Trooperstown Hill (1.9km, 146m, 7.5%)

Map and elevation profile of Trooperstown Hill climb


At the time of writing, a mere 255 riders have ridden this segment on Strava, as compared to just shy of 10,000 for Wicklow Gap, so I feel confident in describing it as a hidden gem. You can find steeper, longer climbs on the west coast (Caherdaniel, may you live in infamy!) but there aren’t many other climbs in Wicklow that compare — Devil’s Glen, perhaps.

The headline numbers for the climb undersell it considerably. The gentle rise along the first kilometre from Bookey Bridge reduces the average gradient to an innocuous-seeming 7.5%, but the 900 meters after the turn average a very respectable 11% and the final ramp hits 18%. There are moments where the road appears to flatten but recovery is not easily come by — they’re still 8–9%.

The surface is heavy and there isn’t much to look at on the way up (you’ll be too busy trying to keep your front wheel planted anyway) but the views from the shoulder of the hill and the gradual descent on the other side are delightful.

Rough country road lined with hedgerows rising steeply to a left-hand bend
The final ramp. To quote Alice Cooper, “I’m eighteen…and I like it”

Thoughts, hopes, exhortations?