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What is the 3 peaks challenge?

Do you want to challenge yourself this summer, get fit and see more of the outdoors? Then the 3 Peaks Challenge is for you, but what is it, how can you take part, and where can you get involved?

What is the 3 Peaks Challenge?

The 3 Peaks Challenges run across the UK and there are currently 3 main routes you can take – a National, Welsh and Yorkshire challenge. The ‘challenge’ element of the treks is to pick a route, climb the 3 mountain ranges on the course and complete them all in a set timescale – usually 12 or 24 hours. Many groups or individuals do them for charities and good causes, but it’s just as valuable as a fitness drive, and for people’s own personal sense of achievement.

How you can take part

You can take part in the Challenge in two ways — as a self-organised group, or a professionally organised event. Self-organised events are often the cheapest way to take part, while many groups will benefit from the assistance provided by professional mountain guides as this obviously adds an extra element of safety and is a helpful confidence booster.

The 3 different routes


The national route covers Snowdon, Scafell Pike and Ben Nevis and involves climbing the three highest peaks in England, Wales and Scotland, often within 24 hours.


The Welsh Three Peaks Challenge, lesser known than the National or Yorkshire Challenges, takes in the three peaks of Wales: Snowdon (Yr Wyddfa) in the North, Cadair Idris in mid-Wales, and Pen y Fan in the South. 


The Yorkshire challenge takes part across Pen-y-ghent, Whernside and Ingleborough, usually in this order, and in under 12 hours. These peaks form part of the Pennine range, and encircle the head of the valley of the River Ribble, in the Yorkshire Dales National Park.

If you want to get involved, read more on the official 3 Peaks Challenge website, or take a peek our 3 peaks listings on do it crowd and join a group that’s already set up and ready to go? Or why not explore our British Mountaineering Council spotlight blog to see how to get started in hillwalking and climbing?


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