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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm looking for some steep climbs close to Denver. I'm a becoming a regular on Lookout Mountain, but that isn't very steep (4.7 miles with an average 5.5% grade - didn't see anything over 10% on my computer). I like Flagstaff in Bldr.(haven't done the average but a couple of sections hit 15-16% on the computer), but that's an out an back. Any other rides steeps within 30-40 miles of Denver?? :thumbsup:

Thanks in advance!!
 

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Can't think of anything that compares with Flagstaff, But High Grade has its moments. Easy to combine with other roads in the area for some interesting loops. Don't know if you consider Evans and Trail Ridge Front Range, but there's some steep climbing for ya. Backside of Loveland Pass, from Keystone to top kicked my a** this weekend, felt steep to me. :D
 

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LyncStar said:
I'm looking for some steep climbs close to Denver. I'm a becoming a regular on Lookout Mountain, but that isn't very steep (4.7 miles with an average 5.5% grade - didn't see anything over 10% on my computer). I like Flagstaff in Bldr.(haven't done the average but a couple of sections hit 15-16% on the computer), but that's an out an back. Any other rides steeps within 30-40 miles of Denver?? :thumbsup:

Thanks in advance!!
Super Jamestown where you go all the way to the Peak to Peak (past the town it gets pretty steep). Magnolia is super steep. Lick Skillet (off Lefthand canyon) is steep. Sections of Sunshine Canyon are pretty steep.
 

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Tons of good climbs just west of Boulder. Mt. Evans is also within your range if you really want to climb. Lick Skillet is ridiculously steep, but it is gravel/dirt as well so keep that in mind. If you don't mind gravel/dirt roads and just want steep, then definitely check out Logan Mill Rd. & Magnolia Rds, they are steep & long.

From this link (http://www.ucar.edu/eac/bike/steep.html):

Flagstaff Rd - from Gregory Canyon at end of Baseline. The first 5 miles have an average grade of 7.4% with a .3 mile section just below Lost Gulch Overlook at 14%. The first .5 mile above Gregory Canyon averages 10%, the 3.5 miles from Gregory Canyon to the Ampitheater turnoff averages 6.5, and the next two miles to the exit from the Mountain Park averages 10%.

Sunshine Canyon - from end of Mapleton. The first 4.5 miles have an average grade of 6.7% with short stretchos up to 14%.

Lee Hill/Olde Stage Rds - west on Lee Hill from Broadway. The climb up Olde Stage features about an 8% average grade. The first mile of Lee Hill beyond the Olde Stage turn-off is 11%.

Lefthand Canyon - from Greenbriar Restaurant to Ward. The first 16.5 miles average 4% grade, but the last 1.5 mile climb to Ward is 10%.

Jamestown - from Greenbriar Restaurant to Jamestown turnoff to above Jamestown. The three-mile section from the Jamestown turnoff to town averages 4.5% grade, with a 2.5 mile stretch above town at 8.3%

Lick Skillet Rd - from Lick Skillet in Left Hand Canyon to Gold Hill. This is a gravel road, climbs 800 feet in one mile for a 15% grade.

Magnolia Rd - from Boulder Canyon. The first 4 miles have an average grade of 9% with a section at the bottom over 13%. Drawback to this ride is a busy approach through Boulder Canyon.

Sugarloaf Rd - from Boulder Canyon. The first 4 miles average between 6% and 7% grades. Drawback to this ride is a busy approach through Boulder Canyon.

Peak to Peak Hwy - north from Nederland to Allenspark. Four miles north of Nederland sustains an average grade of 7.7% for two miles. The return trip from Allenspark has 7.5% for one mile (three miles south of Colo. 7)

Golden Gate Canyon - west on Golden Gate Canyon Rd from Colo. 93. The road climbs for nearly 13 miles with an average grade of 6.5% and a one-mile stretch near the top at over 10%.

NCAR Rd - from NIST up bike path up Hollyberry Rd to Deer Valley Rd to Table Mesa. Average grade is 5.7% with sections up to 8% grade.

Modified Morgul-Bismarck - from Marshall Road (Colo. 170) to south on McCaslin Blvd to west on Airport Rd (Colo. 128). On McCaslin, The Hump is 8% grade, The Wall is 12%, and a section on Colo. 128 is 6.5% - each shorter than a mile. Due to high traffic on Colo. 93, don't complete the loop but retrace your route the way you came.

Carter Lake - north from Boulder. After approximately 30 miles of flat, the climb to Carter Lake averages a grade of 6.4%
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Woolbury said:
Can't think of anything that compares with Flagstaff, But High Grade has its moments. Easy to combine with other roads in the area for some interesting loops. Don't know if you consider Evans and Trail Ridge Front Range, but there's some steep climbing for ya. Backside of Loveland Pass, from Keystone to top kicked my a** this weekend, felt steep to me. :D
Evans isn't that steep, but makes up for it with howling wind, snow, sleet and potential for death. Haven't done Trail Ridge, but that's a bit of a hike.

