Honestly, gearing goes to pot on a hill like that. It's so steep that you pull a wheelie unless your right over the front of the bike - and then the road better not be wet or loose or the back wheel will slip. I rode 36 x 32 and it didn't seem to mean anything when on a hill like that - it's just sweat and suffering.
Edit: Also nearby is this short hill - 45 - 50% according to the locals - I rode up it and it really is the limit on what you can keep the bike upright on...
I think they're measuring it differently than many of us.CarpetFibre wrote:There are plenty of 25 - 33% hills here in the UK. Here's an example I rode up recently...
ridewithgps.com calculates Roncombe Hill at a 9% max.
At 1-2% you’ll barely notice it, like riding into a bit of a head wind
3-4 % most people will do this quite easily. It rates as hill for a non-rider but to a rider it is a mere bump
5-7% will start to bother non-riders, riders will start to find it interesting
8-9% non-riders will start to look for other ways around
10-15% is going to hurt a non-rider and they may give in, Riders will be challenged by this
15% or greater and you’re in the “praying to your deity of choice” territory. This is going to be tough. Non riders simply will not have enough strength to push themselves up this sort of a climb, Good riders will be challenged by this
I've ridden up the 12% max gradient on Mt Ventoux (I floated up it in 39 x 28) - I'd definitely trust their measurement there and so that's what I'm comparing to. I agree the signs are usually way off the actual gradient on these roads, but seriously 1 in 3 is about right for that Roncombe hill. It is just an absolute wall in front of you. I'm a good hill climber, very light and small and I was right on my limit with 36 x 32. Looking at photos or Google Street View just doesn't give it justice. Descending it you have to lean right back and you feel like you'll go over the handlebars.
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