This route is similar to the Wicklow 200 and is designed for experienced cyclists who are fully competent on technical descents and have excellent overall bike skills.
The 200km route follows a figure-of-eight pattern as you can see in the route map. There are nine categorised climbs which are described below. The route summary is Manorhamilton - Kilcoosey Climb - Moreagh Descent - Lurganboy - Kinlough - Glenaniff Climb - Barr Road Climb (S-N) - Garrison - Glenasheevar Climb - Kiltyclogher (Food Stop) - Killea Climb - Glenboy - Killargue - nr Ballintogher - Geevagh (Food Stop) - Geevagh Climb - Arigna - Tarmon Windmills Climb - Drumkeerin (Food Stop) - Dromahair - Newtownmanor Climb - Moreagh Descent - Manorhamilton. Total elevation gain is 2,700m.
Glenaniff Climb 2.9km 229m 7.8%
This is the big one. Once you are over Glenaniff you know you have cracked it. The start and end are moderate but in the middle section there are 4 switchbacks as the gradient reaches up over 20% on the corners. Focus on the mobile phone mast you see as you start the climb - once you have reached the mast the worst is over.
Barr Climb (S-N) 3.1km 129m 3.6%
The words “The Barr Climb” usually strike fear into local cyclists, but here we are tackling the easier southern side. We are already at altitude so despite two or three steep bits this is fairly easy. Enjoy panoramic views of Lough Melvin as you crest the summit and take care on the tricky descent, which has a few sharp turns, the possibility of light gravel and a sudden exit on to the lakeside road.
Kilty Braes & Killea 8.8km 317m 2.9%
After leaving Kilty there are two short steep sections on the main road. After the right turn you are on a very minor road called Killea. This is one of the climbs that is perhaps more difficult than it looks. Take care on the steep descent through Ballyboy and the exit onto the N16.
Geevagh Climb 6.4km 296m 4.6%
After Glenboy, there is a long flat section about 30km in length with no significant hills bringing you to the food stop at Geevagh. Almost as soon as you get back on your bike you are on Geevagh climb. This is long and steady with a large elevation gain but is relatively easy with no steep parts.
Tarmon Windmills 5.3km 219m 4%
This climb is another surprise package, with several steep ramps hidden in the average gradient of 4%. After the steepest section there are several places where you imagine the climb will soon be over, only to turn the corner and see more steady uphill. Take care on the steep descent.
Newtownmanor Climb 7.4km 191m 2.6%
The final climb of the day also has a few surprises. On leaving Dromahair you turn right and climb up to the road that passes Newtownmanor church. Just here the road kicks up over 10% for a short time and continues to present tricky ramps all the way to the summit of Moreagh. From here you can enjoy the sharp descent to Shanvas and on to the finish where a hot meal awaits you.