What is "High Grade"?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
SenorBlanco said:
Tons of good climbs just west of Boulder. Mt. Evans is also within your range if you really want to climb. Lick Skillet is ridiculously steep, but it is gravel/dirt as well so keep that in mind. If you don't mind gravel/dirt roads and just want steep, then definitely check out Logan Mill Rd. & Magnolia Rds, they are steep & long.

From this link (http://www.ucar.edu/eac/bike/steep.html):

Flagstaff Rd - from Gregory Canyon at end of Baseline. The first 5 miles have an average grade of 7.4% with a .3 mile section just below Lost Gulch Overlook at 14%. The first .5 mile above Gregory Canyon averages 10%, the 3.5 miles from Gregory Canyon to the Ampitheater turnoff averages 6.5, and the next two miles to the exit from the Mountain Park averages 10%.

Sunshine Canyon - from end of Mapleton. The first 4.5 miles have an average grade of 6.7% with short stretchos up to 14%.

Lee Hill/Olde Stage Rds - west on Lee Hill from Broadway. The climb up Olde Stage features about an 8% average grade. The first mile of Lee Hill beyond the Olde Stage turn-off is 11%.

Lefthand Canyon - from Greenbriar Restaurant to Ward. The first 16.5 miles average 4% grade, but the last 1.5 mile climb to Ward is 10%.

Jamestown - from Greenbriar Restaurant to Jamestown turnoff to above Jamestown. The three-mile section from the Jamestown turnoff to town averages 4.5% grade, with a 2.5 mile stretch above town at 8.3%

Lick Skillet Rd - from Lick Skillet in Left Hand Canyon to Gold Hill. This is a gravel road, climbs 800 feet in one mile for a 15% grade.

Magnolia Rd - from Boulder Canyon. The first 4 miles have an average grade of 9% with a section at the bottom over 13%. Drawback to this ride is a busy approach through Boulder Canyon.

Sugarloaf Rd - from Boulder Canyon. The first 4 miles average between 6% and 7% grades. Drawback to this ride is a busy approach through Boulder Canyon.

Peak to Peak Hwy - north from Nederland to Allenspark. Four miles north of Nederland sustains an average grade of 7.7% for two miles. The return trip from Allenspark has 7.5% for one mile (three miles south of Colo. 7)

Golden Gate Canyon - west on Golden Gate Canyon Rd from Colo. 93. The road climbs for nearly 13 miles with an average grade of 6.5% and a one-mile stretch near the top at over 10%.

NCAR Rd - from NIST up bike path up Hollyberry Rd to Deer Valley Rd to Table Mesa. Average grade is 5.7% with sections up to 8% grade.

Modified Morgul-Bismarck - from Marshall Road (Colo. 170) to south on McCaslin Blvd to west on Airport Rd (Colo. 128). On McCaslin, The Hump is 8% grade, The Wall is 12%, and a section on Colo. 128 is 6.5% - each shorter than a mile. Due to high traffic on Colo. 93, don't complete the loop but retrace your route the way you came.

Carter Lake - north from Boulder. After approximately 30 miles of flat, the climb to Carter Lake averages a grade of 6.4%
Most Excellent!!! Thanks so much!! :thumbsup:
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·

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LyncStar said:
Is High Grade the name of the ride or a street name???
Both. When you're going up S Deer Creek Canyon Rd there's a left turn with a sign that says high grade road next XX miles. However, at the turn off from Deer Creek Canyon the road name is S Deer Creek Rd. It then changes to Highgrade Rd and at some point, the name of the road becomes Pleasant Park.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Bulldozer said:
Both. When you're going up S Deer Creek Canyon Rd there's a left turn with a sign that says high grade road next XX miles. However, at the turn off from Deer Creek Canyon the road name is S Deer Creek Rd. It then changes to Highgrade Rd and at some point, the name of the road becomes Pleasant Park.
Found it on Google Earth. Though it identifies S Deer Creek Canyon Rd as West Deer Creek Canyon Road. Do you know how to get from the C-470 Bikepath to West/South Deer Creek???
 

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LyncStar said:
Found it on Google Earth. Though it identifies S Deer Creek Canyon Rd as West Deer Creek Canyon Road. Do you know how to get from the C-470 Bikepath to West/South Deer Creek???
Coming from East, best way is to exit bike path before dog park at Chatfield park. Take road through park and wind to Wadsworth at Deer Creek Canyon Road. From the West (north) exit bike path at Kipling. Like others said, there are many different loops you could make. Although "High Grade" is the name of the road for only a few miles in the middle of the climb, most bikers call the climb "High Grade". By the way, it is 6 miles from Kipling to the West Deer Creek turnoff and another 8 miles to the top.

Really, the entire front range is at your riding disposal from this location. A good training ride for the triple is to ride over High Grade and up over Juniper Pass in the same ride. I've also incorporated Lookout Mountain and there are some nice Evergreen loops you can easily incorporate into a Deer Creek Canyon ride. All depends on your desired distance and time you have...
 

