Category Archives: Tribe News

Jonny of Bedgebury mountain bikes Les Arcs!

Les Arcs Blog
As part of Go Apes adventure fund we assisted Johnny of Bedgebury Go Ape in mountain biking Les Arcs, he has wrote a few words and gathered lots of photos of his trip for us:

“On 8th July 2017 Go Ape kindly paid for my flights to go Mountain Biking in the Les Arc in the French Alps.

We stayed in fully catered mountain bike/ski chalet for one week and had the most incredible time.

The views alone, every day, were outstanding. With only a few big crashes we managed to cover the whole resort as well as going across the valley to the sister resort of La Plagne for a day.

Averaging around 70km downhill riding a day we clearly exhausted and there was nothing better than returning to the chalet (via the pub) to a three course meal and chalet wine!”

Dalby Site Manager Nick Mallet Does ‘Ard Rock’

Ard Rock Featured
Recently Go Ape Dalby Site Manager Nick Dalby took on the ‘Ard Rock’ mountain biking endurance race as part of the Go Ape Adventure Fund.

Each year Go Ape set aside a fund for our Tribe to take on adventurous activities outside of work, here is Nick’s in his own words …

“So on a sunny day in September 2016 and a moment of insanity I agreed with a couple of pals to be part of a team to enter the Ard Rock and the Ard Moors MTB endure races. In retrospect having never competed in any type of MTB event before it might have been prudent to check out what was involved before registering….but got to ‘live life adventurously’ right?!?

GoApe even helped me to take part in my adventure by footing the bill for my enrolments.
The event got closer and closer and the nerves increased. So the Thursday arrived and car packed with tent, bike, food and dog and off I went to work. 7.30 arrived and all customers and staff off the course so time to set off on my adventure. Arrived at the beautiful little village of Fremington in the stunning Yorkshire Dales nestled in a valley with what seemed to be very steep inclines either side.

Tent up and dog settles in what can only be described as a temporary bikers village that had sprung up in a few fields. Lots of very professional looking folk that didn’t help with the nerves.

Time for an early night before the practice day on Friday. Managed to get to have a sedate ride of section 6 (last section) and seemed steep, challenging and fun so I felt a bit better about the start on Saturday at 10.30..Bit of food and natter with team mates and fellow competitors then bed. Disturbed sleep thanks to dog in small tent with me that wanted to share the sleeping bag.

D-Day had arrived so kit up, final check of bike and away we go, myself, Steve who works as an instructor at my site and a pal Jane who I ride with sometimes. Nervously sat at start line with another 20 for that time slot and off we go…so the climbing began all the way to start of section 1…..what have I signed up for??? I start to hear rumours of an air lift for a nasty crash and the nerves are back.

No turning back now….here we go.

Wow that was the most thrilling section of mountain biking I’ve done, rocks, tight turns, mud, roots and did I mention how steep it was!! But with the sound of spectator cow bells still ringing in my ears I make it to the bottom all in one piece and I stayed on my bike!! Buzzing!
Then more climbing to next section…….. 4 and half hours later and 4000 metres worth of climbing, wind, rain and adrenaline I arrive at the top of section 6 for the final descent. Feeling it now but loving it.

Jane heads off with me not far behind, all going well and I’m gaining on her when quick as a flash she crashes in a heap in front of me. So stopped next to her and helped her out of the way of the track. She’s not in a good way having landed on her shoulder. After helping her out and checking she was ok and being told to carry on I jump back on bike and hurtle down the last few minutes of my Ard Rock adventure.

All done and I can safely say it was ‘Amazing’….once adrenaline has subsided and Steve arrives at the finish my thoughts turn to my fallen team mate who soon after appears with her arm in a sling, shaken but walking down and looking forward to her visit to A+E.
It was truly an amazing weekend and I met some brilliant people. Challenged myself and am completely hooked….roll on Ard Moors is September.”

Well done Nick from all the Go Ape Tribe!

Ard Rock 3

Graham and Sharon take on the Via Francigena

graham and sharon via francigena

Leeds Castle site manager, Graham celebrated his 10th anniversary at Go Ape by taking on his biggest adventure to date – walking the Via Francigena with his wife Sharon.


What is the Via Francigena?

The Via Francigena is the name of an ancient route running from France to Rome. It is believed to have been a religious pilgrimage, and for those starting it from the UK – it all begins in the city of Canterbury.

via francigena map

How long will it take?

