Challacombe Hill (SW #7) Bike Climb - PJAMM Cycling

Challacombe Hill (SW #7)

United Kingdom

All the cycling data and info you'll need to climb Challacombe Hill (SW #7)

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Climb Summary

Cycling Challacombe Hill - sunset over water, rolling hills in foreground, Simon Warren's 100 Greatest Cycling Climbs #7 Logo in corner     

Cycling Challacombe Hill, Devon, England.

Time this ride just right and you’ll have a magnificent sunset along the way.             

Cycling Challacombe Hill - photo collage, trail lined with tall grasses leading to hillside, white sign stating "The National Trust Woolacombe Warren", hedges growing along sides of pathway, pathway leading toward costal village, sunset over water       

Cycling Challacombe Hill - very steep, very narrow roadway lined with tall grasses, roadway is leading up from a costal village dotted with white buildings and homes, sunset over water in background

This is a brief climb leaving essentially from the waters of Bristol Bay in the coastal resort village of Woolacombe.  While this climb is short at 1.3 kilometers, most of it is quite stout (15% from 200 meters to 1.1 kilometers).  The climb gives us some magnificent views of Bristol Channel.

Cycling Challacombe Hill - photo collage, shoreline with gentle waves at sunset, sign for "Sandy Burrows Car Park" "Welcome to Woolacombe's Award Winning Beach"

Woolacombe is named by TripAdvisor as one of the best family friendly beaches in U.K.

Cycling Challacombe Hill - bike parked against road sign for 23% grade noting "Low gear for 1/2 mile", PJAMM Cycling jersey draped over bike, hillside at golden hour with sun setting over water in background

A short but steep climb to the finish at the top of the hill.

Challacombe Hill hosted the British National Hill Climb Championships in 1985 (Darryl Webster wins the third of his four consecutive championships this year).  This climb is in the North Devon Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

Cycling Challacombe Hill - sun at various stages of setting over water, hillsides in foreground


Steepest ½ kilometer begins at 300m (16%)

100 Hills for George writes of this climb:

“This one is a beautiful road heading out of town, not the main road that takes you back "East" and to civilisation (well, the rest of the country), but one that hugs the coast and climbs up much steeper. As you climb up you have the beach to the back and right of you, the town to the left of you and a blinking steep hill in front of you..

It isn't a massively long climb, Simon says you should do it in around 8 minutes and I had the benefit of a decent tail wind so managed it in 7 (which was good as I have my winter legs on at the moment), but it is steep, steep, steep all the way up. Once it kicks in (which it does pretty quickly) it is all at 15% and above.

Even reaches 25% at one point, although I never saw it above 23% on my garmin, but it is well worth it, especially for the decent as you get amazing views over Woolacombe and over the sea. On a day like today, well worth it (and then the dog had the BEST play on the beach).”