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ProudDaddy said:
Really, the entire front range is at your riding disposal from this location. A good training ride for the triple is to ride over High Grade and up over Juniper Pass in the same ride. I've also incorporated Lookout Mountain and there are some nice Evergreen loops you can easily incorporate into a Deer Creek Canyon ride. All depends on your desired distance and time you have...
That's what I've been trying to say. Get the book, he does a great job of describing all those backroads, and you can put together a wide range of loops. To me this is the best climbing avilable close to the Denver metro area, and I'm up there at least once a week. I live on the east end of town and just drive to the Wadsworth/Deer Cr Canyon intersection, join the other 20-30 riders gearing up and start a loop from there. Often if time allows I'll come down and go across into Chatfield for 10-15 flat mi for a finale.
 

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Woolbury said:
That's what I've been trying to say. Get the book, he does a great job of describing all those backroads, and you can put together a wide range of loops. To me this is the best climbing avilable close to the Denver metro area, and I'm up there at least once a week. I live on the east end of town and just drive to the Wadsworth/Deer Cr Canyon intersection, join the other 20-30 riders gearing up and start a loop from there. Often if time allows I'll come down and go across into Chatfield for 10-15 flat mi for a finale.
Sounds like a good book, especially for anyone new to the area or biking in CO. A resource I use is teamevergreen.org, road rides (btw, a good group to ride with as well). They have nice maps with elevation and description. They do a few rides that intersect with North/South Turkey Creek (part of any DCC loop). Particulary fun are the 3/4 Creeks Loop and the Brook Forest Loop. Maybe I need a copy of that book for some new rides.
 

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Deer Creek/High Grade/Pleasant Park is a most excellent ride. You can also do the ride in reverse... then the climb once you turn onto Pleasant Park/City View is "interesting." It's also called the "Elevator Shaft." :cool:

Also, look for Brook Forest and/or Black Mountain (OUCH OUCH OUCH!) on the Team Evergreen site maps...also I've heard High Drive is super-steep. The TE site is a wonderful resource for maps and group rides.
 

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Secret Coal Creek Climbs

Many people ride up SH72 through Coal Creek Canyon, but almost no one does the other climbs in Coal Creek.

- The first 'secret' is that Flagstaff out of Boulder doesn't end at the amphitheatre, the overlook, Walker Ranch or Gross Reservoir. If you ride up Flagstaff, keep going to the reservoir parking area, then turn left onto Gross Dam road down to the creek (it is unpaved but usually pretty smooth), and you can continue all the way over to Coal Creek Canyon. Gross Dam road intersects 72, or you can cut down Crescent Park Drive and lose a mile of unpaved road. From the creek to Crescent Park is about a 4 mile climb and it gains about 1500 feet. If you are coming up Coal Creek on 72, you can turn north on Crescent Park to Gross Dam and head back to Boulder. Crescent Park has a 15% section, and Gross Dam has some nasty sections on its way to Flagstaff. And, of course, the descent down Flagstaff to Boulder is excellent.

- The second 'secret' is that on Highway 72 about seven miles west of Highway 93, there is a paved road called Twin Spruce/Gap Road that goes south through Golden Gate State Park all the way to Highway 119 between Rollinsville and Blackhawk.. It is paved for the first four miles, then smooth dirt from the boundary of the park to 119. It gains about 1800 feet in the four paved miles, then rolls on the dirt section, with some stingers in there. The pavement has a few 12-15% sections. You can also cut over from Panorama Point via Mountain Base Road to 42/Golden Gate and back to Golden if you are headed that way. A sign on Mountain Base claims a 20% grade, but you'll be heading down it from the north.

- The third 'secret' is that Jeffco paved a nice loop in Coal Creek a few years ago, so if you are heading up 72 and want to hide from the traffic for a few miles, turn south on Skyline Drive off of 72 next to the Sinclair convenience store. After 1/2 mile, turn right on Ranch Elsie, and continue west. Ranch Elsie loops back around and joins 72 a few miles west of the store. If you are feeling frisky, there is a way to connect dirt residential roads off of Ranch Elsie all the way to Wondervu, but I'll let you figure that out. It is a maze back there, but it is very possible to do that, and very tough climbing in that area. They have started covering the residential roads with recycled asphalt, which makes for a road bike friendly surface in general.
 

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Others in the foothills around evergreen / conifer

out of downtown evegreen, head to brook forest road. it has a 2-3-4% grade for about 5miles then it kicks inwith some pretty steep stuff for another 4 miles. continue over the top it turns into shoadow mtn and go 4 miles to 73. turn around and go up shadow mtn, the last 1.5mi is killer.

often overlooked, the climb up from kermits to the top of floyd hill - 2miles, 8-10%. try a couple repeats.

from the top of the high grade / pleasant park climb (at the schoolhouse) go about a mile and turn right on Oelhman and go down what we call the city view route. take it all the way down. Then turn around and go back up, killer.

riding past tiny town turn right on north turkey go under 285 go up about one mile and turn right on high drive. take this windy sucker up to the top when it turns into stanley park. you can continue on down to downtown evergreen. reverse course.
 
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