Average gradient: 7.5%
Elevation gain: 241m
There aren’t too many flat roads around the town of Beechworth in Victoria’s high country and Buckland Road is no exception. Even though the Buckland Gap climb takes the most gentle route up through the hills towards Beechworth, the climb is anything but easy with a final 2.4km-long section that averages 8.7%.
The Buckland Gap climb starts on the Buckland Gap Road 6.5km north of the Great Alpine Road at a noticeable dip in the road. The start can be found just past the beginning of a line of trees on the left-hand side of the road, a few hundred metres past Ellen Track on the right if you’re coming from the Great Alpine Road.
The Buckland Gap climb ends at the big carpark between Fighting Gully Road on the left and Lady Newton Drive on the right.
At a glance
- A short but tough climb that starts easily enough but kicks up sharply and doesn’t ease off.
- The first 800m section of the climb has an average gradient of 4%.
- The final 2.4km of the climb has an average gradient of 8.7%.
The Buckland Gap climb starts with farmland on the left-hand side of the road and the hill you’re about to climb directly ahead. The first 700m of the climb are dead straight with an average gradient of around 5% — a gentle start compared with the tough final section of the climb.
After 700m the road bends around to the left before straightening out and flattening off briefly 100m later. This is the only flat part of the climb and from this point the road kicks up to around 8-9% and doesn’t really let up. After 1.1km of climbing you’ll pass Lee Morrison Road on the left and 300m later you’ll reach only the second bend in 1.4km of climbing.
In comparison with the straight first 1.4km, the final 1.8km of the climb are very windy as the road snakes its way up the hill. After 1.9km the gradient is still around 8-9% and you’re well away from the farmland that welcomed you at the bottom of the climb.
From here the road continues to wind its way up the hill at around 8-9%, taking in a sweeping right-hander after 2.8km. From here the road is straight but steep for the final 400m, with the summit found just past Fighting Gully Road on the left and just before Lady Newton Drive on the right.
The Buckland Gap is one of many climbs in the area surrounding the town of Beechworth in Victoria’s high country, roughly 285km north east of Melbourne. The top of the climb is roughly 6km south of Beechworth along Buckland Road with the start of the climb a further 3.2km south.
As mentioned above, the climb starts roughly 6.5km north of the intersection of Buckland Road and the Great Alpine Road, the latter being the main conduit between the Hume Freeway (which links Melbourne and Sydney) and other towns in the Victorian Alps, including the regional centre of Bright.
If you’d like to see how your effort up the Buckland Gap compares to times set by other riders, check out the Strava segment.