Thursday 23 October 2014

Everesting in Devon - "Literally a mountain to climb"

Thanks to Niall for sending us this great little story. With the clocks due to go back on Saturday and the days getting much shorter, I wonder if we'll have anymore UK everests this year...?

By Niall Todd
Everesting in Devon, September 27th


It was in a cycling magazine I first properly became aware of ‘Everesting’, one of Laurie’s rides I think.  I read it, was impressed but cast it aside with notions that such riders must be a tad insane.  Some days/weeks later another magazine and another Everesting story…. a few days later something clicked and I considered it a great end of season goal.  My TT season ending end of September, holiday in the sun booked for October 3rd – I figured if I was to attempt such a thing then the last weekend of September would be the one.  Saturday 27th was chosen, with Sunday as a plan B in case the weather was horrendous.


Where to do it was the next question.  Living near Dartmoor, there’s no shortage of the up and down stuff and soon a list of 3 was put together.  I sought advice and had some great comms with riders already having done an Everest and Gulworthy Hill was eventually chosen.  Not the longest or steepest (just under 1.5miles @ average 6%) but lots of logistical benefits in being close to home (easily accessible spares!) and a hill I know very well.  It’s also fairly sheltered compared to others on the moors – so, hill chosen!!

Sunday 19 October 2014

Pushing Natural - Nutritional Advise Website

Here's a small interview I was asked to do by a nutritional advise company called Pushing Natural.

Interesting website focusing on nutrition in endurance sports. Without doubt one of the most important things to get right during an 'Everesting'.!Interview-with-Everester-Laurie-Lambeth/c1md8/729B48B3-F61D-4240-9945-95795C54BC6F

Friday 3 October 2014

Everesting Solo "I felt I could ride no further"

Richard Seipp highlights the value of support riders after Everesting Mam Tor in Derbyshire.

Everesting Solo
By Richard Seipp
I've read a number of accounts of people who've done their Everesting ride with friends and or with support teams. It was great reading of the camaraderie, mine was a bit different though, and hopefully this will give a bit of encouragement for those who find themselves without their soigneur or a riding partner when they are keen to give the Everesting challenge a go.

I heard of the Everesting phenomenon only 3 days before I embarked on my ride. The idea really grabbed my attention, and I spent a long evening working out which local hill would be best for an attempt.

I've a couple of mates who I can usually call upon for support for a ride such as this, but they were busy. My wife and children like helping out at sociable gatherings such as 24 hour races. I knew though, that asking them to spend the best part of 24 hours sat in a car by the side of the road miles from any other diversions other than counting sheep, would have met with either contempt, mutiny or me having to make reparations for many weeks after.

The sensible thing I guess, would have been to pick a future date to coincide with a helper or pal to ride with, but the long summer days were coming to an end, and the forecast for the weekend was looking really good. Oh, and I guessed that this being one of the Peak's classic climbs, that others would be eyeing it up. I later found out that this was indeed the case.

Friday 26 September 2014

If at first you don't succeed.... Have another go.

Second time lucky for Matt Barnes, after 113 repeats he triumphs on Condor Bottoms. 

By Matthew Barnes,

Everesting attempt #1

On 19th July, 2014, I had an attempt at Everesting. The concept
is very simple, you find a hill and cycle up and down it continuously
until you have climbed the equivalent of Everest, 8 848 m or
29 000 ft. There is a website where you can post your acheivement,
but only the first person to climb a specific hill gets on the hall of
fame. It also has to be the complete hill, you can’t just pick the
steepest section.

The profile and segment map for my ride on Strava
I picked a fairly local climb that went up to some wind turbines
along a dead end, so there shouldn’t be too much trafic. It had an
average gradient of 7%, which would mean that if I completed the
challenge I would have to climb it 39 times, a distance of 260 km.
I knew that it would be a very long day, so I packed a rucksack
with food and water which I would lock to a tree half way up the
climb as i didn’t have a support crew with me. I had also only told
a few people about my attempt, so I wasn’t expected much, if any,
company. In hindsight, a big mistake.

Thursday 25 September 2014

Everesting Snake Pass - "Cold beer never tasted so good"

Congratulations Paul Talbot for bagging Snake Pass, 27x up the 1100ft ascent and he even managed a
Hill Climb event with 2013 national champ Tejvan Pettinger during the challenge.

