Page Contributor(s): John Summerson, The Complete Guide to Climbing (By Bike), 2nd Edition.
Steepest Gradient (%)
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Cycling Pavia Road, Blue Knob State Park, Pennsylvania
Ride 4.4 miles gaining 1,633’ at 7% average grade.
Pavia Road, located in Blue Knob State Park, is the most difficult bike climb in Pennsylvania. While the grade never reaches the intolerable levels of the extremely difficult climb category, there are certainly challenging segments on this climb. The steepest quarter mile is 11% and the steepest half mile 9.6%. This scenic bike climb is in the Alleghenies (Allegheny Mountains, part of the Appalachian Mountain Range).
“The approach to Blue Knob State Park from the west is a contender for the most difficult in Pennsylvania. Located in the south central part of the state, you ride among small homes and over moderate grade to begin. Soon the houses disappear as you enter thick forest and steeper grade appears. About 2 miles into the ascent you encounter a switchback and continued stout grade. Soon after a descent appears which lasts for 0.4 miles. Climbing resumes for a short distance and at mile 3.7 turn right to continue up the mountain. The grade is fairly stout but steady here over this final section as several switchbacks take you to the summit at the top of a ski area.” (This quote is provided with the approval of John Summerson from his book, The Complete Guide to Climbing (by Bike), 2nd Edition, pg. 98.)
Climb begins just after passing through the small, charming and well kept township of Pavia
(settled 1794; population 276).
Input from Rob Virelli who drove nearly 6 hours round trip from Exton, PA to do these climbs: “I did climbs yesterday - parked at the state parks office. It was awesome, did the climb 5 times - 3 on pavia road, 2 on overland pass. I liked the contrast of the two roads, climbs weren't terribly different in terms of stats, but totally different vibes.”
The quaint township of Pavia, Pennsylvania.
Blue Knob State Park Headquarters on the right just after the start of the climb.
Blue Knob State Park was established in 1945 and consists of 6,128 acres.
Steepest quarter mile begins half a mile into the climb.
Scenic bike climb.
Turn right to stay on Pavia Road at mile 3.2.
PJAMM App shows climb details and elevation profile.
Finish the climb at the Blue Knob All Seasons Resort.
Traffic and Roadway Surface Report: Traffic is light and slow moving on this climb. The roadway was in excellent condition as of September 2020.
That’s a wrap!