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#15667 - 07/14/05 02:51 PM (Tour de France) Climbing Categories...
JoeKayak Offline
old hand

Registered: 06/21/02
Posts: 970
Loc: Manhattan
the only thing i've been able to deduce about cat 1, cat 2, cat 3 and beyond cat is that they are based on steepness, length and something else. i'm curious if anyone knows the exact definitions (or a source) and if these classifications apply to any of our regional hills (like some of the catskills climbs, 'daks climbs or even route 6 up to the bear mountain bridge from peekskill). and if you know what fall river road or trail ridge road--route 36 in colorado, RMNP, i'd be curious about that too.

thanks.

jk


Edited by webmaster (07/14/05 05:16 PM)

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#15668 - 07/15/05 04:22 PM Re: (Tour de France) Climbing Categories... [Re: JoeKayak]
hartmann Offline
member

Registered: 11/20/99
Posts: 161
Loc: Northfield, VT
The commentators on Eurosport were discussing this the other day. Originally, early 1900s, the climbs were classified by what the lowest gear a car would have to use to make it up the climb. Over time, the classification has evolved and takes into account average steepness, length, elevation, maximum steepness and possibly other things. The commentators did not know exactly. What I have done to give myself an idea of what categories some of the climbs I do, was to take the TDF climb length and average steepness of each climb for the past 2 years and put them into an excel sheet ploting each category in a different color. I then went out with my car and altimeter and measured the length and elevation gain of the climbs I do most frequently and added them to the excel sheet. This works pretty well even though there is some overlap between categories.

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#15669 - 07/18/05 03:35 PM Re: (Tour de France) Climbing Categories... [Re: JoeKayak]
crackers Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 03/21/01
Posts: 3424
Loc: pdx
dunno if this helps, but the climb from SLC to PC via the canyon=>interstate would be category 1...

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#15670 - 07/18/05 04:39 PM Re: (Tour de France) Climbing Categories... [Re: JoeKayak]
edk Offline
addict

Registered: 05/06/02
Posts: 441
Loc: allentown, NJ
I think it is a subjective ranking of the climbs in that years tour by the director based on

- alititude gained
- steepness
- rise over run (percent grade)
- road conditions
- the postion of the climb in the race (early or late in the stage)

I know that you can see and feel a lot of cat 4 climbs around here, but not a lot of HC. I bet that Mt washington would be HC for sure (less than 50% paved, sustained at 12% + and 22% hardest with over 5k ft gained), But I think the ADK 540 and some places in the catskills wold easily hit cat 1.

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#15671 - 07/18/05 07:47 PM Re: (Tour de France) Climbing Categories... [Re: edk]
JoeKayak Offline
old hand

Registered: 06/21/02
Posts: 970
Loc: Manhattan


ed- i think that's what i was unclear on: it's subjective. thanks....

now i'm curious what our local stuff is...particulary, the really steep mf on route 28 in the catskills from pine hill up to bellayre...if anyone knows....

jk

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#15672 - 07/18/05 08:57 PM Re: (Tour de France) Climbing Categories... [Re: JoeKayak]
edk Offline
addict

Registered: 05/06/02
Posts: 441
Loc: allentown, NJ
Quote:



ed- i think that's what i was unclear on: it's subjective. thanks....

now i'm curious what our local stuff is...particulary, the really steep mf on route 28 in the catskills from pine hill up to bellayre...if anyone knows....

jk




You could probably make it up...

- go out and ride a centruy with 10,000 gained THEN go ride that hill -- a cat 1 or worse!
- rest for three days, drive to the base, pedal up the top then go home and rest again - no worse then cat 3

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#15673 - 07/19/05 02:03 AM Re: (Tour de France) Climbing Categories... [Re: edk]
JoeKayak Offline
old hand

Registered: 06/21/02
Posts: 970
Loc: Manhattan
Quote:

Quote:



ed- i think that's what i was unclear on: it's subjective. thanks....

now i'm curious what our local stuff is...particulary, the really steep mf on route 28 in the catskills from pine hill up to bellayre...if anyone knows....

jk




You could probably make it up...

- go out and ride a centruy with 10,000 gained THEN go ride that hill -- a cat 1 or worse!
- rest for three days, drive to the base, pedal up the top then go home and rest again - no worse then cat 3




okay...since i've always wanted to ride from NP up over the ridge (or now that clove rd is paved all the way, that way) to the ashokan and then hit 28, ending on that climb...so i'll go with the beyond cat. there. i made it up. wow...self agrandizement is easy...

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#15674 - 07/19/05 01:04 PM Re: (Tour de France) Climbing Categories... [Re: JoeKayak]
crackers Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 03/21/01
Posts: 3424
Loc: pdx
Unfortunately, I don't think its really subjective. The HC climbs have always been HC, except I think Ventoux which went HC on the N-S side when they rebuilt the road.

They used to report the average gradient, max and length. The reason the long long long ride out of Salt Lake is not HC is that it never gets steep. Most of the HC climbs in the tour have signifcant parts that approach 20%! Its insane!

The below from VeloNews...
Quote:

Tour climbs are classified in five somewhat arbitrary categories:
CAT. 4 Usually less than 3km in length, an easy pitch that amounts to no more than a sustained rise in the road
CAT. 3 Slightly harder, up to 5km in length
CAT. 2 Between 5km and 10km, and steeper than a 4-percent grade
CAT. 1 Long and steep. Between 10km and 20km, and steeper than a 5-percent grade.
HORS CATEGORIE (HC) OR ABOVE CATEGORY The longest, steepest mountain climbs. Extremely difficult climbs, sometimes 15km to 20km, with grades often exceeding 10 percent.




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#15675 - 07/19/05 05:04 PM Re: (Tour de France) Climbing Categories... [Re: crackers]
MurphysLaw Offline
gumby

Registered: 03/12/02
Posts: 2308
Loc: Hudson Valley, NY
Here's another link for ya:

Climbing categories explained - sorta

and a snippet from that site:

The organizers of the Tour de France also claim that the quality of
the road surface can influence the rating of a climb. If the surface
is very poor, like some of the more obscure climbs in the Pyrenees,
then the rating may be bumped up.

4th Category - the lowest category, climbs of 200-500 feet(70-150m).

3rd Category - climbs of 500-1600 feet(150-500m).

2nd Category - climbs of 1600-2700 ft.(500-800m)

1st Category - climbs of 2700-5000ft(800-1500m)

Hors Category - the hardest, climbs of 5000ft+(1500m+)


Hope this is helpful.

PS - for those who care, Mt Washington is definitely HC.
In case you had any doubt...
_________________________
"Flailing?" "Flail on!"

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#15676 - 07/19/05 05:49 PM Re: (Tour de France) Climbing Categories... [Re: edk]
crackers Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 03/21/01
Posts: 3424
Loc: pdx
One thing i've noticed is that people seem to think that the hills get a different category based on whether they're at the beginning or end of the stage. Often it seems --to me at least-- that the route is actually different as well when the climb's grade gets changed. In Murphy's link they talk about the Galibier, but guess what, for HC galibier you start in the village, for 1st cat you start above the village having taken another road through town to reach the start of the 'true climbing'...

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