Taking to the hills for a big adventure

A FIVE-hour adventure race is to be staged this weekend in the countryside around Bakewell.

The Mountain Hardwear Open 5 takes place on Sunday, March 6, and offers people the chance to explore the area by bike and on foot.

Plenty of people in the area enjoy getting out running and mountain biking on the hills so why not take the opportunity to join in the fun?

The event will be the fourth race held as part of the Mountain Hardwear Open5 Winter series.

It is open to solos and pairs over the age of 18 wanting to take part, from first timers to elite athletes.

The Open5 races are all at different locations in the UK and, within the space of five hours, you have to visit as many points (controls) as you can on the map.

Some can only be collected by mountain bike, others by foot.

Each control is worth varying amounts of points and the one with the most points after 5 hours wins.

If it’s your first race, it is suggested that you pair up with a more experienced racer and give it a go.

But this is perhaps not quite as easy as it sounds because you have to carefully plan your route to ensure you maximise the number of controls you can get to, and be careful not to be late back otherwise you incur penalties on your total.

Local planner and adventure racer Ian Hughes has been working hard on the course, visiting all the paths and trails and talking with local landowners, especially the Chatsworth Estate and the Peak District National Park Authority, to ensure that racers get to visit some of the area’s most beautiful locations.

The event centre is at the Bakewell Agricultural Centre with free parking available by permits issued at registration for the event.

The organisers said: “In advance we would like to thank the Agricultural Centre for hosting the event and the Farmers Feast for providing food for the hungry racers.

“There will be prizes on the day from the event sponsors Mountain Hardwear for the top spots in all categories, so this is a chance not to be missed and well worth getting muddy for.”

Entries are still being accepted, so if you fancy giving it a go and getting involved in five hours of unforgettable adventure, visit the Open Adventure website at www.openadventure.com for more information.