3 Peaks Challenge by Luba K

BY IN Exercise Institute News On April 7, 2014

3 Peaks Challenge – Course Profile: 235 km, 3 Epic Climbs






If I had to describe my 3 Peaks 2014 experience in few words I would choose: “over-ambitious”, “painful” and “rewarding”.

For my first 3 Peaks challenge, it took most of the descent for my pre-ride nerves to disappear but by the time I reached Bogong and waved to Alex my son as I rode past, I was ready to go for the first peak: Tawonga Gap. Once I’d found a nice rhythm, the climb itself was quite pleasant. Before I knew it, I was at the top with 35 min mark. This half an hour of climbing was one of the best moments of the day – my legs were feeling fresh, weather was great and I was feeling good. At this stage, I thought that my goal to finish the course in 11 hrs is quite achievable.

Peak 1: Tawonga Gap

The climb up Hotham wasn’t as bad as I thought at the beginning and I as worked through the first few km, I was feeling strong and managed to pass few riders as I went. And then I got hungry. My energy levels dropping right off. This was a frustrating feeling, especially as I’d been eating throughout the ride. I was in need of some real food and that energy bars just weren’t going to cut it. The false-flat couldn’t come quick enough, the ramps seemed to last forever and at every blind corner I was sure the climb was about to end, anyhow, I’ve managed to climb Hotham in about 2 and a half hour.


Peak 2: Mt Hotham

Lined up at Dinner Plain for lunch I was feeling tied but satisfied – two peaks down, one to go.

Falls Creek – for those first 9km, any thoughts of finishing the ride in 11 hours were swept aside. Instead it simply became a matter of survival — keep turning the cranks; keep moving toward the finish line. Turning every corner and seeing the road continually rise was a nightmare…I thought about walking a few times, but managed to keep turning the pedals over. . I was no longer concerned by my time and was just focused on getting across the line. My feet were on fire, I was tired and sore, I was feeling hungry but sick of sweet foods/gels/bars after a long day on the bike and I couldn’t seem to get enough air in my lungs just to power the next pedal stroke.

Peak 3: Falls Creek

Crossing the finish line on at the end was one of the best feelings I’ve ever had. It was a day of so many little victories and the culmination of so much hard work …

I’d like to say thank you to the people who helped me achieve my goal of completing 3 Peaks Challenge this year: Sam Davis – training program design and real source of inspiration over the past four months, Mellissa Robinson and Andrew Patterson –  for many training sessions which weren’t always fun but they were always valuable.

Luba K


6 years ago / 2 Comments







  • Mark Hedges


    Luba, congratulations on achieving a mammoth goal, on what is such a massive ride, and never giving up. It's very inspiring to read how you felt like getting off, your feet were on fire, but you carried on and finished. Well done and Big Kudos!! From Dana's husband.

  • Mike


    I've done this ride three times. I've finished three times. I've also done the Pyrenees (Tourmalet, Hautecam, Pyresorde, Aspin, Super-Bag....) Hotham is a loooooong climb. Worse than Tourmalet. And the back of Falls? Steeper than any of the Pyrenees climbs. DO IT!!!

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