We’ve all heard of the Three Peaks Challenge: climb the highest peak in Wales, England, and Scotland…all within 24 hours.
That’s quite a challenge. Not just for climbing the big hills, but the sheer distance you have to travel to get to each one of the peaks.
The hill-climbing effort aside, the national 3 Peak Challenge is out of reach of just about every family. But what if there was another way?
Do it at home!
What about a local 3 peaks challenge?
Sure, in some places around the UK, that might be more of a challenge than others. However, it’s a goal you could set your family, and give it a go.
‘Local‘ could your region, your county, or perhaps just your town.
Set your family a challenge!
We’ve been working hard to try and find local 3 peaks hiking challenges for most of the country to make it easier for you to get your family onto this challenge.
Making Our 3 Peaks Challenge
We live in Shropshire. It doesn’t have the highest hills in the country, but it’s definitely not the flattest of counties either.
Our three peaks are:
– Stiperstones Manstone Rock – 536m
– Brown Clee – 540m
– Titterstone Clee Hill – 533m
Our Challenge became a Challenge
Before commencing our challenge, we researched the three peaks walking routes in Shropshire checking distances, car parking facilities, etc., to maximise our time efficiency and complete the challenge in a day.
The weather forecast was for very chilly conditions, so we layered up appropriately. With bags packed, we headed off with much excitement on our adventure.
Our first peak was going to be Manstone Rock at 536m on the Stiperstones ridge.
Now we did expect that there might be a dusting of snow on the hills, but as we approached the hills and reached the car park we were in for a bit of a shock! There was more than a dusting of snow; the landscape was covered in snow, and it was bitter cold!
We bundled up and started our ascent up Manstone Rock.
The route is very straightforward, but the terrain a little uneven at the top, which was made harder by the wintry conditions.
The novelty of the snow kept the walk exciting, and everyone enthused. As we reached the summit, it started snowing!
The crop of rocks with the trig pillar on was too dangerous to climb given the weather, so we settled for the obligatory selfie as close to it as we could.
No hanging around at the top it was straight back down the hill to the car for a warm drink and cake!
Titterstone Clee Hill
The next peak Titterstone Clee, a prominent hill rising 533m at the summit, was about a half-hour drive away.
This walk was one we had not been to before as a family, so the anticipation of a new hike was exciting!
The approach to Titterstone Clee is along a narrow road. As we approached the weather was deteriorating and we started to wonder what on earth we had let ourselves in for.
The odd snowman and families sledging brought us down to reality. This was not going to be an easy walk!
It was hard to find the car park with snow covering all the eye could see.
Sitting in the car, still a little shocked, we took in the impressive view of whiteness. It was like the arctic!
Hard to believe a few miles down the road not a sign of a blizzard or snow.
Back on with the coats, gloves and hats, as we stepped outside into the blizzard. Quick photos of the whiteout before beginning our ascent of Titterstone Clee.
It was at this point that I did question whether we should proceed with the challenge, but as we knew from the maps, it was only a short walk to the summit, so we continued our trudge in the snow.
As the climb levelled off, we could make out the gloomy radar station and knew that we weren’t far from the trig point.
It was a relief to find the frosty trig point, which looked rather beautiful covered in frost.
Again a quick photo then straight back down the hill, far too cold and windy to hang around!
The walk was short, but the harsh conditions made it seem longer. Our tracks in the snow had already been covered up by fresh snowfall as we started the descent.
The novelty of the snow was now wearing off, and Tom was starting to get cold. Luckily I had packed a poncho in my bag, so we popped this on Tom to warm him up. He then thought he was Batman flying down the hill! Back at the car we warmed up and onto our final peak.
Brown Clee Hill
After about a 15-minute drive we arrived at our last peak Brown Clee Hill, which is the highest peak ( 540m above sea level) in Shropshire.
Although the weather was still bad the route up this peak was more sheltered by woodland and was a welcome relief from the harsh elements.
The scenery was like a winter wonderland, a picture you may see on a Christmas card so lovely and magical.
This was the longest of the routes through woodland and along muddy tracks, with a gentle incline to reach the summit.
At one point it did feel like we were never going to reach the summit, the coldness and tiredness were beginning to take its toll the kids.
On seeing the topography ( which has replaced the trig point ), we all ran to it in jubilation and relief! We had done it!
It was too windy to stand up, so we used the topography as a shelter for our photos.
On top of this summit, there is a microwave relay station which does mar the view, but as we had no view, it wasn’t a problem.
We were so glad we had layered up for our challenge. Our cores were warm but face and hands cold.
Amy’s hair had actually frozen, much to her amusement. I remember thinking what a lovely walk this would be on a spring or summers day, but perhaps, not as memorable as this turned out to be. Back at the car, we threw our gear in the car for the last time it was time to go home.
It had taken all day to complete the challenge. We were all feeling a bit weary, but full of adrenaline eager to share the adventure with the rest of the family.
Our three peaks challenge is a day we won’t forget; fabulous lifetime memories were made.
Although there was a few moans and groans along the way from the kids, we were very proud of them battling on against the elements. The weather was certainly character-building. The achievement of completing the challenge made us feel on top of the world!
So it’s over to you now to try to your own three peak challenge. Setting yourself a challenge can be all the inspiration you need to get the family outside.Find your local 3 peak challenge
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