A NEW record has been set by an aspiring paramedic and a teacher following their epic challenge in the heart of the Lakes.

Paramedic in training Josh Jardine, of Kendal, and teacher Pete Rigby, of Ambleside, who are both experienced runners and climbers, smashed The Classic Rock challenge in under 24 hours.

The gruelling course, inspired by Ken Wilson’s Classic Rock book, consists of climbing 15 brutal Lakeland rock routes. This includes Scafell, Tophet Wall, Needle Ridge and Gillercombe Buttress, while carrying your own gear and running in between each climb.

In total, this adds up to around 40 miles of running with more than 4,000 metres of ascent.

The pair, who both run for Helm Hill, set off into the dark at 3 am from Goat’s Water, located between Dow Crag and The Old Man of Coniston, on Saturday, September 22.

“The highlight for me was actually down-climbing Gillercombe Buttress,” said Mr Rigby.

“We decided not to use the rope until the last 100ft or so.

“I don’t normally enjoy down-climbing even roped up so I was a little nervous looking down the 600ft drop, however when I started down all the fear left my body and I enjoyed every second of it.

“Oh and another highlight was the bottle of ale on top of the last route.”

Toasting to their success with a fine bottle of ale the Helm Hill runners completed the challenge in 18 hours and 59 seconds, the fastest time known yet.

In 2013, Kendal man Nick Wharton and friend Brian Davidson were the first to attempt the challenge by running in between each climb and they completed it in 19 hours and 38 minutes.

The idea was originally derived by Mike Van Gulik, Dave Willis and Tim Gould, in 1993, but they used a vehicle for some of the challenge.

The quickest record for a solo and unsupported mission is held by Chris Fisher, of Eskdale, who did it in April this year in 15 hours and 25.

“We had hoped to complete the challenge earlier this summer during longer daylight days but due to the unsettled weather and work commitments we never had a suitable day,” said Mr Jardine.

“Luckily we had a lovely spell of dry weather and I don’t think it could have worked out much better, apart from it being rather windy and breezy on Great Gable, which made the climb up the iconic Napes needle a real balancing act.

“Overall it was a great Lakeland adventure, climbing and running over the fells.

“My personal highlight was climbing on Gimmer Crag during sunrise, not that we had much time to take in the views though.”