Only 7 days before the Great End to End challenge begins, from John O Groats to Lands End. Gary Fear is cycling 900 miles in aid of Shropshire and Staffordshire Blood bikes. So far he has raised over £3,000 for this amazing adventure and is hoping to raise as much money as he can for Shropshire and Staffordshire Blood Bikes. there is still time to donate via www.end-2-end.co.uk Here is our route and day to day guide of where we will be. You can follow our progress via www.end-2end.co.uk or via Facebook by following ‘BobbyThe Blood Biking Bear’ who will be making the journey with our Blood Bikes and 3 x Cyclists. If you would like to join us or support us along our journey, you’d be most welcome. Or why not send us a message via our Facebook Page. Let the adventure begin.
Fri 22nd May – John O’Groats to Inverness
Starting at John O’Groats, we’ll heading South on the A99 to Wick. After around 35 miles, we’ll join the A9 at Latheron and follow this to Helmsdale, Brora, Golspie and then Dornoch, taking the Dornoch Bridge across the Firth of Dornoch to Tain. We’ll stay on the A9 to Alness, then Evanton and cross the Cromarty Bridge to skirt Culbokie and then head to North Kessock. Final leg of that first day takes us across the Kessock Bridge to Inverness.
23rd May – Inverness to Perth
Starting at Inverness, we’ll rejoin the A9 and head towards Loch Moy and then skirt Carrbridge on the edge of the Cairngorm Mountain Range and head for Aviemore. We’ll stay on the A9 to Kingussie, then Newtownmore and continue skirting the foot of the Cairngorms before heading away to lower ground and going through Pitlochry and Dunkeld before ending the second day in Perth.
24th May – Perth to Johnstonebridge
Leave Perth and (again!) join the A9 which seems to go on forever. We’ll head South West to Auchterarder and shortly after leave the A9 and join the A823, following this to Burnfoot, the Yetts of Muckhart, Rumblingbridge, Powmill and Hill End before hitting Dunfermline and then Rosyth. We’ll then join the A90 and head directly South over the Forth Road Bridge to Queensferry and skirt to the West of Edinburgh on the A720 City of Edinburgh Bypass. We’ll join the A702 for a mile or so and then the A703 and then the A701 to Milton Bridge. We’ll then join the B7026 to Auchendinny , Howgate and Leadburn and we’ll rejoin the A701 to head South West to Romannobridge and Blyth Bridge. We’ll remain on the A701 heading South to Broughton. Stanhope, Tweedsmuir, Glenbreck and Moffat. Finally, we’ll join the B7076 for the final few miles to Johnstonebridge.
25th May – Johnstonebridge to Preston
We’ll start off on the B7076 and head towards Dinwoodie Mains and then Lockerbie. We’ll stay on the B7076 which runs alongside the A74(M) for some distance to Ecclefechan, Kirtlebridge, Kirkpatrick and then Springfield which is just a short distance from Gretna and Gretna Green. We head over the border back into England and take the A6071 to Longtown then head South on the A7. The A7 take us to Westlinton, Blackford and Harker and then cross over the M6 (we’ll really feel like we’re heading in the right direction now) to take us to Carlisle. In Carlisle, we’ll take the A6, cross the M6 again and head for Low Hesket, High Hesket and Plumpton before coming to Penrith. We’ll follow alongside the M6 for a while before crossing it again several times through Lowther, Hackthorpe and Little Strickland. We’ll split away from the M6, staying on the A6 still and climb Shap Summit which is one of the hardest climbs of the trip. We’ll stay on the A6 to Garnett Bridge and Watchgate and shortly end up in Kendal. After stopping for the mandatory Kendal Mint Cake, we’ll continue on the A6 to Heversham, Milnthorpe, Beetham, Borwick and Carnforth before hitting Bolton-le-Sands and then Lancaster. We’ll stay on the A6 through Galgate, Forton and Garstang. The final stretch of the day keeps us on the A6 through Catterall, Bilsborrow, Barton and then into Preston.
