We didn’t choose the shortest route nor the quickest from Mt. Hermon in the North to Eilat, the southernmost point in Israel, but we did choose the route that will take you through the historical places and landscapes that make our country so beautiful and special.
It will be a long ride from Mt. Hermon, the highest mountain in Israel to Eilat riding through the Golan Hights, Sea of Galilee, Galilee mountains, the evergreen Mt. Carmel, Coastal Plain leading to Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, the Negev and Arava deserts, and finally the Eilat mountains, ending at the shores of the Red Sea.
With total of 1,461km and elevation gain of over 20,000m it is not going to be an easy ride. The route passes along gravel roads, single tracks and ancient roman roads. This route is like no other; rough, painful and challenging but also rewarding and FUN.
In planning the route we tried to cover all the different landscapes and panoramas of Israel. Riding the Holy Land Challenge is a great way to connect to this beautiful country.
By the time you reach Eilat…you will have experienced the myriad sights, sounds, smells, tastes and vision of this incredibly historic and ultramodern country – Israel.
Starting with 2016, the HLC challenge will be available in two options;
1. HLC1400 – Full length ending in Eilat
2. HLC700 – Half length ending in Jerusalem
The self-supported spirit is the key and fundamental code the HLC strives to root as part of its DNA. It is this code among riders that will make this event special in the future along with the magical route.
We feel we want to stress the message that even though the HLC is a bikepacking race, the racing element of it is the theme that keeps the rider pushing him/her self to the limit.
The most important element of the event is the JOURNEY – the epic experience one will go through while riding the HLC. The journey starts by meeting the underlined below code of conduct;
1. Riding the entire route; no shortcuts or variation of the route
2. Self supported; no angel intervention, family or bystanders
3. Trying to keep external intervention to a minimum; minimum facebook or other social media
4. Demonstrate brotherhood to fellow riders in need; remember its not only about the race
5. Respect Nature and Parks Authority rules; don’t ride at night where it’s prohibited
The HLC team does not want to monitor or police the codes but will do so when necessary to maintain the spirit of the event.
There is nothing to win or lose in this event just personal experience and the sense of achievement from completing such a challenging ride. Take it as a break from day to day life, go out to the wilderness and experience the feeling of being free from it all.
Ride in your style, enjoy and embrace every simple moment and leave all behind. To keep the event a truly bikepacking experience, the HLC requires each rider to bivy at least 50% of the nights in the wild and out of urban and civilized areas.
In order to keep the event in a “racing” spirit and not “sightseeing” touring like style; beginning with HLC 2015 a cut-off period of 11 days will be implemented. All riders wishing to become “finishers” of the HLC must do so within 11 days after which the trackleaders HLC tracking system will go offline.