It’s one of the toughest and most spectacular mountain bike challenges in the UK … and it’s happening in Huddersfield this weekend.

People can still enter the Colne Valley Mountain Bike Challenge which has routes of 20 or 30 miles … and people with electric bikes are also welcome to take part.

Although the quickest riders will complete the gruelling 30-mile course in just over two hours it’s not a race, it’s a personal challenge for riders to go round the course and enjoy it.

It was set up by Jonny Brook from Golcar in 2004 and raises money for Leymoor Cricket Club in Golcar and the 39th Parkwood Scouts who are now based at St Mark’s Church in Longwood.

The race starts at the bottom of the ultra-steep cobbled road Dodlee Lane at 9am on Sunday (May 14) and riders need to be there and registered by 8.30am.

People can still apply to take part in the race on the Colne Valley Mountain Bike Challenge website HERE until midnight on Friday. It costs £20 to enter – £23 if you want a T-shirt – although riders can still enter on the day when the fee is £25 but no T-shirt.

Jonny said: “People ask me why we give the riders such a gruelling start up Dodlee Lane but we’ve had 300 riders at times so we need to string them out before they get to Lamb Hall Road at Longwood which is quite narrow. Dodlee certainly does that.”

The 30-mile route takes in Outlane Golf Course, Scapegoat Hill, Pole Moor, Nont Sarah’s at Scammonden, Cop Hill, West Slaithwaite, Marsden, Tunnel End, Pule Hill, up Wessenden Head valley, back down Wessendenhead Road towards Meltham and across to Deerhill, Blackmoorfoot Reservoir, Linthwaite and down past Huddersfield Narrow Canal to Wellhouse, Bolster Moor and back to the start.

The 20-mile route is similar but cuts out a chunk after Marsden. The routes will all be clearly marked, there are marshals all around the course and there are four drinks stations which will also have biscuits and bananas to keep the riders’ energy levels up.

Riders are coming from as far away as Bournemouth, London, Newcastle and Lancashire.

Jonny said: “The scenery is absolutely stunning. We often don’t appreciate what’s on our own doorstep. We live in a fantastic area and people who travel to take part love it.”

Anyone aged 12 or over can ride in the challenge but under 16s must be accompanied by an adult at all times. Although a  fun event, the course is challenging and not for beginners.

  • Written by ANDY HIRST who runs his own Yorkshire freelance journalism agency AH! PR ( specialising in press releases, blogging, website content and copywriting.