A Monstrous Challenge

CSgt Wayne Parry tackles the Breamish Behemoth

Colour Sergeant Wayne Parry used to be CQMS of Number Two Company before he was posted to Brecon. Wanting to play his part in WG100 and on behalf of Number Two Company, (and obviously not tempted by the beautiful Brecon Beacons on his doorstep) he decided that the challenge he would like to undertake was the Breamish Behemoth, a 40-mile cross country cycling event set in the midst of the stunningly beautiful Cheviot hills in Northumbria.

(A behemoth, by the way, is an animal of monstrous size, as mentioned in the Book of Job).

The Breamish Valley

Starting from Ingram village hall, a hamlet set on the banks of the river Breamish, the competitors set off across difficult terrain and in dismal weather conditions.

Although the challenge begins with some gentle climbs and fast descents, it very soon became a struggle with some grueling climbs, where the worry was whether your legs would give out before losing traction, particularly riding off-piste through rough grass and over uneven terrain. Although uphill was extremely tough, the steep descents were just as tricky and considerably more dangerous given that it is possible to reach a speed of 40mph. Not a place to lose your balance.

Half way round the loop of the course, the riders had a break at the Barrowburn café for much needed sustenance and to admire the view, which during their ride was not much more than a blur.

Twenty miles in

The last few miles called for serious grit and determination, but Wayne completed the challenge in very respectable 8.5 hours, having completed all the stages before the cut off time.  He said at the end that it was the hardest challenge he had ever undertaken, but worth the effort for the honour of the Battalion. He is  planning to take part in the Cross Mountain event on the 15th November 2015 in Llandovery.

The finishing line