The Nevis Gutbuster – an event that truly lives up to its name. A 75km endurance ride through Nevis Road from Garston to Bannockburn that will truly test your limits.
This event includes two ‘gutbusting’ climbs – 1100m and 1300m. There are also multiple fords to cross, historic sights and stunning landscapes to see on your way. If this all sounds too challenging for yourself, get a team together and tackle the climbs together in a relay.
Participants start at the Garston Township, 315m above sea level, and ride 1.5km on State Highway 6 before turning off onto the metalled Nevis Road. A further 2km of uphill is just an introduction to the gutbusting climb to the 1100m summit, past an historic ski hut, and overlooking the Nokomai River. Riders climb some 800m in 12km, a grade of 1:14.
Starting a long, gradual downhill and following a good 4WD track, riders cross about 25 fords, passing Drummond and Commissioner Creeks where past and present gold mining operations provide interest to the spectacular landscape.
Past the Ben Nevis Station and sheepyards (your only comfort station on the trip!), riders reach the Nevis Crossing Bridge, some 52km from the start and at 660m above sea level. From the bridge, riders face another gutbusting ride up to Duffers Saddle at 1300m (gradient 1:12), then another 8km steep downhill on a good metalled surface, to the Nevis turn-off. The sealed road to Bannockburn is an easy 5km to the finish line at the Bannockburn Domaine at 252m above sea level.
The weather in the Nevis Valley can change very quickly so it’s advised that all riders observe the instructions of the support convoy staff.
Advice from previous riders of the gutbuster is to stock up with plenty of water and food and to soak up the beautiful views.
This year’s event is on Saturday 28th November.
The below video shows the experience of a rider from the 2017 Nevis Gutbuster.