26th May – Preston to Wolverhampton
We’ll leave Preston on the A6 and head through Walton-le-Dale, joining the A49 Wigan Road to head through Leyland and Euxton and skirt to the West of Charnock Richard before heading into Wigan. We’ll take the A573 Warrington Road to take us to the East of Newton-le-Willows and then to Winwick to the North of Warrington. We’ll head into Warrington and take the A49 to Stretton where we’ll join the A559 Northwich Road taking us through Antrobus, Great Budworth and then Lostock Gralam where we’ll join the A556 and then the B5082 Holmes Chapel Road. This will take us over the M6 where we’ll join the A50 towards Cranage and Holmes Chapel. We’ll continue heading South down the A50 towards Brereton Green and Arclid Green and then take the A5011 to Talke where we’ll join the A34. We’ll stay on the A34 into Newcastle-under-Lyme and head out to cross over the A500 and head towards Trentham Gardens and then Stone. We’ll continue on the A34 to Stafford where we’ll probably stop for a photo at the Sun Inn who are paying for our cycling shirts. From Stafford, we’ll head out on the A449 Wolverhampton Road through Rising Brook. We’ll go under the M6 and head for Penkridge, staying on the A449 through Gailey and Coven before heading into Wolverhampton for the night where we’ll be joined by family for a meal.
27th May – Wolverhampton to Bristol
We’ll leave Wolverhampton on the A449 and head towards Womborne, Himley and then skirt to the West of Kingswinford. We’ll stay on the A449 to Stourton and Whittington and then go through Kidderminster. From Kidderrminster, we’ll stay on the A449 and head to Hartlebury, Crossway Green and Ombersley before entering Worcester. From Worcester, we’ll take the A38 to Kempsey then turn right onto the A4104 to Upton-by-Severn and we’ll turn left to head South on the B4211. The B4211 will take us to Longdon and then we’ll cross the M50. We’ll cross the A438 and continue on the B4211. We’ll then join the A417 and head to Hartpury and Maisemore where we’ll follow along the banks of the River Severn for a short time. We’ll then head into Gloucester and follow the A430 round the city before heading South on the A38. We’ll stay on the A38 through Hardwicke, Moreton Valence, Whitminster and Cambridge where we’ll be a short distance from the M5 motorway. We’ll continue on the A38 to Newport, Stone, Whitfield, Alveston and Rudgeway before reaching Almondsbury on the outskirts of Bristol. We’ll continue through Patchway and Filton as we enter the centre of Bristol where the day finishes.
28th May – Bristol to Okehampton Sourton Cross
We’ll leave Bristol on the A38 through Bedminster and head through Barrow Gurney and Lulsgate Bottom, passing Bristol Airport before heading on to Redhill, Lower Langford, Churchill and Winscombe. We’ll stay on the A38 to Axbridge and Lower Weare then we’ll cross the M5 to head towards East Brent and then follow to the Wset side of the M5 towards Burnham-on-Sea and then continue on to Bridgwater. From Bridgwaetr, we’ll stay on the A38 towards North Petherton and West Monkton before entering Taunton. We’ll head out of Taunton, staying on the A38 towards Bradford-upon-Tone, Wellington and Sampford Arundel. We’ll cros the M5, reach Appledore, cross the M5 again and then join the A361 to Sampford Peverell. On the outskirts of Tiverton, we’ll turn left onto the A396 to head South and run along the side of the River Exe where we’ll enter Bickleigh and take the A3072 to Crediton. We then need to take Four Mills Lane to Cheriton Bishop where we join the A30. We follow the A30 to South Tawton and then head along the South side of Okehampton.
29th May – Okehampton Sourton Cross to Lands End
We’ll leave Sourton Cross on the A30 and the first place we’ll reach is Liftondown. We’ll stay on the A30 to Launceston, Tregadillett, Polyphant, Bolventor and Temple before we reach Bodmin. At Bodmin, we stay on the A30 to Lanivet, Belowda and then Indian Queens. We’ll continue to Chapel Town, Mitchell, Carland Cross and then stay on the same road to Zelan, Blackwater and then we’ll skirt to the North of Redruth. Well stay on the A30 to Illogan and the North side of Camborne and continue to Connor Downs and then Hayle. We’ll stay on the A30 through Canonstown and Crowlas before reaching a roundabout where meet the A394 and continue on the A30 to the West to head through Penzance and Drift. We stay on the A30 to Sennen where we are around a mile from the end of our challenge.