24-26th August | Cromford Derbyshire | Adventure Weekend

Peak Challenge

The Peak Challenge is back. This multi-discipline paddlesports event combines Slalom, Downriver and now Kayak Cross to find an overall river master. If you’re of a certain age (!) you’ll remember the best multi-discipline kayaking series ever run in the UK, The Peak Challenge. We’ve brought it back! The new event is family friendly and this initial event will be on a normally peaceful, meandering section of the River Derwent in Cromford. The main focus of the weekend being inclusive, family fun; so, if you’re an old-timer parent you can race your kids, kids can race other kids, and their parents, and maybe even against World Champions! Open to all crafts, levels* and ages. (*need to be capable of paddling class 1 moving water safely)

The three disciplines will be run over three days, with a combined champion being crowned in each class after the Grand Kayak Cross final on Monday.

There is amazing B&B ensuite bunk room accommodation available just across the river, kindly provided by Manor Adventure at Willersley Castle. The castle will also be an evening hub for the event, with food, nightly entertainment, talks and chat also on site. Get booked in for a fun-filled family weekend on the water. Finish the Summer on a good one!

Dates / Times Provisional:

Sat 24th Slalom

The Slalom will comprise of a pretty standard slalom course featuring a series of upstream and downstream gates to be completed in order, against the clock with penalties added for missing or hitting the gates. You’ll get two runs with your best counting.  We will use your age and choice of boat to define your class and results will be categorised accordingly. Use whatever boat you feel comfortable in, slalom kayak, canoe, plastic boat, SUP or even C2 – it’s up to you.

9am – 11.30am Free practice. Arrange your own safety.

12pm Run 1.

2pm Run 2. 

6pm Food & social event at Willersley Castle. 

Sun 25th Downriver

The Downriver race format will be a time-trial type event where each individual is against the clock. This is a point-to-point sprint from start to finish. The race of truth as they call it! The times for this will be used for seeding the Kayak Cross on Sunday – bring your game face or best smile!

9am – 11.30am Junior Slalom Coaching with members of Team GB

12pm – 2pm Downriver time trial

6pm Food & social event at Willersley Castle.

Mon 26th Kayak Cross

Monday will see the finale. Based on the new exciting Olympic format of Kayak Cross, we’ll seed paddlers from their Downriver results, and they’ll set off in small groups to negotiate a short course featuring gates and obstacles, as well as each other, in a knockout format. All paddlers will need to paddle a plastic boat for this race to ensure safety for all. Pyranha boats will be available for competitors if they only have slalom boats with them.

9am – 11.30am Free practice. Arrange your own safety.

12pm – 3pm Kayak Cross.

Competitors placings from each event will be taken forward and used to crown overall Peak Challenge Champions of the weekend!

4pm Awards ceremony. Cromford Canal Wharf

Entry Fees: Adult £20. Junior (U18 Jan 1st ) £10. All competitors will receive an event T shirt. This is great value , so there is no reduction for only participating in certain elements of the weekend sorry.

Enter and book your food / accommodation here.

Entries: Please enter online in advance to help us plan. Thanks

Registration: Saturday 9am – 11am. Sign in and bib collection at the Cromford Canal Wharf. 

Accommodation: Bed and Breakfast is available at Manor Adventure Willersley Castle for an amazing £30 per person, per night. Ensuite bunk bed rooms of differing sizes . Bring your own pillow, sleeping bag, and towel. No dogs allowed thanks. Family’s will be grouped together. Friends can be grouped, please contact to arrange. Individuals may have to share in bigger rooms if the event is popular. We will advise you if this is necessary.

Food / Social Events: Food & social events including live music and talks will take place on Saturday and Sunday evenings at Willersley Castle price £10 per person, per evening. Please notify us when booking of any special dietary requirements in the comments box at the checkout.

Parking: There is plenty of pay and display parking around the Mills for the event. See map below.

Camping: The closest campsite is Birchwood Farm. Please book here:

Vanning: Some camper van spaces are available in Cromford Mills car park. You must have your own toilet and pay at the appropriate fees at the parking machines.

Site Map: see below. 

Post Code: DE4 3RQ

What 3 Words: sourcing.champions.secretly

The Cromford Peak Challenge and Come and Try Kayaking sessions are run by Paddle Peak. Paddle Peak is a Paddle UK Club CL000123 and registered charity 1194192. 

Any proceeds made from this event will be donated to the Paddle Peak Charity.

For insurance cover: Peak Challenge competitors should be Paddle UK or Paddle UK registered club members. We will take out Paddle UK day membership on your behalf if you are not a member. Please make this clear on your entry. 

Paddlesports are assumed risk water sports that may carry attendant risk. Participants ( parents / guardians ) should be aware of and accept these risks, and be responsible for their own action and involvement.

Safety: During race times on the water safety will be in place in key areas. Paddling parents are welcome to join their children on the water during the competition if you feel this is necessary. Paddlers will be responsible for their own safety during practice times.

Water quality: Sadly, like most UK rivers, the Derwent is not as clean as it should be. Please wash hands after every paddle and seek medical advice if you experience sickness / flu symptoms following the event. 

Support: Cromford Mills. Manor Adventure Willersley Castle. Peak PS. Pyranha. P&H. Ainsworth. Paddle UK. Acclimbatize. Mount Cook

Contact details: t: 01629 732611

Enter and book your food / accommodation here.