Birk Brow

Distance 1.15 miles

Max Gradient 15 %

Where do you find it?

This is a well known climb which takes you up onto the North York Moors via the A171 ‘Moors Road’. You can reach the foot of it from Guisborough going past Slapewath or by going through Boosbeck then taking the turn off for Margrove Park then turning left when you reach Charltons.


We felt that you really start to notice the increase in gradient just after the Margrove Park turn off near Charltons so this is where we measured the climb from. This long straight drag is quite demoralising as it hardly seems to rise, but it must be steeper than it looks, surely! The steepest bit of the climb is reached just after this as the road takes a steep left and the lungs start to earn their corn, this must be the 15% bit. After this you get a bit of respite with the gradient easing as the road becomes a dual carriage way. Look left here for a wonderful view back towards Slapewath. Then the road curves right and steepens to about 10% or so, if you’re feeling a bit worse for wear you can take the escape route on your left along the Stanghow Ridge Road. Stay positive though and head for the summit where another wonderful view unfolds of the North York Moors and a chuck wagon awaits to reward you with some nice greasy food.


At the bottom
The steepest part.


The easier part towards the top
The easier part

Our Ratings and Comments:

Paul – 4, Dave – 4, John – 5.

We all felt that this was more of a steady climb which, due to its exposed nature, could be a lot tougher depending on the wind direction. Dave felt that its length might make it difficult for someone who’s just started cycling. Great descent which ever way you go down as well although Dave’s idea of not touching the brakes at all if you go back down towards Slapewath is recommended by him and him alone!

Note the ratings are :-

  1. Where’s the slope?
  2. No problem
  3. Big ring
  4. Spinning a gear
  5. It’s a difficult one (a homage to Sean Kelly)
  6. Light up all the boilers!
  7. Handlebar snapper
  8. Licking the front wheel
  9. Dinner plate required
  10. Fetch a nurse!

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