Next Edition: 2019.
In The Mercian Challenge you take on 100 miles of the Offa’s Dyke footpath from Chepstow to Montgomery, tackling the 703m Black Mountain, and a total of 5180m of elevation along the way; This is no ordinary 100 mile event. It is a immense challenge in its own right, hence the 42 hour cut off time.
You can download the map and GPS pack here. It includes
- GPX files for upload to a GPS device
- A Google Earth KML file
You can also download an image of each checkpoint locality here
Offa’s Dyke footpath starts on the shore of the Severn Estuary in Sedbury on the outskirts of Chepstow. The path then heads into Chepstow itself, passing on the opposite side of the river from Chepstow Castle.
The path then follows the River Wye for 18 miles to reach Monmouth and indoor checkpoint 1. You then strike West then North West for 17 miles, passing Whitecastle to the village of Pandy and indoor checkpoint 2.
You must now steel yourself for the mountain section ahead. Climb rapidly to Hatterrall Hill (531m) and then along the spectacular 8 mile ridge to Black Mountain, reaching 703m before following the path off the ridge shortly before Hay Bluff, descending all the way to reach major indoor checkpoint 3 at Hay-on-Wye (51.3 miles).
An undulating section now follows as far as Gladestry before a sharp climb up and along Hergest Ridge before a long enjoyable descent to indoor checkpoint 4 at Kington.
It’s a immediate climb out of Kington to Rushock Hill, following the dyke earthworks to contour then descend Herrock Hill, before contouring around Burfa Camp towards Evenjobb (Einsiob) and they Dolley Green and then on to Knighton (Tref-Y-Clawdd) to the indoor checkpoint 5 at the National Offa’s Dyke Visitors Centre.
You then cross the River Teme and climb to pick up the Dyke and traverse the Clun Hills, skirting Newcastle, and Church Stoke before finally diverting off the path to reach the finish line of The Mercian Challenge in Montgomery.