal island of Vallay for a bit more running and trekking (short options possible), followed by the hop to Lochmaddy for a fun kayak section and a bike ride back to Benbecula for a night under the stars.
2nd day of The Heb
Day two amounts to 70km and involves a spectacular North to South journey from the overnight camp to Kilbride on South Uist. It includes epic riding on the machair and firm sands of the west coast beaches, as much running and trekking as you can handle on Beinn Mhor and Hecla before kayaking off the stunning coast between South Uist and Eriskay. This will be followed by an event party at the Polochar Inn, Lochboisdale.
… But what is the course really like?
Organisers have had a number of enquiries asking how hard the Heb – Race on the Edge course really is. Paul McGreal, of Durty Events, says: “With ‘short cut’ options built into the route on both days and no extremely tough route choices on the cards, The Heb has been designed to be totally achievable and fun for all those taking part.
“We’ve simply selected the best bits for an amazing but challenging adventure. That said, the course has been designed in such a way that you’ll be able to push yourself if you are an experienced multi-sport athlete.
“When it comes to route navigation we are keeping it really simple. Competitors will be issued with a map and knowing whether to turn left or right at a road junction will be useful. However we won’t be testing their micro-navigation skills, though these might come in handy if they elect to go up all of the optional hills. We’ll even stick the occasional marker in at some key locations.
“And for those who are a bit nervous of kayaking they needn’t worry either. Sit-on-top boats, paddles and buoyancy aids will be supplied and competitors definitely won’t need to be experienced kayakers to take on the short and fun paddling sections, though it wouldn’t do any harm if they’ve been in a kayak before the event.”
The aim is that The Heb will be a stunning and achievable journey through the best of the Hebrides with the added bonus of ferry journeys with event sponsor Caledonian MacBrayne. Organisers are encouraging all those looking for a stunning adventure challenge on foot, bike and kayak to sign up now.
I will be doing this event, will you?