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Old 07-19-08, 05:26 AM   #51
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Originally Posted by bab2000 View Post
How do you determine hills percentage of incline or the grade of a road?

I always guessed it was degree of angle, yet reading this it is not.
<math nerd> its actually the tangent of the angle </math nerd>
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Old 07-19-08, 06:34 AM   #52
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<Nerdy>Easiest way is Rise/Run to estimate average slope (or grade). I tried to use gmaps pedometer, but the dataset points were too close for the algorithm.</nerdy>
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Old 07-19-08, 07:25 AM   #53
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Originally Posted by sim0n View Post
<math nerd> its actually the tangent of the angle </math nerd>
Originally Posted by Tom Stormcrowe View Post
<Nerdy>Easiest way is Rise/Run to estimate average slope (or grade). </nerdy>
Thanks. I will see if I have my Trig book from long ago to confirm I understand what you say, about the tangent thing.

If I grasped Tom's simplified explanation and previous answers, then I would guesstimate the difference between the beginning elevation and the destination elevation, then divide by the distance traveled to reach the higher point (in same measure) and then multiply by 100, I have my percentage of the hill.

As experienced Saturday, the estimated hill height is 50 feet from the base, and the road surface traveled was .2 of a mile to reach the crest. Convert .2 of a mile to feet, .1 of 5280 = 528, so .2 = 1,056.

50 / 1056 = .0473 * 100 = 4.73 % incline.


A hill from back home I climbed almost daily on trusty Huffy (single speed), fun to go down, not fun to return home, was listed at 88 feet. The distance to climb is a quarter of mile, .25.

88 / 1320 = .0666 * 100 = 6.66 %

It has been cut down twice, the paper indicated 30 feet had been trimmed off the hill in the past 20 years for safety reasons.

58 / 1320 = .0439 * 100 = 4.39 % still a good work out.

The home I grew up on, (mom still resides there), is about half way up a hill as tall, but stepped, making it easier to travel.

This is interesting.

Of course if I am incorrect in my understanding of how explained please correct, it has been 37 years since trig course in school, and then likely did not understand theroy then , but now can apply then of interest.
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Old 07-19-08, 07:34 AM   #54
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Originally Posted by Iamkar33m View Post
I was actually riding the Madone up the 3.5% grade

I only found out today what the grade of that hill was, thats why the delay in the post. But what's funny is another street I rode up a few days before is 1/5th of a mile at 7% grade and I didnt struggle as much with that one.

I began to suspect that hills are only psychologically challenging, meaning if you think it will kick your arse it will definitely do so. If you don't think to much about it and just do it, it's much easier.
I find a short steep hill, less of a challenge then a long shallow one. Although hill training and wind training helps, when I first started I thought that Poplar Plains Road, here in Toronto was impassable. It's a double whammy, in that it's steep and long (about a 200m rise over 2000m) or about 10% over 1¼ miles. I've seen featherweight roadies in full kit on $10,000 plastic bikes, walking that one, so it is quite challenging...... This year I have ridden my 16kg MTB based hybrid, up that hill, with out needing to stand or use the granny ring. I think it's all that riding into 25km/h wind that's made it possible.

Hill training goes like this:

First time, man this hill is a killer, I think I will die before I get to the top.
5th time, uh oh I better drop into low gear for this one.
10th time, I better gear down a little for this.
25th time, hill? what hill?
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Old 07-24-08, 03:17 PM   #55
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A little note of progress. There's a part of my normal neighborhood ride that is uphill. It's not very uphill, and you might not even notice it walking. But when I first started riding again, I would have to downshift to go up and would still be breathing hard when I topped the rise.

Well, a few days ago, I was out on my Worksman cruiser and came to that spot, and was feeling pretty good, so I had at it. I managed to hit 20 mph as I topped the little rise. It felt good.
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Old 07-26-08, 05:30 PM   #56
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Keep doing it. You'll get better!
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Old 07-27-08, 08:46 AM   #57
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Just an update, according to my Garmin Edge 305... the overall grade is 3.5%, but towards the end the grade reaches 6% for about 0.15 miles. Thats the part that really kills me, but yesterday I managed to do it while keeping my speed over 5mph... however I was in the granny ring and the largest rear cog.
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