By Paul Talbot,

I rediscovered the joy and pain of cycling only five years ago and ever since I’ve been looking for new ways to suffer. I’ve managed to escape from Stravaworld but not before accruing an indefensible number of KOMs that I’ve now left for my younger, skinnier and harder fellow masochists to conquer. I’ve ridden many of the UK’s toughest sportives and survived to tell the tale, so what’s next? I’ve done Mount Teide and the cobbled climbs of de Ronde van Vlaanderen, so… the Alpes, the Pyrenees… the Himalayas?!

Everesting the Snake Pass seemed an inspired idea at the time – our club was hosting the J9/5 Open CTT hill climb in 2 weeks time and I’d been given the dubious privilege of being first rider off, so why not just carry on?

Wednesday 24 September 2014

Thiathlon Scene Shows 'Everesting' Interest

It's good to see the Triathlon Scene showing an interest in 'Everesting', here's a small feature written by Triathlete/Journalist Niamh Lewis for 220Triathlon. READ MORE...

Monday 22 September 2014

Tales From A 'Wannabe Everester'

It's no surprise to learn that not all 'Everesting' attempts are successful, and I guess if they were it may well take the fun out of it. Richard has kindly shared with us the ups and downs of trying to enter the Everesting Hall of Fame.

Tales of a 'wannabe Everester'
By Richard Gamble

I’ve been slightly obsessed with the idea of Everesting since i first saw the Box Hill attempt in August. I started road riding about 4 years ago and this year has been my best yet. I completed the Rapha Festive500 over Christmas and then was lucky to get a place on the Fred Whitton. I began increasing my ride distances in January, with my first century ride completed in February. I clocked up a further 11 centuries before the event and continued to push myself over the summer, completing several 200km audax rides and a 330km solo effort. I would just ride on the weekends, mainly on my own and discovered such pleasure from being out on my bike all day. Everesting sparked my imagination when looking for one final challenge before the end of the season. I wanted a ride that would push me to my physical and mental limits, to see where those limits were and find out how i would respond.


On 23rd August i made my first attempt on Kop Hill in Princes Risborough, Buckinghamshire. I’d not ridden it for several months and had forgotten quite how steep it was. The hill has since appeared in the Tour of Britain and is famous for its motorsport hill climb history. I arrived just before 7am, completely oblivious to what it would really take to Everest a climb. I rolled down to the bottom ready to start the first of the 95 required reps. The first ascent was a big shock, i straight away knew that this was not going to be my day, not the kind of thought you want going through your mind with so much still ahead. I thought i’m here now, i might as well crack on and just get in a decent ride and see how far i can get.

6x Up The Legendary Mount Ventoux

UK cyclist Chris Ward recently became the 13th and oldest Brit (at 51) to complete the gruwling Bicinglette Challenge in France, this was achieved by completing six ascents of Mount Ventoux in under 24 hours. Although not technically an 'Everesting' due to taking several different routes up the mountain, the challenge does mean climbing 8886m of elevation on one of the worlds most famous cycling mountains. Thanks to Chris for sharing his video of the days events.

By Chris Ward

'Garmin Gremlins' at the Zoo Down Under

Here at EverestingUK we like to concentrate mainly on all things UK based, having said that it seemed a shame not to share this great story sent in from overseas.

By Dr Oliver R. H. Hambidge

So, Everesting? Chances are that if you’re reading this you have a fairly good idea what Everesting is all about – the same hill, 8848m of vertical ascent and enough bloody mindedness to get the job done in one sitting. What you may have less idea about is the actual experience of doing it.

A lot of people talk about the psychological battle they faced and while it is undoubtedly a big undertaking I really didn’t have too many problems. Firstly, 16 hours was only the equivalent of one day at work with a solid evening of study, something I had spent a full year doing prior to sitting for my Anaesthetic Fellowship. This Everesting expedition would certainly be more fun as I got to spend the entire day on my bike; also I only had to tough it out for one day, not 365. Secondly, I was electively deciding to ride an expensive road bike up and down a hill in the middle of a very affluent suburb in Sydney. Whatever the outcome, I was going home to a hot shower, a hot home cooked meal and a hot pregnant girlfriend. In the context of 1.1 billion people worldwide not having access to clean drinking water I found it rather difficult to feel sorry for myself!

Saturday 13 September 2014

Causey Way Hill, Completes Everesting 'SSSS' Category.

