Borderlands Gravel could be one of the gnarliest events of the year

Struggle Borderlands gravel event
(Image credit: Struggle Events)

Looping over the rugged Yorkshire, Borderlands Gravel is a new gravel event taking place on the 3rd of September and promises equal parts challenging climbs and 360 panoramas.

Hosted by Struggle Events who also organize the Struggle Dales and Struggle Moors, two of the hardest road sportives in the UK.

There are two fully off-road route options to choose from, covering either 100km with 1,712m of climbing, or 50km which ascends 950m. Although the routes are relatively short for a gravel event, don't expect an easy day out. The route navigates the around the same area that is famed for the Ard Rock Enduro race and scales some significant peaks including Oxnop Scar, Apedale Head, and Great Pinseat. Before lining up you will need to make sure your fitness is ready and your technical skills are sharpened in the run-up to the event. 

Four riders on a gravel trail

Big climbs and big descents look to be the hallmark of Borderlands Gravel (Image credit: Struggle Events)

Struggle Events Director Matt Mannakee said, “The route is amazing. Stoney shooting tracks guide you over rocky moonscapes and dips you down through abandoned mines. The landscape is worth the hard work, with 360-degree views on top of the moorland.”

If you want to make a weekend of it, you can also enter the Borderlands Road event that will take place on the Saturday. There is the option of a 174km or 100km route, but don't think they will be any easier just because they are on the road, as the longer route will notch up 3,000m of climbing. The routes include some of the hardest climbs in the UK, including Buttertubs Pass, Fleet Moss, and more.

Riders on a gravel climb

Borderlands Gravel maybe new, but the organizers are well known for extremely tough road events (Image credit: Struggle Events)

There will be mechanical support en route courtesy of Scott Bikes and a feed station stocked with Maurten and Veloforte sports nutrition. There are tent and camper pitches available, as well as local bunkhouse options as well.

Entries cost £55 for the gravel ride, or £99 if you want to also do the Saturday road ride. If you need to stay the night, the camping pitches are charged at £20 a night with toilets and showers available.

Riders can enter now at Ridethestruggle.com.

Graham Cottingham
Senior reviews writer, Bike Perfect

Graham is all about riding bikes off-road. Based in Edinburgh he has some of the best mountain biking and gravel riding in the UK right on his doorstep. With almost 20 years of riding experience, he has dabbled in downhill, enduro, and gravel racing. Not afraid of a challenge, Graham has embraced bikepacking over the last few years and likes nothing more than strapping some bags to his bike and covering big miles to explore Scotland's wildernesses. When he isn’t shredding the gnar in the Tweed Valley, sleeping in bushes, or tinkering with bikes, he is writing tech reviews for Bike Perfect.


Rides: Cotic SolarisMax, Stooge MK4, 24 Bicycles Le Toy 3, Surly Steamroller

Height: 177cm

Weight: 71kg