Inverness Road

3rd category climbLength: 2.8km
Average gradient: 8.4%
Elevation gain: 234m

Views from the Inverness Road climb.

Just because a climb isn’t long doesn’t mean it won’t leave your leave your legs screaming by the end. At only 2.8km in length, Inverness Road would best be described by the phrase ‘short and sharp’. Starting at its intersection with York Road in Mt. Evelyn, Inverness Road winds its way painfully into the Dandenong Ranges National Park, joining up with the Mt. Dandenong Tourist Road a few kilometres downhill from Kalorama.

The start

Inverness Road intersects with York Road in the outer-eastern suburb of Mt. Evelyn and it is at this intersection that the climb begins. If you are timing your attempt up this climb, start your watch as soon as you are on Inverness Road.

Start of the Inverness Road climb.

The finish

The end of the Inverness Road climb is designated by the letters ‘KOM’ (King of the Mountain) written on the road in yellow paint, just before the road’s intersection with the Mt. Dandenong Tourist Road.

End of the Inverness Road climb.

At a glance

  • A short but sharp climb with a number of very steep sections.
  • Take care on the narrow section from 1.5km to 2.1km — it’s just wide enough for a car.
  • The last section of the climb is steepest — a nasty ramp approaching 20%.

Climb details

While Inverness Road’s average gradient of 8.5% can be daunting for any cyclist, the climb provides sections where you can sit up and rest before hitting the next pain-inducing pinch. From its beginning at the junction with York Road, Inverness Road starts gently enough but at the 500m mark things get a little more challenging with the road maintaining a painful incline until the sharp left-hand turn around a kilometre later.

As you swing around the bend, the road narrows into a single-lane affair, shared by traffic from both directions. Be sure to take extreme caution while ascending and descending this section of the road.

After around 1.7km of climbing the road flattens out for about half a kilometre, giving your legs a much needed rest. After the brief respite, the road kicks upward once again into a painful stretch in excess of 10% gradient before, unbelievably, ramping up further. This last section, just before the left-hand turn into the finishing stretch, is the steepest of the climb at a gradient of around 20%.


Inverness Road profile

This profile was created using Bike Route Toaster. To see the full version of this profile, complete with elevation details, click here.


Inverness Road can be accessed by the busy York Road and can be found around 1km to the east of the roundabout where York Road meets Swansea Road. If you are traveling east on York Road, Inverness Road is on the right hand side and is directly opposite the beige sign which reads ‘Kuranga Native Nursery & Paperbark Cafe – entrance 100m’.

If you are already in the Dandenong Ranges National Park Inverness Road is best accessed from the Mt. Dandenong Tourist Road, around 4km up the road from Montrose, or 2.6km down the road from Kalorama.


If you are keen to see how your time up Inverness Road compares to other cyclists, head over to Cycle2Max. The Strava segment for this climb can be found here.


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  1. garry / Nov 21 2015

    spare a thought for me, used to live at the bottom of it and had to climb straight up every ride. haha.

  2. David / Jan 4 2014

    Sure is steep this one. At one point my Garmin went into Autopause!

  3. Mark Barker / Mar 10 2013

    Can someone please explain the average gradient calculation. If you climb 174m and cycle a distance of 2800m then you get an average gradient of 6.2%. Even if you calculate the 2800m as a hypotenuse i.e the diagonal distance traveled (not the vertical) you get the the same 6.2% average gradient result.

    • Matt / Mar 13 2013

      Good spot Mark, that was a typo. It was meant to be 234m elevation gain. All fixed now. Thanks again!

  4. OldnSlow / Nov 17 2012

    Finally had a crack at this whilst completing the last leg of “The Crucifix” rides, I had a good chuckle at the first Left turn bend on the way up, there is the biggest Red sign “Reduce Speed”, at that point if I reduced speed I would have (A) Started rolling backwards or (B) Fallen Off….was hard work especially the last bit, the reward is excellent, I can now say I’ve done it.

    • Matt / Nov 17 2012

      Yeah, I get a good laugh out of that sign too. Always seems a bit ironic when you’re grinding away at less than 10km/h. 😛

  5. Darren / Apr 4 2012

    Hi Matt,

    This climb is a cracker. Did it today after 2 hrs of riding through the Dandenongs. Had to lean forward to stop the front wheel from coming off the tarmac. How does this bad boy compare to Terry’s Avenue? I got up Inverness with a 39/25. Am i kidding myself with Terrys and this gear ratio?

    cheers Darren

    • Matt / Apr 4 2012

      Good question, but hard to answer without knowing how strong you are! I got through Terrys Avenue with a 39/26 a few years ago (I’m stronger now) but only just. Terrys is a VERY tough climb.

      Do with that what you will 😛

  6. Neil / Jan 15 2012

    Great site! Did this for the first time today, I think an old lady with a walking frame passed me at one point I was going so slow, but good to reach the top

    • Matt / Jan 15 2012

      Cheers Neil. You’re right – it’s pretty steep at the end there!

  7. Madmike / Aug 17 2011

    Great climb this one, used to do it when it was a dirt rd a few years ago that was tough!

  8. Chris / Jul 9 2011

    Finally got round to punishing myself on this one, and punishment it is….that last 1km is extraordinary! At one point I’m pretty sure I went backwards!

  9. sean Mullins / Apr 4 2011

    Just completed this pain inducer today!
    Well described, having read the report I at least knew what I was letting myself in for. That last section is just crazy!

    • Matt / Apr 4 2011

      Thanks Sean. Great climb isn’t it? Short and sharp, no messing about. 🙂

Trackbacks and Pingbacks

  1. Mt. Baw Baw (Melbourne, Australia) | Mo's Cycling Blog
  2. Everesting: climbing 8,848 metres in a single ride | CyclingTips
  3. Return of The Natural and Inverness ITT « Classix Racing Team
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