Saturday, 30 March 2013

Hanase Omote

This morning I finally got up a climb that I've been wanting to tackle for months now - Hanase Omote, regarded as one of the most difficult climbs in the Kyoto area. Its 'mere' Category 2 status somewhat belies the fact that it's a total horror show - an average grade of about 3% for the first 4.5km, then suddenly kicking up to a fairly horrific 9% for the final 5.5km. The road surface is horrible, too, preventing you from keeping a steady cadence as you try to weave around potholes.

Much pain was endured...

My time was pretty woeful but apparently not bad for a first attempt. I'll do it again someday... and it'll be faster. At least now I know it can be done!

Gradient cross-section for the Hanase Omote segment on Strava

At the top!

We originally set out this morning to only do Hanase and then come back down, but actually the ride turned into a pretty substantial 88km affair, with a bunch more climbing including a nice Category 3 which I got up with a flat rear tyre - I didn't notice until the descent, beyond thinking it was more work than it should have been.

All-in-all a nice route which I will probably do again some day... when I'm feeling in a particularly masochistic mood.

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