Malin to Mizen Cycle 2019
Ireland, the Emerald Isle, is home to stunning natural beauty, the friendliest nightlife and our Irish cycling challenge. Malin to Mizen lets you take in the breath-taking natural beauty of the country from the saddle, travelling 427 miles.
Starting at Ireland’s most northerly point, you’ll zip past lakes and mountains that dominate the landscape, rivers that twist through valleys, visit historic towns before arriving at the coast and gazing the spectacular views.
Join us for a challenge you’ll never forget and help us care for more people living with a terminal illness.
Day by day, here’s what you and your trekking partners will get up to on your adventure.
Trek grading: Tough
Malin Head to Buncrana 30 miles
You’ll meet the group and cycle leader at Malin Head, register and then head out for half a day’s cycling. You’ll experience a bit of everything in these first 30 miles, from rugged landscape and striking coastal views to short, sharp hills that’ll ease you into the next days’ riding. If you’re meeting at Belfast, they’ll be a coach to get you up to Malin Head.
Buncrana to Enniskillen 71 miles
The day begins with a flat section, moving on to quiet country roads and then a steep climb to test your stamina. It’s not the last test of the day though with a variety of rolling hills following, including a few that’ll really have you sweating and panting.
Day 2 is possibly the hardest stage but the rewards for these challenging ascents are great views over the emerald country as we pass Newtonmore. You’ll also cross some ancient rivers as we ride down to Enniskillen, a town named after Cethlenn, a mythical Irish goddess, where you may even catch a glimpse of the famous Enniskillen castle, used in battles and sieges since the 1400s.
Enniskillen to Longford 59 miles
A flatter day than the one before to let your legs recover, although you’ll still be attacking the occasional undulation. You’ll make your way down past the many lakes in this part of the country that dominate the landscape. The roads here are a joy, winding and with better surfaces than the previous days, making them faster too as we head for the bustling town of Longford.
Longford to Nenagh 84 miles
This stage may be over the flattest terrain of the challenge but we’ll really pile on the miles on this, the longest day. The minor roads offer smooth asphalt and give plenty of opportunity to get in close in our mini peloton and get in the draft – although make sure you push some wind for your fellow competitors too!
You’ll end the day in the historic town of Nenagh. The castle was built around 1216 and the town has had a roller coaster history, involving Henry VIII, medieval priories and it was even captured in the Williamite Wars and burnt!
Nenagh to Mallow 68 miles
The mountains of the south-west will provide a dramatic backdrop for much of your ride today. You’ll see parts of the Silvermine Mountain range, famed for the mining of silver for over 700 years.
Despite the mountains, today is about speed over the fairly flat route, although it gets hillier as the guide takes you closer to the mountains.
Mallow to Clonakilty 64 miles
It’s a really mixed day today. From Mallow, the ‘Crossroads of Munster’, you’ll ride past the remainder of the mountains towards the south coast. Flat sections are interrupted by some challenging climbs, but you’ll be rewarded with some stunning views of countryside and coast. The day ends at Clonakilty, a hubbub of culture and night life. It also boasts the tidal Clonakilty Bay which means…you’ll have made it to the coast!
Clonakilty to Mizen Head 51 miles
As you head west towards the final destination, we see glimpses of the beautiful coastline during the morning. Fittingly, the final afternoon offers probably the best and most stunning scenery of the whole trip as we reach Mizen Head and bring a fantastic challenge to a close.
After staying overnight at Mizen, you’ll be transferred by bus back to Cork, Dublin or Belfast.
This itinerary is complex and subject to change.
By taking on this once in a lifetime challenge for Marie Curie you will help us care for more people living with a terminal illness. And when you join us, we’ll help you have a trek you’ll never forget. You’ll get:
- training guides, hints and tips to get you ready for your big challenge
- lots of fundraising ideas in your welcome pack - if you’re keen to get started with your fundraising right away, check out these ideas
- access to a local community fundraiser who’ll advise you and help you smash your target
- two Marie Curie representatives who’ll trek the entire way, join you on a training day and organise a post-trek reunion
- we’ll set up a Facebook group just for your trek, so you can chat with your fellow trekkers before the trip starts
- a 15% discount at Cotswold Outdoors to help with your gear buying.
This challenge is organised through Sport Ecosse. Sport Ecosse was set up in 2008 by Kevin Gerrie. With over 20 years of event management experience, Sport Ecosse organise highly professional and tailored cycling challenges in some of the world’s best landscapes.
Frequently asked questions
Do I need to sign up online?
Signing up online is quick and easy to do and it saves us vital money to put towards supporting people living with a terminal illness. The registration form is also available to download and print. If you are not able to sign up right now, why not save this page to your favourites so you can sign up online later?
Who can take part?
Anyone over the age of 18 who is looking for a challenge is able to take part. The group size will be a maximum of 50 riders. The majority will be on their own, but some will go with friends, partners or relatives.
This event will be tough and exhilarating, but will be fantastically rewarding and suitable for anyone with a bit of grit, determination and willingness to work as part of a team.
How fit do I have to be?
All our challenges are designed to suit people who are fit and have trained to take part – the fitter you are the more you will enjoy the adventure. We expect all participants to be prepared for challenging days cycling up to 140 kilometres. This challenge is not suitable for those who have never cycled before.
Will I need specialist kit?
We will send you a recommended packing list in your welcome pack which will detail any specialist equipment you may need.
What is not included in the package?
- registration fee
- personal spending money
- your own personal kit
- tips and gratuitiest
- travel insurance.
What food and drink will there be?
A typical breakfast will consist of bread, cheese, eggs, salads, cake, jams, tea and coffee.
Lunch will be hot pasta or baked potato meals. Evening meals will include meat, chicken or fish with potatoes, pasta or rice, salads, vegetables and fruit.
Please let us know in advance of any special dietary requirements.
How will I be supported?
Beforehand: You will be sent a fundraising pack with great tips on how to meet your sponsorship target. We will be in touch regularly and will organise a briefing day where you’ll meet other participants and hear more about the event.
During the trip: Your group will be accompanied by a medic, cycle leader and bike mechanic as well as a Marie Curie representative. Local guides will escort the group along the route. Your luggage will be transported to each night’s accommodation.
Can I cover the cost of the trip myself?
We ask you to raise a minimum of £1,900. After trip costs, a minimum of £1,000* will go directly to Marie Curie, as well as anything you raise over the minimum sponsorship. If you would like to pay for the trip costs yourself please contact us on 0800 716 146 for further information.
* Based on minimum participant numbers
What will the weather be like?
Day time temperatures may be 10-15°C with pleasant night time temperatures around 2-5°C. You should be prepared for rain as well as strong winds.
How can I help limit the environmental impact of travelling abroad for this trek?
Marie Curie is committed to responsible tourism. This challenge is organised by our tour operator, Sport Ecosse Events, which will provide guidelines on responsible tourism.
What are the deadlines for my sponsorship money?
We require the 80% minimum of £1,520 by 22 March 2019. The remainder of the sponsorship is due four weeks after you return from the event.
If you have any further questions please call the events team on 0800 716 146 or email email@example.com.