These events are, by their nature, impossible to police comprehensively. But we all need to know the rules of the game to keep it fair. If you break the rules, you’re out of the results.

1. Don’t be a dick

  • Leave no trace of your campsites, drop no litter
  • Stay on-trail: no riding around puddles / causing extra wear
  • Give way to other trail users
  • Be nice to any businesses that you visit along the way
  • Don’t break the law

2. Self Supported

  • Equal opportunity for riders from anywhere
    • Anywhere you stay has to be available to all riders e.g. a B & B, hotel, camp ground, under a tree
    • Staying with a friend, supporter, or even at your own house is not allowed
    • No food/equipment stashes
    • Unless you’re riding through your home town, no cheering supporters on-route
  • No sharing of equipment with other riders
    • Yes, you can swap jelly babies for energy bars with another rider
    • No, you can’t share essential equipment e.g. stove, tent
    • Yes you can (and should) help other riders if they are stranded. Providing help will not disqualify you. Receiving help probably will, so make your own decision on walking it out instead of getting help.
  • If you get in a powered vehicle (bus, car, train etc.), you’re out of the race
    • If your bike breaks and you have to walk 50 miles off-route to a town, you’ll have to get it fixed and return to the point where you left the trail under your own power to continue
  • Gifts/Nice people
    • If you bump into someone and they want to share a snack with you, that’s fine
    • If they offer to cook you dinner and/or put you up for the night, that’s going outside self-supported and is not allowed

3. The Route

  • You must follow the GPX file provided, you may leave the route as long as you return to the point of departure. Except:
    • In towns, you may leave the route to serve your food/sleeping/other needs. You do not have to rejoin in the exact spot to ride through town as prescribed. The exception to this is from The Peak District to Harrogate (not including Harrogate) – in this section there is quite a lot of sneaky urban off-road.
  • There will be no way-marking!

4 comments to Rules

  • jamie

    just come across your website researching for a couple of rides i am planning for next year (sarn helen way and c2c MTB) getting ready for tour divide in 2014. have to say have really enjoyed reading your articles. i am keen to have a go at your ewe route, what was the winning time this year?


    • Hi Jamie,

      Sorry for the massive delay in replying. No-one finished EWE in 2012! We all made it about 1/2 way.

      My intention is to make it a bit easier (realistically, better – less bogs and pushing) for 2013.

  • terry mynard

    Hi is it possible to start in the north and race to the south ? Thanks Terry

    • Sure, if you want to. But the route is chosen so that the climbs/descents work going north. So, in places, you will end up pushing up rocky trails then whizzing down smooth tracks.