By Laurie Lambeth, 

As entrees to the official ‘Hall of Fame’ continue to rise, it seems the word ‘Everesting’ is here to stay. A new climbing craze that’s grabbed the attention of cyclists all over the globe, myself included. When I attempted my first (Great Dun Fell) it was out of curiosity, the second (Hardknott Pass) was more to see if it was possible. But by the third (Off-Road Chapel House Wood) it was about working towards something…

After claiming Great Dun Fell, I received an email outlining plans of a new Elite category of ‘Everesting’ named SSSS. As if riding the height of Mt. Everest in one ride wasn’t enough, this new category would raise the bar even higher. The challenge would comprise of completing four separate ‘Everests’ of a specific type. SSSS stands for - Significant (An iconic climb)- Soil (An Off-Road climb)- Short (Under 200km/124miles) and Suburban (An Urban/Metro climb) One of these four rides must also be over 10,000m/32,808ft of elevation. This was a challenge on top of what was already a big undertaking, however, if someone dangles a carrot, its only human nature to try and take a bite.

When I tackled Hardknott Pass it was because I wanted too, and I would have done it regardless of any ‘SSSS Category’ as 30x up that hill was a challenge in itself. I did however know that by doing so I’d already have the ‘Significant’ and ‘Short’ rides ticked off my list. It was at this point I really started thinking about the SSSS, I needed an ‘Off-Road’ and ‘Suburban’ and one would have to be at least 10,000m. It seemed a big ask but I started sussing out climbs anyway, and after another three weeks I’d tackled my off road ride of Chapel House Woods in the Lake District. With three now under my belt, I had my eyes on completing the challenge before winter arrived. Up until this point I hadn’t really considered who else might be trying to tick off all four rides, I knew no one had completed it yet, but needed to find out if anyone was close. With a bit of investigation, I found that an Australian man named Jon Van Seters was almost there. Jon already had his Significant, Short and Suburban rides, and was only in need of an Off-Road effort to make him the first to complete the challenge.

As Australia’s spring time was just around the corner, our days here in the UK were beginning to shorten.  I knew Jon was planning his next ride but didn’t know exactly when it would be, I did however know that if I left mine until the following spring, he would undoubtedly beat me to it. With this in mind, I finalise the location for what will be the fourth and final ride.


Thursday 11 September 2014

O'Hara Bags Number Two - Leith Hill

Thanks to Ciaran for sharing his experience of Everest No.2
A great read indeed...

By Ciaran O'Hara,

Everesting Leith Hill


So even before I had even completed everesting Boxhill I always knew I would maintain my original date of September 6th and stamp my name on another climb. Boxhill was such an enjoyable day however it did not satisfy my hunger for pain and suffering. I wanted to set a personal benchmark, I wanted to know how far I could push myself and so I set out once again in search of this on Leith Hill in Surrey.

My body felt absolutely fine the week post Boxhill and was helped by a lot of stretching and a visit to my physio. I rode a hard 290km out and back over the Saturday and Sunday of the following weekend and then on Tuesday it all caught up with me and I had 3 nights on the trot with 12 hours of sleep. Unfortunately my grandmother passed away the following Sunday and so I was back in Ireland first thing on Monday morning.

Very selfishly, one of my first thoughts was that I wouldn’t be able to go for the hill on Saturday however I spent Monday morning alone in my parents’ home back in Greysteel  thinking and eventually coming to the conclusion that I could have no greater motivation and that I would do it in her memory. My grandmother was cared for by the Foyle Hospice, the charity I am raising funds for, back in the early 2000’s and I always remember going to a lovely Sunday morning mass there to visit her with a lot of my family.

So having decided to carry on with my challenge I spent the next two days at my grandmother’s house catching up with the rest of my family and trying to avoid the unlimited supply of tea and buns that are a necessity of an Irish wake. I said my final goodbye to my grandmother on Wednesday morning, spent the final few hours with my family and arrived back in London at 2am on Thursday night.

On Thursday morning two of my club mates, Alan Bruce and Roz McGinty, started getting the word out that I was going everesting again and organised support crew for various stages of the day. As usual the response was epic and I got my buzz back, the tingle down the back of my legs and the itch that I had felt a few days before my impromptu everesting of Boxhill, I felt ready once again. I had learn’t my lesson from the last time and decided not to announce my hill until the last minute. I spent Thursday night prepping food and organising my equipment and put the finishing touches together on Friday evening before heading off to bed at 2100.

Sunday 7 September 2014

Good Deals on Ex-display Exposure Bike Lights

Evans Cycles are currently selling off ex-display Exposure bike lights. I opted for an Exposure Maxx D  
Mk5 to use in my latest Everest attempt, the light had around a 45% discount and cost roughly £180.
Although not a cheap light they have a fantastic build quality and seemed an ideal tool to Everest with:

  • Very bright, 1600 lumens on full beam.

