Page Contributor(s): Helmuth Dekkers, Netherlands; Ard Oostra, Montreux, Switzerland.
Cycling Kitzbuheler Horn, the most popular bike climb in Austria.
Ride 10.1 kilometers gaining 1219 meters at 12.1% average grade.
This well known beast of a climb is perhaps Austria’s most famous climb (although Grobglockner fans would no doubt debate that conclusion). Kitzbuheler Horn is a mere 6.3 miles, with a Fiets Index of 16, and an average grade of 12.25%. There is a ticket and scanning machine at the top for those who wish to race this one. Additionally, there is an annual race up Kitzbuheler Horn in July, should one wish to compete against the clock in a brutal time trial. There is a toll booth a ways up the road, but the climb is free for cyclists.
Buy your ticket here and give it a go!
Blow through this one, cyclists do not pay.
In addition to the unbelievably steep climb (where else do you see this type of warning) . . .
. . . there are magnificent views, a cafe, and a couple scenic view platforms, as well as much cattle activity along and at the top of the climb:
Hairpins (kehres) and KM’s are marked.
The Wall of Fame for the top dogs up this climb.
Continue past the Wall of Fame up the mountain to the finish at the Kitzbüheler Horn Transmitter.
Many cattle graze on the upper slopes.
Plenty of flowers during our summer trip.
The climb goes to and past the Kitzbuhel Ski Resort.
Spectacular views from the top at sunset.
There is a bonus 300’ of climbing at the end:
From Strava, Helmuth Dekkers says: “For Kitzbühelerhorn you only missed 103m with a difference of level of 18 which implies an average gradient of 17.5%. I thought you had missed the part from the Alpenhaus Kitzbüheler Horn where you needed to pass a barrier. But that was fortunately for you not the case. 😊 Then from the Gipfelhaus am Kitzbüheler Horn it's just 100m to the antenna. I added 2 waypoints to the attached log to indicate these points. Attached is also a picture from the top from where you can see to the right the concrete where the antenna is mounted on and the Gipfelhaus below.”
Steepest Gradients by Distance:
The cycling web news site Cyclist writes of Kitzbuheler Horn:
“The Kitzbüheler Horn, a towering 1,996m peak to the north-east of Kitzbühel, offers a leg-buckling 865m climb over a distance of just 7.1km. It has an average gradient of 12.5% and a maximum of 22.3%. Liquigas-Cannondale’s American cyclist Ted King has described it as ‘a wall’. Local cyclists in Kitzbühel’s bars recall how pro riders forced to endure the climb in the Tour of Austria wept like children for spectators to push them uphill for even the most fleeting respite from the pain. Team Sky’s Austrian rider Bernhard Eisel says of the experience, “It starts off bad and then gets worse and worse all the way up. Such words make this climb sound as enjoyable as a hike in Helmand Province, but road cyclists have a strangely masochistic attraction to big, bad mountains. Cycling is nothing if not the art of suffering.”
Wikipedia notes of this mountain:
“The mountain has several cable cars and gondola lifts and there is a panoramic toll road from Kitzbühel. There are also several mountain inns on its slopes. The so-called Alpenhaus (1,670 m (AA), 47°28′01″N 12°25′45″E ) was in recent years the finish of the King Stage (Königsetappe) of the Tour of Austria cycle race. An Alpine flower garden (Alpenblumen Garten) has been laid out at a height of 1800 m which, despite its name, has mountain plants from all over the world. Every year in August the International Kitzbühler Horn Race takes place. The route runs along the 7.4 km long toll road to the Alpenhaus. Its maximum incline in the closing stages is 22.4%. The record time to the Alpenhaus is held by Beat Bräu who completed the race in a time of 29:11 minutes.
Numerous lifts have been built to support winter sports in the ski region of the same name. On the side facing St. Johann there is a Sommerrodelbahn. There is a small mountain lake level with the half-way station on the cable car from the village. Both peaks are heavily frequented, not just by hikers, but also by mountain bikers due to its good paths.”
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