About the Three Peaks Challenge Trial
The event is supported by and raises funds for the Longtown Mountain Rescue Team and other charities. It takes place each year, in March, arranged by the Cardiff Outdoor Group. The event was originally for inexperienced walkers looking to test their skills. Due to the circular nature of the trail, dropping out wasn’t an issue if one grew too tired. The route was also very safe, but it did require advanced map-reading, being perfect for those looking for a bit of a challenge while still unsure of their expertise. The very first Three Peaks Trial was organised and run by Chris Barber, with a small pool of twenty entrants. Back then, the event began at Crickhowell Youth Hostel, which no longer exists. The first person to ever complete the Three Peaks Trial was Alistair Mackinnon, who made it around the twenty-two mile circle in eight hours. The youngest person to ever complete the traditional Gold Route walk was the seven-year-old son of Neville Tandy, who brought his son along one year.
This event covers between ten to twenty miles depending on which route you choose. There are four routes to choose from: Bronze, Silver, Gold, and Platinum.
Bronze Route: An ascent of approximately 2000 feet, covers 10 miles. Incorporated in 2008 for those finding the Gold Route too demanding, good for beginners.
Silver Route: An ascent of approximately 4000 feet, covers 15 miles.
Gold Route: An ascent of approximately 5000 feet, covers 20 miles. The traditional Three Peaks Route.
Platinum Route: An ascent of approximately 5000 feet, covers 17 miles. Please be aware that although the Platinum Route covers less ground than the Gold Route, the paths taken on the Platinum Route are steeper and more challenging. The area is also more remote.
Charity Walk Course Information
Bronze Route: Abergavenny to Sugar Loaf Summit
Silver Route: Abergavenny to Blorenge and Sugar Loaf
Gold Route: Abergavenny to Blorenge, Sugar, Loaf, and Skirrid. This route is the original walk, never very far from civilization. However, it requires careful map-reading to find the most efficient route.
Platinum Route: Llanthony Abbey to Abergavenny, over Bal Mawr, Pen Cerrig Calch, and Sugar Loaf. A bus will leave from Guide Hall in Abergavenny promptly at 8:00 a.m. in order for the walk to begin at 8:30 a.m. from Llanthony Priory.
Upon completion of the event, you will receive a certificate celebrating your achievement, whether you completed the Bronze, Silver, Gold, or Platinum Route. Refreshments will also be available between 2:30p.m. and 7:30 p.m.