Climbs by category

Always hotly debated! Based on numerous ascents of most climbs on the list and taking into account not just the steepness and length of the climb but how challenging the approach can be and how much the weather can play a part as some climbs are more exposed to the weather than others. This is what I’ve come up with, hardest first and then in descending order. For a bit of fun I’ve attempted categorising them Grand Tour style!

Hors Category

Climb Out of 10 Map
 1. Rosedale Chimney 10  map
 2. Caper Hill 9  map
 3. Blakey Bank 9  map
 4. Carlton Bank 8/9  map
 5. Boltby Bank 8/9  map

1st Category

Climb Out of 10 Map
 6. Street 8  map
 7. Westerdale to Rosedale Head 8  map
 8. Heygate Bank 7  map
 9. Black Brow 7  map
10. Delves 7  map
11. Boulby 7  map
12. Skinningrove 7  map
13. Scarth Nick 7  map
14. Danby Beacon 7  map
15. New Way 7  map

2nd Category

Climb Out of 10 Map
16. Key Green 6/7  map
17. Kildale to Commondale 6/7  map
18. Botton Bank 6  map
19. Westerdale (Artist’s Cottage) 6  map
20. Sand Hill 6  map
21. Egton Bridge to Egton 6  map
22. Lythe Bank 6  map
23. Murton Bank 6  map
24. Rosedale (Bell End Farm) 6  map
25. Blue Bank 6  map
26. Baysdale 6  map
27. Clay Bank from Westwood Farm 6  map
28. Grosmont to Egton 6  map
 29. Kildale to Gribdale 6  map

3rd Category

Climb Out of 10 Map
30. Castleton to Rosedale Head 5/6 map
31. Roxby 5 map
32. Wilton Bank 5 map
33. Rievaulx Bank 5 map
34. Newgate Bank 5 map
35. Clay Bank 5 map
36. Cow Wath Bank 5 map
37. Lealholm 5 map
38. Potash Bank 5 map
39. Castleton 4 map
40. Chequers 4 map
41. Birk Brow 4 map
42. Limber Hill 4 map
43. Saltburn Bank 4 map
44. Hob Hole 4 map

4th Category

Climb Out of 10 Map
45. Green Bank (Skelton) 4 map
46. Ladhill Beck Bank 4 map
47. Gribdale 3/4 map
48. Yearby Bank 3 map
49. East Barnby 3 map
50. Loftus Bank 3 map
51. Ormesby Bank 2 map
52. Carlin How Bank 2 map

15 replies on “Climbs by category”

No way rosdale chimney is a 10 paul. It’s a walk in the park compared to hardknotts ! 😉 my rating system is as follows

8/10. would like to dismount but not on yr life!
9/10. seriously considering dismounting but will go unconscious first!
10/10. strong possibility I may have to dismount! SRAM 11/32 sprocket required!

We’ve been through this before! It’s a 10 for the North York Moors, Hardknot is harder that’s true, it’s an 11 out of 10, it’s my system i make the rules so i can do what i want. Now you’re probably going to open up that debate about ‘is Caper Hill or Blakey Bank harder than the Chimney?’ The answer to that is depends, Caper is more sustained but ultimately doesn’t have the killer 33% section and Blakey is more gruelling but you do get little breaks here and there, so it depends what you find most painful. I’ll now expect someone to come on and say that the 2% drag out of Great Ayton is harder and should be on the site, stop it now, before you’ve even started!

Isn’t Robin Hood’s Bay within the qualifying area? That’s certainly harder than some on the list.

For my money Boltby is way harder than either Blakey Bank or Carlton Bank. That may be because I’m no stick insect and therefore steep is hard for me. Also I can kill most gradients by weaving (eg the Chimney), but Boltby is narrower than the others which makes weaving less effective. I was closer to failure on Boltby than on any of your other Hors Categorie climbs.

That’s the beauty of it Richard, it’s all down to opinion. I think the reason most of us in the club probably feel that tough though Boltby is it’s not that long and ends just before it get’s really serious. Also not sure weaving is allowed!? Most people in the club now think that the dreaded Caper Hill is the worst, though i maintain if you go straight up the Chimney, with no cheeky weaving, it is still the hardest.

As for Robin Hoods Bay we had to draw lines somewhere and the Whitby to Pickering road is where the line is to the East, Blue Bank being the furthest climb in that direction. There are harder climbs than some of those in the 52 listed but we picked some of the easier ones because they are well known or have a specific character e.g.there are loads of climbs on the moors harder than Ormesby Bank or Gribdale but are not as well loved or trodden. For example there is a climb from Glaisdale that goes up onto Glaisdale High Moor that peaks near the top of Caper Hill, some of us call it the Hill of Truth. It is tough but a bit tedious and featureless and there are many better climbs in that area.

I also did an article on the site about climbs that i maybe could have included, such as Bilsdale Mast.

Glad you’re reading them though Richard and you’re not alone in your dread of Boltby, a few in the club tend to avoid it!


Hi Kev, thanks for the comment. The reason it didn’t make it is that it doesn’t lend itself easily to a route. Saying that i am planning a bit of an odd themed club run ride, probably in the spring. The idea is to ride down the Esk Valley, then through Grosmont, Sleights, Ruswarp and over to Robin Hoods Bay. Then we’ll drop down through the village right down to the sea, then ride all the way out and follow the coast road up Lythe Bank to Runswick, drop down to the village and back out, and well do a similar thing at Staithes before heading up to Boulby, then Skinningrove and will finish with Saltburn Bank. A tough one and i might be banned from leading club runs after it! You’d be more than welcome to join us? I reckon the climb out of Robin Hoods Bay will be the toughest though, will give me an opportunity to rate them.

Botton Bank an absolute brute today (22/8/20) against the wind, speaks one who has conquered Simon Warren’s 100 plus many Alpine and Pyrenean climbs.

I’ve managed to ascend most of the rides on the list on a mountain bike and have enjoyed them all.I would not atemptmost of them on my road bike even with a 34 32gear.The climb out of littlebeck to bluebank in my opinion is thehardest and the only one where I have to get out of the saddle when on my mtb

I would just like to take some time to thank the person who originally put this page together, and all those who contributed. This page is a hugely useful resource and I’m not quite sure I could put into words just how much it has helped me while trying to systematically improve my cycling ability and finally conquer my fear of hills. Being able to plan routes that I’ve already been talked through via this page and on which I know what to expect has really aided me in my training and the fact it is all provided for free is outstanding. Thanks again!

I’m still very much enjoying and using this page.. A perfect guide yo use when putting together a ride together round these parts. I’ve Still got a few to go, some I’ve done many times….. but I will complete the list at some point..
Cheers! Keep up the good work.

I’m still very much enjoying and using this page.. A perfect guide to use when putting together a ride together round these parts. I’ve Still got a few to go, some I’ve done many times….. but I will complete the list at some point..
Cheers! Keep up the good work.

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