Swains Lane, London
Now own up, who the hell planted this climb here in this quiet part of London?! We seriously recommend some reconnaissance before you tackle this hidden gem of a climb.
Found just north of Camden, you'll have no indication of what the climb is like as the surrounding areas are built up with houses and shops so tread carefully when approaching this urban climb. You'll turn right at a mini-roundabout from the south and pass a small row of shops including a cafe which is popular with the local Swainys (is that what they are called?!). The road slowly rises us as you ride through this quaint community.
But then you'll meet 'the wall'. Short but steep, it's not pretty and you may have to get out of the seat to keep the cadence going. The gradient may hit 20% in some places but it'll feel more like a 16% climb which is still leg burning.
You'll know you're at the end when the road meets a small green or you've realised you've left a lung back down the road! Your options are head on towards Alexandra Palace for another climb and view point or like some crazy guy a couple of years ago, loop round to Everest Swains!
Swains Lane, Highgate, N6
Average Gradient: 7.3%
Max. Gradient: 19%
NITP PB: 3.54
NITP Torture Score: 7/10
NITP Pedal Point: If this climb was longer, it would get a bigger torture score so count your lucky stars that 'the wall' of Swains is over before you eyes start to see stars! You'll 'hit' the wall when the road begins to narrow and you pass the cemetery. Then its head down, legs pumping, get that ass up there!