At Westbrook Cycles, our staff and customers love a cycling challenge - and cycling challenges do not get much more iconic than doing a coast to coast ride in the North of England. One of the most unique challenges for any cyclist, there’s something pretty special about dipping your toe in two different seas, at the beginning and end of the challenge.
Although there are many different endurance cycling challenges available, a coast to coast challenge is certainly one of the most rewarding and symbolic, with the sea providing the perfect finishing point. Regardless of whether you complete the coast to coast for charity or not, with friends or alone, the ride is immensely fun.
There are a few different routes to choose from, with the fittest of cyclists completing the journey in a single day. All of the routes start in the North Sea, and finish in the Irish Sea.
Coast to Coast Bike Choice
The best bike for a coast to coast challenge depends upon a lot of different factors, and those cycling the challenge incorporating areas of off-road, will undoubtedly want to choose a mountain bike. Those sticking to roads will undoubtedly want to choose a road bike.
There’s also more considerations than journey type, for example - how much luggage you need to carry on your journey. Mountain Bikes and Hybrid Bikes can accommodate luggage, but stripped down lightweight race bikes will not be able to. That is of course, not an issue if you are completing the challenge in a day, or are stopping at a B&B en route. Those with a support car doing the journey will also not have to worry about carrying luggage.
For those completing the challenge and travelling on the popular off road routes, we recommend a good quality hardtail mountain bike. These bikes provide the perfect balance between off road comfort and pace, with full suspension choices burning a lot of energy in the upwards & downwards travel of suspension with every pedal.
The Scott Aspect 760 Hardtail Mountain Bike is a good choice, at an excellent price point. Featuring front suspension and high quality components.
For those wanting to complete the challenge as quickly as possible, a road bike will be the bike of choice. Lightweight carbon fibre and Aluminium road bikes provide maximum efficiency and are undoubtedly the king of the hill when it comes to putting the miles down.
Giant Road Bikes feature a super-lightweight composite which makes them ideally suited to travelling long distances at speed, and the Giant Propel Road Bike is the ideal choice, and excellent aerodynamic properties means windy sections are tackled with ease.
Cyclocross Bikes, also known as Gravel Bikes are the ultimate all rounders - making them ideal for a yomp across the country. Boasting a similar design to a road bike, these bikes have harder wearing and tyres suited not only to road surfaces, but also light off road surfaces such as gravel. These are some of the most durable bikes you can buy, and many have ample space for different types of luggage, tackling everything the coast to coast can throw at them.
The Giant ToughRoad SLR2 offers excellent value for money, as well as capability.