Aberfoyle to host new endurance gravel cycling event and festival

27 March 2023  |  

On Sunday 30 April 2023, Aberfoyle, the beating heart of the popular Gravelfoyle cycling destination in Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park, is set to host Grand Old Dukes, a new gravel riding endurance event for solo riders and relay teams.

Dukes Weekender

Credit: Jered Gruber

Event organisers, Bike Trossachs CIC, the cycling focused community interest group behind Dukes Weekender, one of the most popular gravel riding events in the UK, will also stage a two-day community cycling festival (Saturday 29 & Sunday 30 April 2023) supported by the EventScotland Community Cycling Fund.

From a timed mass start on Sunday morning (30 April) the Grand Old Dukes will see gravel riders tackle a challenging 111-mile route, with 10,000ft of spectacular climbs, from Loch Lubnaig to Loch Arklet, and the most iconic hills and glens in between. The specially designed waymarked and marshalled route will showcase some of the best gravel riding to be had in the UK across the Trossachs’ extensive network of off-road, multi-surface forestry tracks and trails, gravel roads, and paths, all in the most stunningly beautiful countryside.


Credit: Stu Thomson

Thanks to generous support from EventScotland Community Cycling Fund in celebration of the 2023 UCI World Championships in August, Bike Trossachs, in partnership with Adaptive Riders Collective (ARC), Dirt Divas CIC and Trailcoach, will be staging the Gravelfoyle festival of cycling, a range of free cycling events and activities in the family-friendly Grand Old Dukes event village at Dounans Outdoor Centre, Aberfoyle, on Saturday 29 and Sunday 30 April 2023.

The partnership team will offer adaptive e-assist bikes to demo as well as a series of ‘come and try’ gravel rides, guided long distance rides, female led rides and female specific cycle mechanics sessions. The event village will also include a range of stands, kids pump track and cargo bikes to try out.

Event Director Kerry MacPhee, from Bike Trossachs CIC, said: “The growth of Gravelfoyle as a mecca for gravel riders across the globe has been special to watch over the last five years, as has the growth of special long distance gravel challenges. We know there is an appetite for both, so it felt like a no brainer to create our own concept event of climbing 10,000ft over 111 miles. It’s a truly beautiful and at times breath-taking route which should help riders get through the challenging length and elevation on offer and we’re stoked to be bringing this route to the masses.


Credit: Andy McCandlish

Event Director Beth Legg, added: “With something for everyone at the event village at Dounans Outdoor Centre all weekend, our new community focused festival of cycling, running in conjunction with the big ride-out on Sunday is guaranteed to have a very welcoming and family atmosphere.”

Robbie Clyde, Head of EventScotland, said: “EventScotland is delighted to be supporting the family-friendly Grand Old Dukes gravel riding festival, Aberfoyle, through the Community Cycling Fund which is enabling opportunities for more people to enjoy the benefits of cycling through a range of events and activity as we move closer to the inaugural 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships.

“Events play an important role in our communities, enabling us all to connect, enjoy and share memorable experiences - having them in our calendar further strengthens Scotland’s position as the perfect stage for events.”

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