We have traveled through England in 2018 and 2022 to document the hardest there. Our lists are based upon (1) our objective Fiets index ranking - for the hardest climbs, (2) Simon Warren’s (https://www.100climbs.co.uk/books) contribution to our effort by listing for us his Top 10 Lists for hardest and (3) our subjective assessment of the roughly 50 top and recommended climbs we’ve done in the country.
The following are lists of the 3 hardest via Fiets (10 photos in the collage at the top of the page are the Top 10 from #1 The Great Dun Fell to #10 Lamps Moss) and Simon Warren's Top 10 Hardest a road bike climbs of England.
HARDEST BIKE CLIMB IN ENGLAND BY FIETS FORMULA
THE GREAT DUN FELL
Ride 4.6 miles gaining 2,044’ at 8.4% average grade.
This unique road bike climb is both the hardest and the highest paved road in England. The climb takes us from 714 meters, to the radar dome 848 meters (2,782’) above sea level in just 7.5 kilometers! The road ends at an Air Traffic Control facility that services Northern England and Southern Scotland.
SECOND HARDEST CLIMB IN ENGLAND
Ride 1.6 miles gaining 1,003’ at 12.2% average grade (¼ mile at 18.5%)
This climb begins in site of Bristol Channel to the north and hits us straight away! The first 300 meters average 11% (a nice warm up), followed by the 450 meters double hairpin section at 18.5% average grade. This difficult 2.5 kilometer climbs is bordered for the first kilometer by bushes and trees until opening up with pasture lands and northerly views of Bristol Channel for the last 1.5 kilometers.
THIRD HARDEST CLIMB IN ENGLAND
Ride 2 miles gaining 1,074’ at 10.4% (11.4% climb only)
The first 1.4 kilometers of this 3.1 kilometer climb are surrounded and covered by trees. From 1.4km to the finish we have wide open views, including some scenic looks back to the north of Bristol Channel.
ENGLAND’S HARDEST ROAD BIKE CLIMB - SIMON WARREN PICK
Cycling Bamford Clough - the steepest bike climb in the UK.
Ride only 3/10’s of a mile but gain 381’ at 24% over that stretch!!
SIMON WARREN #2 HARDEST
Cycling Hardknott Pass West
Ride 3.2 kilometers gaining 314 meters at 9.8% average grade.
SIMON WARREN #3 HARDEST
THE GREAT DUN FELL
See summary above.
Simon Warren’s picks for third to tenth hardest bike climbs in England:
4. Rosedale Chimney
5. Wrynose Pass
6. Dunkery Beacon
7. Chapel Fell
8. Buschcombe Lane
9. Asterton Bank
10. Trooper Lane