The climb to Chequers

Distance 1.0 miles

Max Gradient Around 15 – 18% for a couple of short sections

Where do you find it?

This climb starts you off on one of the best sections of cycling road in the land. To find it you need to ride down through the picturesque village of Osmotherley heading towards the village of Thimbleby. As you exit the village take the left hand turn signposted for Hawnby. To start with the road drops downwards, first to the left, then to the right before going up – well it is a climb so what did you expect!

Description

Although a country road the surface is good throughout. The first section of the climb is quite steep but as you’ve come downhill you can carry a lot of speed into it which lessens the impact. Be careful not to overdo it though as this climb goes on for quite a distance. After the steep bottom section the road curves to the left and the gradient eases before kicking up again to about 15% or so. For the first half of the climb it could perhaps be best described as a bit lumpy but it is possible to find a rhythm and for the second half the gradient is quite even at about 4-5%. Today the wind was at our backs so the climb felt relatively easy but if it is coming across the moor in an easterly direction this last section is twice as hard as there’s no cover. The road gradually curves towards the right before cresting the moor just before Chequers.

If you carry on towards Hawnby you will be rewarded with a beautiful and challenging stretch of the North Yorkshire Moors taking in hair raising descents, short steep ascents and some stunning scenery. If you decide to turn around and head back down shame on you but at least you’ll be rewarded with a cracking descent where speeds of 40 mph can be reached, if you decide to go any faster than this good luck and remember the twisty bit at the bottom.

Photos

The steep bottom section

The steep bottom section

The beautiful view from the top of the climb – it’s about 800 ft up at this point. The line of the ascent can be made out along the line of trees and the wall above the field.

The beautiful view from the top of the climb – it’s about 800 ft up at this point. The line of the ascent can be made out along the line of trees and the wall above the field.

Our Ratings and Comments:

  • Paul 4
  • Mick 5
  • Geoff 4
  • Steve 5
  • John 5

More of a steady climb with a few lumps rather than a lung buster or a leg breaker. It is best to start off steady and build if you feel good rather than go hard straight away. All of us felt that it was quite comfortable today but I’ve had some mixed experiences having done it several times over the years and the weather and wind direction can play a big part.

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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