The journey is a total of 1200 miles and covers parts of France, Italy and Switzerland. The couple set off on the 23rd June, the pilgrimage is likely to take around 4 months. It will require around 8-10 hours of walking per day and camping out under the stars (and likely, rain) at night.


Tracking their progress

The first part of the couple’s journey started from Canterbury, where the pilgrimage was said to have begun, and onward to Dover. They covered 22 miles in one day then caught the ferry from Dover to Calais.

So far, the couple have visited Calais, Guines, Reims and Lausanne to name just a few beautiful European cities. To paraphrase Ringo Starr – “they’ve got blistered on their toes!”

gaz and shaz adventure

Follow their adventure

If you would like to keep up to date with the pilgrimage of Graham and Sharon from Canterbury to Rome, you can follow each footstep via their blog

Ultra Tour Of The Peaks

Rob Blog Header
This week we have a guest post from one of our instructors at Buxton – Rob. 
He recently completed the Ultra Tour Of The Peaks and here is his account:

“In April 2016, I completed my first road marathon in Manchester, which you may have read about in an earlier blog post. Therefore, in 2017 I needed a new challenge; something bigger and better. I found a few races organised by Dig Deep Events that caught my eye and decided to undertake the 60-mile Ultra Tour of the Peak District. It would have been more sensible to start with the 30-mile race, however I wanted the challenge of 60 miles and a 3000m ascent. With just a few months to train, I ordered a map of the route and began work. The race was booked for Saturday 19th August.

Rob Buxton 1

The months flew by but I had managed to run most the race route. I’d experienced how demanding the hills would be and figured out what foods would get me up them. It turns out, ham and tomato thins are incredible!

It was the day before the race and I didn’t know how I felt about it, nervous, excited or just plain terrified. I spent the day registering for the race, packing all the food that I needed and making sure I knew the route and where all my checkpoints were.

It was here. It was race day; my alarm went off at 4:15am and I was up and on my way. The start and finish was at Whirlow Farm just outside of Hathersage. I arrived and got myself ready and dropped off bags that I wanted shipping to different aid stations and got ready for the race briefing which started at 5:45. A few quick safety notices and we were on our way!

At the start the miles seemed to fly by, we climbed onto Burbage Edge and I reached the first checkpoint at 6 miles. The route then climbed up on to the top of Stanage Edge which is when the weather took a turn for the worst. The rain started and the fog started to drop and for the rest of the race this barely changed. Throughout the day we witnessed every type of weather you can imagine: sleet, hail and high winds. This made for a tough race.

The half way point, 30 miles, was located at Yorkshire Bridge near Ladybower reservoir. I made it here without much issue and I was feeling good. The next fifteen miles however would soon change that feeling. After several more gruelling hills and found myself at Hathersage feeling absolutely broken. I can’t put this feeling onto paper. We’ve all heard the phrase hitting the wall in running, however this was more continuously running into the wall and running away from it and then back into it.

I battled against my mind on whether to drop out and call it a day. I carried on and left the checkpoint very shortly after knowing the sooner I got going again the sooner I would be finished. The section from Hathersage to the finish line, stupidly, was the only section I hadn’t already ran. It wasn’t long into this section that I got lost for the first time. I had gone off route by about a mile or two. The light had dropped so I had my head torch on and by this point I just wanted to be finished. I re-gained my bearings and finally made it to checkpoint 20 which was the penultimate checkpoint. From here all I had to do was follow a straightforward route back to Whirlow Farm. This straightforward route however just seemed to keep on going.

Rob Buxton 2

I could hear noise and finally caught a glimpse of the finish line. I had one final corner and about 50metres left. It took everything I had to get across that line. I was greeted by a marshall who gave me my official finishers medal and a few friends and family helping me stagger to a chair. That was it, I was officially an Ultra marathon runner.

The results came out a few days after the event and I got my official time of 16 hours and 8 minutes. I was over the moon. Out of 65 people that started I came in 30th Position. For my first ever Ultra Marathon, I was thrilled. Now that a bit of time has passed and my legs have started working again, I’ve decided that it certainly will NOT be my last ultra-marathon and I’m already on the lookout for my next challenge.”

Rob Buxton 3

Well done Rob an amazing feat, we salute you!
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