Also see our White Mountains Fall Colors page.
Below are the top 3 bike climbs in New Hampshire. By far and away, Mt. Washington is the hardest of them all - but, hey, it’d also be the hardest in all but 2 other states. New Hampshire is a great place to climb by bike, particularly in during peak fall color season. Our favorite bike climb after Mt. Washington also happens to be the second hardest - Hurricane Mountain Road (both sides). Hurricane Mountain Road is a very quiet climb that is quite challenging and exceptionally beautiful during the fall.
NEW HAMPSHIRE’S #1 / US #3 / WORLD #31
MT. WASHINGTON AUTO ROAD
US Top 10 Most Epic Bike Climb
Note: The Mt Washington Auto Road Bicycle Hillclimb benefitting Tin Mountain Conservation Center is held the second Saturday in August. Fastest times up Mt. Washington: Tom Danielson USA 2002 (0:49:24) and Jeannie Longo CAN 2000 (0:58:14).
2017 Jersey featured PJAMM Cycling.
Mt. Washington is part of the US Hillclimb Series which includes races on Mt. Evans (7-27-19), Mt. Penn (8-4-19), Mt. Mansfield (8-25-19), Mt. Baker (9-8-19) and Gibraltar Road (9-21-19).
Mt. Washington, according to The Climbing Bible -- John Summerson’s The Complete Guide to Climbing (by Bike) -- is “the most difficult hill climb race in the U.S. and perhaps the world,” and “the annual hill climb race up its slopes is perhaps the most brutal on earth” (Summerson 249, 62).
NEW HAMPSHIRE’S #2 BIKE CLIMB
HURRICANE MOUNTAIN ROAD EAST
Cycling Hurricane Mountain Road East
Ride 2.3 miles gaining 1,195’ at 10% average grade.
This is the harder of the two routes up to the top of Hurricane Mountain Road, although the western approach is also very challenging. Both climbs are exceptional - we rank them as nearly epic, actually. While short, these are brutal bike climbs up very steep grades. The steepest ¼ mile is 16% and steepest ½ mile 13.6%.
New Hampshire's White Mountains are the place to cycle during leaf peeping season.
NEW HAMPSHIRE’S #3 BIKE CLIMB
KEARSARGE MOUNTAIN ROAD
Cycling Kearsarge Mountain Road
Ride 3.5 miles gaining 1,470’ at 8% average grade.
This is the third hardest bike climb in New Hampshire and may be the most scenic - particularly during leaf peeping season. 👍👍. It is said that on a clear day the skyscrapers of Boston can be seen 80 miles away. While we could see Boston from Wachusetts Mountain on our trip there, we could not spot Boston from Mt. Kearsarge on the day in October we rode this beauty.
There are some brief extremely steep sections (22% is the highest grade I encountered)
The steepest ¼ mile (13.6%) and ½ mile (12.8%) begin about a quarter mile from the start.