The definitive list of cycling climbs *in* Sheffield
Sheffield is famously built on 7 hills so there was no shortage of options for this list! Importantly it gives the name to the best cycling club in the city (who I also happen to ride with 😉 )
Colin set out a a couple of ground rules. Firstly nothing from @100Climbs books (sorry Jenkin Rd, Lodge Lane) and the climbs must be predominantly urban and he also wanted a reasonable geographic spread to cover most of the city (You could easily create a list for each area on it’s own, with Walkley, Greystones, Heeley – each of which have more than their fair share of climbs to test your legs on).
If you think any gems have been missed off, let me know and I’ll happily add.
So here we go. Here is the definitive list of cycling climbs in Sheffield.
1000m 5.1% avg. 12.0% max
I did no expect this hill when I first rode it! The climbing comes in 3 sections. The first is the hardest, but they are all hard. Nearby Prospect Place is fun too.
2) Twentywell Lane
1100m 5.9% avg. 11.4% max
Climbing away from the station, past some very grand houses, this hill is definitely not one to burn all your matches too soon on – keep something for the final straight which just keeps on going.
3) Cobnar Road (to the top!)
500m 12.7% avg. 21.8% max
A strong contender for the steepest road in Sheffield. Impossibly steep, until it gets steeper (and steeper) and then abruptly ends. Carry on up the footpath (easier said than done) for the full tick.
4) Derbyshire Lane
700m 7.5% avg. 13.0% max
The length and surprise views at the top elevate this above many other cracking hills in this part of the city. Starts steep and finishes steep, but you get a rest in the middle!
5) Kent Road
200m 16.5% avg. 19.2% max
Brutal but mercifully short, if you can find it. I got *very* lost the first time I tried.
6) Brincliffe Edge
1400m 4.6% avg. 16.7% max
I had no idea this was here until I first rode up it – a country road that’s somehow in the middle of the city.
7) Gleadless Road
3700m 3.2% avg. 11.7%
A real voyage, particularly when you turn left in Gleadless itself and the gradient hits double digits for longer than you really want.
8) Hunter House Road
500m 6.8% avg. 12.8% max
Not subtle, but good fun if you like that sort of thing (which you should). The task is clear from the moment you turn onto the road – a perfectly straight, uniformly steep, wall of hurt. Lovely stuff.
9) Highcliffe Road
600m 13.2% avg. 17.4% max
An absolute beast.
10) Tom Lane
1200m 7.8% avg. 11.9% max
A great climb past some impressively large houses. The true completist will ride up the hellishly steep footpath (still signed as Tom Lane) rather than slink off rightwards at the top – recommended!
11) Ranmoor Crescent
300m 8.2% avg. 12.6% max
Look at those curves. Just look at them. The neighbouring Ranmoor Park Road is a tougher test, but this gloriously quiet little road is well worth a few minutes of anyone’s time.
12) Conduit Road
200m 9.7% avg. 13.1% max
It’s almost impossible to carry any momentum into this one, and the steep stuff starts right from the beginning. It’s tough, but if you struggle on this then maybe steer clear of Blake Street for a while.
13) Paradise Street
100m 9.0% avg. 9% max
Sheffield’s seven hills get all the publicity, but the city centre itself is far from flat, as this little cobbled beauty demonstrates. The cobbles are pretty even but you’ll still know all about them by the top!
14) Snow Lane
200m 9.8% avg. 13.7% max
Another unsung micro-gem right in the heart of the city. So short you can probably sprint all the way up it, right? Then you turn the corner and the top is still a way away. Oops.
15) Birkendale Cobbles
200m 14.2% avg. 15.6% max
Unfairly overshadowed by it’s near neighbour, this is Sheffield’s answer to the Koppenberg. It’s a dead end at the top, so turn round, descend, then hang a left and head up…
16) Blake Street
200m 17.7% avg. 21.2% max
The legend. Marginally shorter than the Zoncolan, but no easier (probably). There is NOWHERE to hide, just neverending 17% slopes. Utterly, utterly evil, but brilliant.
17) Long Lane
400m 13.1% avg. 14.8% max
An arrow-straight horrorshow. The gradient is constantly shifting, so you can never get into any kind of a rhythm and it goes on for altogether longer than you’d really like.
18) Hagg Hill
900m 14.7% avg. 21.6% max
Almost a km at nearly 15% average, this is the stuff of nightmares. The first 300m average almost 20% and you’ll have to strain every sinew just to stop yourself keeling over sideways.
1200m 10.8% avg. 15.9% max (?)
Rivelin Road is ridiculously steep, Waller Road is even steeper, and when you top it off with Tinker Lane (a serious undertaking in its own right), you have something really special.
20) Thrush Street
100m 9.2% avg. 9.3% max
Small, but perfectly formed and a very different proposition to the previous two climbs. A little spot of Flanders in Walkley.
21) High Matlock Avenue
600m 6.6% avg. 11.4% max
I bet you’ve never even heard of this one. Worth seeking out, just for *that* bend, which brings with it one of the best views in Sheffield.
22) Dykes Lane
200m 11.3% avg. 14.1% max
The profile below doesn’t do this justice. It’s hard. The sweeping left hand bend is steep and as you ride on towards the church the incline slowly ratchets up until suddenly dropping back as you reach the school.
23) Langsett Avenue
700m 9.1% avg. 14.6% max (?)
I do not for one second believe that the initial ramp on this road is less than 15%. It’s more like 30% I’m sure.
24) Limestone Cottage Lane
700m 8.1% avg. 14.8% max
Another relative obscurity, tucked away on an industrial estate in Wadsley Bridge, but this is surprisingly green and great, and it has a hairpin!
25) West Hill
600m 11.3% avg. 16.5% max
Technically this is in Rotherham, but only just. Well worth the trip out there (and you can ride up Jenkin Road on the way).
Which one is the best/worst?
The hardest climbs on this list (and therefore in Sheffield) are the unholy triptych of Cobnar Road, Hagg Hill and Rivelin/Waller/Tinker. For me, Hagg Hill takes it on points, but you’d better ride them all yourself just to make sure…
Where are they?
Here’s a map to help you plan your (lockdown guidance-compliant) urban exploration:
Want to ride them all?
Achievable in a very reasonable 100km ride with a mere 2408m ascent. Even includes a bonus ascent of Jenkin Road.
*Update* Since posting this I know of 2 nutters (Lee & Paul) who’ve given this a stab. Who’s next?!
Where do you stack up against others?
Ben @ Veloviewer has kindly made this list into a leaderboard so you can see where you stand in the listings of cyclists taking on these hills.
See the leaderboard here: https://veloviewer.com/segmentHunterSeries/32
Again I’m taking no credit for this list, that’s Colin please share the love over on twitter with him.
Also thanks to Ben @ Veloviewer for the cracking graphics and leaderboard. It’s well worth the £10 to go pro with him. There’s a reason most of the Pro Tour use his system, plus it’s made in Sheffield.
If you think this list is missing a gem, let me know and I’ll happily add!