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.