Organiser: Jonathan Bliss
Only available to be ridden as a Permanent, Entry fee €5 to be paid to email@example.com
All riders must have a Cycling Ireland Licence, as One-Day Licences are not allowed.
Ride with GPS Map: https://ridewithgps.com/routes/33455652
Start/Finish: SuperValu Monksland / Athlone Springs Hotel (Exit M6 at J13) or any control.
Proof of passage by GPS track and photos or receipts.
Controls: Monksland; Ballintober (55km); Mohill (110km); and Ballymore (171km).
A meander through an area known as the ‘Hidden Heartlands’, it is easily accessible from Dublin and Galway by train or motorway.
The route heads North from Monksland (Nr Athlone) and takes you on a tour of the Midlands waterways. You will be rewarded with a great view of Lough Ree at the top of the first climb. Later crossing the River Suck and Shannon several times and following the Royal Canal for a while along its tow paths. Not a hilly route, although a little lumpy for the first half, then pretty flat to 170km with a few more rolling hills to bring you into Athlone.
The route takes its name from a pretty successful Irish Rock band’s album. You will be passing the castle that featured on the front cover of said album at ~190km. There is an old shabby horsebox now where once the 4 lads stood.
The route is mainly on good but relatively quiet roads, although it does venture onto back roads for a few sections where things can get narrow and twisty particularly after Drumsna and Ballymahon.
There are only basic shops at Ballintober and Ballymore, therefore, other places to eat include: Athleague (30km); Elphin (80km); Termonbarry (134km); Ballymahon (160km)
In Mohill you will be turning right at the cross-roads in the centre of town. If you want something to eat here, instead of turning right, carry straight on for about 500m, where you will see a good sized Centra on the left after the road bears right. If you are a full value rider, on a good day, you might hold out for a cold one and good grub by the Shannon at Keenan’s Hotel, Termonbarry (134km).
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