Below is a map that plots the cycling climbs in John Summerson's The Complete Guide to Climbing (By Bike). John Sommerson's book was the first first (many) I purchased several yeas ago when I began my passion (fixation) with climbing by road bike. John Sommerson's The Complete Guide toClimbing(By Bike) is just what it says it is! Summerson has listed (and we have confirmed) the greatest, best, hardest, most scenic and spectacular cycling climbs in the United States - and, for that we are forever grateful.
This is where it all started for PJAMM cycling.
Author - John Summerson
We have documented all of the climbs in John Summerson’s The Complete Guide to Climbing (By Bike). You can see all the climbs on the “map” or “list” above, or access each individual climb by clicking on the climb itself on the map or on the “list” of the climbs. The page defaults to the map which has pins for each climb in Summerson’s book, but you can also see the full list of climbs by clicking “list” at the top left of the map. The “list” defaults to alphabetical order, but you can also arrange the climbs by difficulty, distance, highest finish, steepest grade, etc. by using the “Sort” feature to the left of the map/list.
In 2011 I was introduced to cycling by my law partner, Max Beach, who is an avid collector of vintage bikes and master cycling historian. Because my primary objective relating to cycling was exercise, i quickly began to focus on climbs in Sonoma County, California where I grew up and live. The first cycling book purchased was John Summerson’s The Complete Guide to Climbing (By Bike), volume 1, above. I augmented Edition 1 with Edition 2 in 2013 and also purchased several other Summerson cycling guides along the way.
When I began to travel internationally for the website 2015, I began to augment my cycling library.
PJAMM Cycling library circa May, 2019.
In 2011, I decided to climb Summerson’s Top 100 US Bike Climbs (p. 164 Edition 1).
From 2011 until 2015 when we turned our sights international, we travelled the US with the intent of documenting Summerson’s Toughest 100 US Bike Climbs. As of May, 2019 we have done all but #59 Okemo, #69 Clingmans Dome, #81 Blue Ridge Summit, #92 Brasstown Bald, #85 Mt. Mitchell (my marking system leaves much to be desired, as is obvious from the image above). We will finish the Summerson 100 in October, 2019.
I cannot say enough about John Summerson’s books. They are well organized and, while the descriptions are brief at times, they are very well written. I could not have done what we have done on the PJAMM Cycling website for the US without frequent reference to John Sommerson’s books - they were my guidepost for locating and getting to the great climbs of the United States. Thank you John Summerson.
Here is an excellent article about John Summerson from JournalNow.com. Here are
John Summerson’s Top 5 Picks for Southeastern climbs by bike.