A gradient is consistently inconsistent, always taxing but continually changing across beautiful moorland

By Simon Warren

Stage two | 85km | Oxenhope | Rating: 5/10

The climb starts in the centre of Oxenhope, rising away from a mini-roundabout at the junction of the A6033 and Station Road, but the Tour route doesn’t join it until it reaches Shaw Lane a little further up.

From here there’s a few hundred metres arcing left out of town before you break sharp right heading for open land. Up ahead as the slope increases in severity there’s an Alpine-esque right-hand bend that should make the mountain men feel at home.

From here the gradient is consistently inconsistent, always taxing but continually changing, I simply could not find a comfortable gear to tackle the parcour across the beautiful moorland.

Past the Wagon and Horses pub you continue to wind left and right and soon a small collection of conifers come into view. This marks the beginning of the end of the climb and as you snake around them the gradient ebbs away.

You pass a car park on the left then finish as the road plateaus in the wonderful, almost pristine emptiness.

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Factfile

Where Although the climb starts in Oxenhope the Tour joins it at the junction of Shaw Lane and Hebden Bridge Road heading south on the A6033
Grid ref SE 013 330 (OS104)
Length 3100m
Height gain 194m
Approx climb time 11mins

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