I've heard people say that they appalachians are some of the most difficult mts to ride in. I would have thought that the larger the mts. (like the rockies or alps) the harder they'd be to ride through. Any thoughts?
I have heard the appalachians have steeper grades than other US ranges, like the rockies. All my mountain climbing has been done in the appalachians of KY and NC & there are some SERIOUS walls in that part of the world.
Iron Horse Mtn Bike, Kona Dr Dew, need a real road bike!
I have friends who have biked cross country and said that the Appalachians were the steepest part. I know they were a real impediment to the early settlers with only a couple or easy ways through, one being the Cumberland gap.
In lower mountain ranges like the Appalachians, it's common for grades to be steep, and for the roads to have a lot of ups and downs. A road might simply go directly over a ridge, rather than around it. In higher mountain ranges, roads usually must be built in the valleys in most cases (because the ridges are simply too high), so grades tend to be more even, less steep, and with far fewer ups and downs on the way to the top. One of the most difficult rides I've ever done was Skyline Drive in Shenandoah National Park in the Appalachians. A half-hour climb would be followed by a 5 minute descent, followed by a half-hour climb followed by a 5 minute descent, followed by........