Lakeland Biathlon Challenge

6 Peaks / 23km walking AND 2 Passes / 40km cycling - be ready!

Our Lakeland Biathlon is a tough event circa 12 hours duration and involves two cycling legs combined with our 6 Peaks walking challenge as the core element. Setting out from Keswick on leg 1 you will cycle through Newlands Valley and over Newlands Pass to your start point in Buttermere. After a short break swopping cycling gear for walking gear we set out on leg 2. 

The second leg includes our full 6 Peaks Challenge and is a high level circuit around arguably the finest valley in England with its summits in close configuration. This is a strenuous walk that presents no technical difficulties. It starts and ends at the village of Buttermere, which is situated on the shores of the lake with the same name. We start from the Buttermere Dubs footbridge and then take the stone stepped path through Burntness Wood and up to Bleaberry Tarn before climbing the path to The Saddle and ascending Red Pike. We then continue along the ridge taking in High Stile and High Crag before descending the steep slopes of Gamlin End to Scarth Gap where we start our ascent to the twin summits of Haystacks. From Haystacks the path descends past Innominate Tarn and Blackbeck Tarn affording a superb view towards Green Gable, Great Gable and the mighty summit of Scafell Pike. The very fit may want to detour here to take in the spectacular views from Fleetwith Pike. However, for normal mortal beings, six peaks is usually enough for one day especially when you’ve still got a third cycling leg!

Our route next follows the path to Honister Hause and the famous Honister Slate Mine where we cross the road before starting the long slog up to the summit of Dale Head. On a clear day there are stunning views from the delightfully crafted summit cairn at Dale Head towards Blencathra, Skiddaw and the fells around Newlands Valley. From Dale Head we now embark on the eastern leg of our circuit following the ridge path along Hindscarth Edge and the left hand path along Littledale Edge before veering right to the summit of Robinson – our final peak. The route back is then reasonably straightforward, traversing rough open moorland of High Snockrigg (which can offer spectacular sunset views over Red Pike) before starting out on a knee jarringly steep descent to the Newlands Road above the church.

After you’ve finished leg 2 there will be a short break whilst you change back into your cycling gear before we begin leg 3 – heading along Buttermere Valley to the summit of Honister Pass – the last big effort on your challenge! From here we descend to Seatoller and follow a gentle winding road along Borrowdale Valley to your finish point back in Keswick. The is a tough event and should not be under-estimated; however, if required there is a contingency exit at Honister Slate Mine which offers the chance to miss out the final two peaks and cycle directly back to Keswick. True to our environmental principles participants are advised that minibus transport will only be used in an emergency – so you will be relying on foot power throughout the day with only a contingency support vehicle in attendance.

We recommend that in the lead-up to this challenge, participants work on building up their stamina with weekly cardio-vascular exercise of a minimum of 1 hour per day, 5 days per week to build up their calf + quad muscles. In addition, they should be doing a regular bike ride at least every couple of weeks building up to 40km over roughly 2.5 hours duration. We can help you prepare for this event – for  information about our pre-selection / training day click here.


Arrival Day

Check into your accommodation in Keswick followed by early evening team briefing. Alternatively, we can arrange transfers from Penrith Rail Station.

Second Day - Leg 1 - Cycling

After an early breakfast we set off at 07:00 on the cycling leg making our way through Portinscale village and Stair to the Newlines Valley road. The going is generally easy with a steady incline to the summit of Newlands Pass and we then descend to Buttermere.
Target time 1.5 hour

Second Day - Leg 2 - Walking

Peaks include Red Pike, High Stile, High Crag descending to Scarth Gap followed by Haystacks before making our way to Honister Slate Mine for a short break. The second part takes in Dale Head and Robinson and we descend via High Snockrigg to our start point at the base of Newlands Pass.
Distance 23km, Target time 8-9 hours. Terrain – Mixed broken ground with steep ascents and descents and final 2 peaks mostly grassy slopes and undulating ridge lines.

Second Day - Leg 3 - Cycling

After a short break changing into our cycling gear we ride down Buttermere Valley passing Gatesgarth on our way to the summit of Honister Pass. This is our final big push and we then descend to Seatoller following a gently undulating road to Keswick.
Target time 1.5 hours, Distance legs 1 and 3 = 40km

Key Information

  • Advance booking required, minimum 8 weeks notice
  • Minimum group size 8, or reduced number by prior arrangement
  • Bring your own cycling and hiking gear
  • We provide mountain bikes but participants may bring their own road bikes if preferred
  • We have First Aid and emergency equipment and are qualified to use it
  • Meeting point is Keswick or Penrith Railway Station
  • We can arrange an extra transfer from Penrith Railway Station if required

Package Includes

  • One day cycling and walking with experienced and licenced guides
  • Accommodation for two nights
  • Breakfasts and packed lunch
  • Training guidance information
  • Personal kit list and advisory service
  • 2-way radio communication – all staff
  • Cycle, helmet, spare inner tubes 
  • Contingency support transport
  • Trekking poles if required
  • Cotswold Outdoor Discount Voucher – 15% discount
  • Photographic highlights of your event uploaded to Dropbox
  • Local information plus second to none service with passionate staff!

Duration: 1 Day

Activities: Cycling and Walking 

Suitable for: Private and corporate groups looking for a charity fundraiser, personal development and/or team building event.

Comments: Overall this is a tough medium grade event with a final sting in the tail and requires a high level of fitness to maximise your chance of success. A level of cycling proficiency on tarmac is essential; however, participants do not require prior mountain walking experience.

Prices from: £250

Call: 017687 75337

Booking Enquiry

Package Prices


From £275

Guest House – bed & breakfast + packed lunch
15% off Cotswold voucher
Head torches and Trekking poles included
Price is per person

Enquire now


From £250

Hostel – bed & breakfast + packed lunch
15% off Cotswold voucher
Head torches and Trekking poles included
Price is per person

Enquire now


From £300

Hotel – bed & breakfast + packed lunch
15% off Cotswold voucher
Head torches and Trekking poles included
Price is per person

Enquire now

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