Cycling Rosedale Chimney
Ride .9 miles gaining 540’ at 11.6% average grade.
This is one of the great climbs of England - scenic, wide open and HARD!! A quarter mile stretch in the middle averages 17.3%.
Rosedale Chimney rises out of the small yet touristy town of Rosedale proper. There is a large caravan park in the town and it looks to be a popular spot for caravanners and motorcycle tourers in need of a vanilla cone - seriously, everyone I saw in town was eating an ice cream cone. It’s a punishing climb up from town and most of it is double digit gradients. Two switchbacks bring you to a 19nth century Kiln that is worth a visit. The summit point is unmarked and surrounded by a very barren landscape of heather moorland.
Climb begins at the bridge at the south eastern edge of Rosedale Abbey
Simon Warren writes of this one:
“Few climbs have such a fearsome reputation as Rosedale Chimney, and rightly so as I snapped my chain not once but twice in my attempt to conquer this vicious stretch of tarmac. Leaving Rosedale Abbey, a sign warns you of the 1-in-3 - yes, 1-in-3 - gradient to come.” 100 Greatest Cycling Climbs, A Road Cyclist’s Guide to Britain’s Hills, p. 95.
As Simon Says . . . this sign greets you at the start.
Good news and bad news - yes, it is a monster (11.5% average and a 200 meter 19% stretch), but . . . good news(?) . . . it is only for .9 miles. . . - little solace . . . maybe . . .
These bends are the start of a .2 mile 19% segment.
We really enjoyed the climb which begins just outside Rosedale Abbey on Gill Lane (becomes Rosedale Chimney Bank at 300 yards). We have nice views to the north and back down the hill as we climb and are reminded at the top of just how severe this climb is by the sign which tells cyclists to dismount to descend.
This climb is in North York Moors National Park, established 1952 with 143,000 hectare (353,361 acres) which has one of the largest expanses of heather moorland in the United Kingdom.
Bank Top Ironstone mining kilns were built in 1856.
Rosedale Chimney hosted the British National Hill Climb Championships in 1987 (Tom Ward wins and Chris Boardman comes in second - Boardman will go on to win the next 4 consecutive championships).
That’s a wrap!!