  • Long battery life, anything from 2 to 36 hours depending on setting (you can get a good 12 hours of very bright lighting)

  • The light also benefits from 'smart port technology' which allows it to be used as a back up power supply. This comes in very handy when combined with a Boost Cable as you can recharge your Garmin during a long ride.

Saturday 6 September 2014

Everesting Box Hill, August 18th 2014

It was only a matter of time before someone attempted to claim the popular climb of Box Hill in
Surrey. Thanks to Ciaran for sharing his great ride report of the days events.

By Ciaran O'Hara,

Impromptu Everesting of Box Hill

So the past couple of days I’ve been trying to figure out when I decided to attempt an Everest on Boxhill. It must have been back in April when I was full of energy and training hard and obviously not thinking clearly but I don’t regret this decision for one minute.

So I headed down to the hill early one morning in May and set out for a few hours of reps. I ended up doing 12 in just over 2 hours which was a decent pace and so I figured to Everest I could do 4-5 per hour which would be a total of 18-19 hours not including rest.

Through June and July I was on Muswell Hill and Ally Pally twice a week covering at least 1000 metres each morning. A lovely place to be when the sun is coming up and the roads are quiet. In early June I also discovered Epping Forest as I never realised how close I lived to it and this became my stomping ground for short sharp spins and scenic recovery rides.

As the summer rolled on my desire to ride never waned as I clocked up more hours, more miles and more metres every week. The long all day rides in the Chilterns and South Downs, spending up to 14 hours on the bike, were such a joy and if the sun had of stayed up I would have just kept going.

August soon rolled in and I began my final 3 week block of solid training. Motivation was high and towards the end of the first week I was starting to feel ready for Boxhill and the itch to begin my challenge felt deeper and deeper after every ride. I put in a good solid ride to Brighton one Saturday followed by an all out 2 hour sprint on the Sunday of ‘Hurricane Bertha’, a recovery ride Monday morning with Tuesday and Wednesday being hills and intervals respectively.

Wednesday 27 August 2014

Off-Road Everesting, Chapel House Wood

By Laurie Lambeth,

Riding your bike is great; it takes you away and allows you to think. It allows you to empty your head and start again, be creative and chase a goal. It allows you to focus your mind and push your body, or... you can forget all of that, and just ride.
If you are reading this and thinking of joining the latest climbing craze of “Everesting” be warned… you might just catch the “Everesting Bug” This, I guess, is what happened to me in June this year, after completing my first Everesting on GreatDun Fell. The 140 mile ride took 15 hours and totalled over 31,000ft of ascent. Three weeks later I was battling with the iconic Hardknott Pass, 30x up the savage climb was enough to claim Everest number two.

August was here and it already felt as if summer was fading, the days were shortening and the temperature cooler, not badly but it was a sign of things to come. I had an idea for a third Everesting, but knew it wouldn’t be too long before the changing seasons would bring a halt to any such plans.
Originally from a mountain biking background, I entered my first race aged nine, my older brother Jack raced and bikes were always in the family. This meant spending many a weekend up and down the country at whatever race was on at the time. It was a great experience and went on for a good few years, after which things drifted. I found myself dipping in and out of cycling up until the age of 27, I then started training and entered a few mountain bike enduro events. I did a bit of traveling and raced a few times in Australia, before finally returning home and buying a road bike in August 2012. I really enjoyed the switch to road cycling but would still miss the dirt now and again; with this in mind it seemed simple… The third Everest would be Off-Road.

To qualify as an Off-Road Everest, the whole ride would need to be ridden on a dirt road/track/path/MTB trail etc, but definitely no tarmac. I figured some kind of woodland fire track would fit the bill, hopefully not too rough and with a steady gradient. My partner Mairi and I headed to the Lake District in search of such a climb, after speaking to a few locals we were pointed in the direction of Chapel House Wood near Newby Bridge. It turned out to have what seemed a very suitable climb, 1.2 miles of fire track that twisted its way steadily up through the woods. The tracks surface was varied, overall it was pretty hard and compact, but with some looser rough sections thrown in too. The plan was to hopefully use the road bike with a set of 25mm, treaded winter tires, and as long as I picked my lines carefully it looked as if it should be possible.

Monday 25 August 2014

Everesting - Hardknott pass

By Laurie Lambeth,

On June 26th 2014 I was lucky enough to successfully complete my very first Everesting, 15 times up the highest road in the UK, Great Dun Fell. 140 miles and 31,234ft was enough to claim the hill before someone else beat me to it. It had taken over 15 hours and was a day I’ll never forget, however, it was also a day I was in no hurry to repeat.

