Just how hard is this ride?

Below is a table of routes used recently showing the approximate amount of climbing as determined by RideWithGPS. See footnote below. This chart should give riders a rough idea of a difficulty of different routes but take it with a BIG grain of salt — average climbing is only one element of a ride’s difficulty and can be deceptive.

Note that climbing is based on the actual distance, not the “advertised” distance. Generally rides are 2-10 miles longer than the advertised (200k, 300k, etc) distance.

Route NameLengthStart LocationFt/MileTotal (Ft)
Dighton Rock (MA 200k 2015)200kBedford, MA36.94659
Overnight 200k200kLexington, MA41.65230
Trails of Groton100kMedford, MA42.62802
Boneyard 100k100kWestford, MA44.02933
Boston-Montreal-Boston1200kNewton, MA48.636204
Sterling Populaire107kBedford, MA48.83322
Meredith 400k400kBedford, MA49.312548
Voluntown, CT 300k300kBedford, MA52.09792
North Country (VT 600k 2015)600kMontpelier, VT52.419864
Oh Canada! (VT 400k 2015)400kWoodstock, VT52.513188
Green Mountain (VT 200k 2015)200kMiddlesex, VT53.06715
New Boston (MA 200k 2014)200kBedford, MA53.96873
Williamstown (MA 600k 2015)600kBedford, MA54.920747
Sunderland (MA 300k 2015)300kBedford, MA56.910984
Montpelier 400k (VT 400k 2014)400kMontpelier, VT58.214473
Downeast 1000k1000kMontpelier, VT58.237401
Tweedo's Revenge200kBedford, MA61.37729
Gilette Castle* (MA 400k 2015)400kBedford, MA64.716769
Fall Classic 110k110kMontpelier, VT72.84974
Northeast Kingdom (VT 300k 2015)300kMontpelier, VT73.013959
Piedmont Populaire100kMontpelier, VT73.84659
Fall Classic 200k200kMontpelier, VT86.310712
Goose Green200kMontpelier, VT100.012831

* It has been noted that RWGPS appears to have overstated the hills of this ride as some rider’s GPSs log closer to 13,500 ft of climbing. Differences like this are common; generally mapping applications overestimate elevation, occasionally by a high margin. (Mapping software calculates based on the concours of the soil and won’t take into account bridges and road cut-outs which would significantly save on climbing.)

Simply put, the table should be seen as a extremely rough guide to difficultly. For example, an out-and-back 300k with a smooth 3% incline for 1/2 the distance and a 3% decline on the return would appear to be difficult with 15,000+ ft of climbing (81.3 ft/mile) yet most would consider it a nearly flat and easy route.