The Across Wales Challenge Walk
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The Across Wales Challenge Walk Route Map and GPX Download
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The Across Wales Challenge Walk Details
Here’s an epic walking challenge that’s difficult, but with proper preparation, within the ability of a fit walker. The Across Wales Challenge Walk is a serious 73km challenge walk from the Welsh border to the sea, all undertook in 18 hours!.
It starts off around 500m from Anchor, Shropshire, slap bang on the Wales-England border, with little but the differing wheely bins to mark one nation from the next.
It then continues by following the Kerry Ridgeway, parts of the Glyndwr and Severn Ways before summiting wild Pumlumon.
Even if it’s mainly downhill after Pumlumon, you’ve still got a good 30km to go before arriving at the welsh coast at Aberystwyth.
If that’s whet the appetite, this challenge walk is held annually in early September, and is a fully organised event by the Across Wales Walk Association. Entries begin in early May, so you’ve got a few months to figure out whether you’re fit enough or not! If it’s not enough challenge, then there are usually a few hardy souls who set off the previous day for a double or even a triple crossing, with a quadruple crossing planned in 2015! Even if you’re not going to be the fastest, then a wooden spoon is sometimes awarded to the most ‘deserving’ participant, be that the person who’s had an absolute epic by almost drowning in a peat bog or fallen asleep in their car and missed the lot.
Remember to check out the official website for more insight on the challenge, as well as reports on the previous walks and how to enter – http://www.acrosswaleswalk.co.uk/. They’re quite clear on the level of fitness expected, for good reason, as this is a challenge walk. It’s not meant to be easy!! For more information on long distance walking, visit the Long Distance Walkers Association website.
Were it not for the logistical nightmare of the starting point, then this would make a good, but tough, weekend backpack – ideally wild camping on the summit of Pumlumon, and finishing the Sunday in some of Aber’s lively pubs. The most practical option would be to set off from Y Drenewydd (Newtown), perhaps getting a taxi to the starting point, as you can return to the starting point by train from Aberystwyth. Of course, if you’re undertaking the challenge event, then so long as you can get to Clun as a starting point (strange choice, considering there’s a station at Y Drenewydd), you’ll be returning in a coach after the challenge.