Cycling is all about suffering! Well ok maybe not “all” about suffering (we all have those days when the sun is shining, the gentle breeze is on our back and the whole thing seems rather enjoyable) However, the more we push ourselves, the more it eventually starts to hurt. The only problem is that we forget all about this suffering almost as soon as it’s over, we can be half way through a tough event thinking to ourselves “there is no way I’m riding this again next year” “in fact I might even sell my bike” then by the time we’ve made it home, the pain is forgotten and we’re ready to sign up all over again. Less than 24 hours after completing Dun Fell, I was sharing ideas with my partner Mairi for a second Everesting. As I cautiously approached the subject, Mairi gave me an initial look as if to say “have you lost your mind!” thankfully this was soon followed by acceptance, and then even encouragement.

Choosing the climb wasn’t actually such a tough decision, after doing the highest I figured it was time to have a go at the hardest. Arguable the toughest and most feared climb in the UK is the legendary Hardknott Pass in Cumbria. The Romans build the original road back in the 2nd century, this linked the coastal fort at Ravenglass with their garrisons at Ambleside and Kendal. During the Second World War the area was used for tank training, this completely destroyed the original track. When the war was over, it was decided the road should be repaired. Only this time it was given a tarmac surface, this provided the first ever direct motor route between Eskdale and Ambleside.
As you approach the climb from Eskdale you’ll see an old fashioned red telephone box, next to this is a sign warning you of 30% gradients ahead. The climb raisers up through some trees and over a cattle grid, it’s not long before you are faced with a number of 25% switchbacks. Once you’ve tackled these the landscape opens up, and on doing so reviles why people fear this climb so much. In the distance the summit is almost visible, but before that are more sets of switchbacks, only this time steeper than the first. The final hairpin is a savage 30%, and is followed by a steep drag that only eases off once you’re near the top. The total ascent is around 970ft with a summit of 1,289ft, the pass would need climbing 30 times to reach the 29,029ft target.

Everesting the UK's Highest Road - Great Dun Fell,

By Laurie Lambeth,

I first heard about “Everesting” on an internet forum around the beginning of June 2014. The idea instantly caught my imagination, 29,029ft of ascent in one single ride! Was this madness or genius? I decided either way I had to find out.
 I live up in the North Pennines in a small village called Nenthead. Nenthead is an old mining village sitting at around 1,400ft, it is surrounded by hills, lots and lots of hills! It can be a cyclist’s heaven or maybe even hell depending on what you like? Luckily for me it’s the former.
I set about picking my Everesting hill. It didn’t take me long to decide I wanted to try and be the first to “Everest” Great Dun Fell and claim the highest road in England at 2,785ft. I’d ridden the fell once before, a tough experience in howling wind and so much fog I couldn’t even see the huge golf ball looking radar station that sits on the very top!

The hill climbs up 4.6 miles, it has an average gradient of 8% and in places kicks up to over 20%, by the time you reach the top you will have climbed around 2,070ft. For a successful Everest the hill would need to be climbed 15 times, this would total 140 miles and pass the 29,029ft target. This challenge would mean riding further, higher and for longer than anything I’d done before.

Whilst out on a Sunday training ride a few weeks after hearing about the challenge, I heard a rumour that I wasn’t the only one eyeing up Great Dun Fell for an Everest attempt. In fact I was told two people were attempting it that very same day! Thinking I might have missed my chance, I kept I close eye on the Everesting website for any new entries… 2 days passed but nothing appeared. The hill was still up for grabs, although with the extra interest, claiming it had now become a race against time.

Tuesday 24th June, Forecast looks ok for Thursday, not perfect but hopefully good enough to have a go. Thursday 26th I’m up at 5am and on my way to Knock at the bottom of Great Dun Fell. I park up at the bottom of the hill and waste no time getting kitted up. 6.30am I start the Garmin and it’s time to go… 

If I can average 1 hour per rep including breaks I’ll be all done by 9.30pm. I set off on my first accent, the wind feels stronger than forecast and it’s a headwind. I honestly think to myself at this point “this is not the day to be doing this, I’ll do a few reps as training and head home”. The first accent takes 37 minutes and the decent 10 minutes. The next 4 reps are just a few minutes slower. By 11.07am I’ve been riding for 4 hours 37 minutes, I’ve ridden 5 reps and climbed over 10,000ft.