Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Cycling the Palouse - Hangman Valley to Tower Mountain

View looking down into valley
Cycling the Palouse; I never tire of taking the bike out for a spin in the afternoon under the warm summer sun.  After 20 miles navigating the rolling Palouse, the five mile climb from the valley bottom at Hangman Valley Golf Course up to Tower Mountain was tackled before heading back to town.
Elevation Profile: Hangman Valley to Tower Mountain
The climb out of Hangman Valley to near the top of Tower is a nearly relentless push upwards over the entire five miles.  As seen from the map above, pitches in the last mile reach 22 percent!  That is a tough slog and quite steep especially when viewed at road level.  Temperatures in the mid 80s F add even a bigger challenge. 
Last two miles of the climb where the road ramps up.
Tower Mountain in background.
As seen from the map. the last three-quarters of a mile are the most difficult.  After climbing onto the lower approaches to the summit, the road makes a 90 degree left turn and heads seemingly straight up.  The steepness of the last ramp up cannot be accurately gauged from the photos.  The following photos snapped on the descent suggest the road is quite tranquil.  Looks are deceiving!  The climb leans toward violence rather than tranquility.      
On the descent 1
On the descent 2
On the descent 3
On the descent 4
On the descent 5
A tough five miles to end a ride but the views and satisfaction are worth the effort.  Temperatures will soon be relaxing into the fall so these climbs will be more pleasant.

12 comments:

  1. That's some big elevation gain for five miles. 22% those quads must be burning!

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    Replies
    1. I probably muttered, "shut up legs!" as I finished that last ramp to the summit.

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  2. NICE! I dream of five mile climbs. The biggest we have over here is 1.5 miles. Are you on Strava yet?

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    1. No Strava for me yet. Thanks for the reminder to look into it!

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  3. Nice looking ride. I brought my bike up last weekend and did a long ride on the trail towards Fishlake and Cheney. I am trying to get more miles in before the cold shuts me down in a few months.

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    1. Next time you bring your bike along, let me know. We can plan a ride. You can tackle this climb too!

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  4. Replies
    1. Thanks, Scott. Simply attempting to keep fit. The suffering is (usually) worth the effort.

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  5. Nobody can question your fitness! Well done and great views.

    Christopher

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  6. As a cyclist myself, I can appreciate the feat of this climb. I hope you were stopped when you took the descending photos!

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    1. Of course! I stopped along the road. My wife recently bought a go pro to mount on either helmet or bike. I need to work on that then I could take photos as I fly downhill. Her motive for the camera is for evidence when I am found alongside the road.

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