Monumental Bergs: The Paterberg

Less than 6 kilometers down the road from last week’s feature climb the Koppenberg, lies another famous cobbled climb of the Flemish Ardennes; The Paterberg.

It’s another extremely tough climb with 46 meters of elevation change over 360 meters; relatively short yes, but its 12% average gradient and 20% maximum gradient over cobblestones means this is a true power climb.

The Paterberg was first included in the Ronde Van Vlaanderen in 1986 after cobblestones were laid in the previous year.
The Paterberg has always been a challenging climb as it typically follows only 3 kilometers after the Oude Kwaremont, and precedes other climbs such as the Kortekeer, Kruisberg, Hotond, and the Koppenberg.
In the upcoming 2012 edition of the Tour of Flanders the Oude Kwaremont and Paterberg pair will be raced three times; the first time at the beginning of a 37km circuit, followed by a 20km circuit, and finally 17 kilometers before the finish which means the Paterberg will be the crowning climb of the day!
The Paterberg is also raced in other Flemish classics races including the E3 Harelbeke and Dwars door Vlaanderen.

Enough Said, Take Me There!
The Paterberg is located in the municipality of Kluisbergen just outside the villages of Berchem and Kwaremont in East Flanders. You can see it here on Google Streetview, and if you’re up for it you can ride it via the Organge RVV loop.

But before you go here’s a few pointers to help make the best of it.

  • Take the corner (from the left or right) at the base of the climb hard, as you’ll lose momentum quickly if you take the turn too slowly.
  • Start in a relatively small gear, stay seated, and keep as much weight on your rear wheel.
  • There’s no best side to ride up if you intend to ride strictly on the cobbles, but if you need to there is a decent sized gutter on the left side of the road.
  • This is a short and hard climb, so the more power you can give the better.
  • The cobbles here are smoother and closer together than the Koppenberg so you should have less trouble getting to the top.
  • We also do not recommend riding down the Paterberg as it can be very tricky to maintain
    control of your bike riding downhill over cobblestones.

So that’s this weeks feature climb, hope it gives you the itch to get out here and ride it. You can join us in April if you like!
Check back next Monday to see what we’re climbing next!

3 thoughts on “Monumental Bergs: The Paterberg

  1. ed says:

    I seriously hope that the organizers place fencing on the gutters on the sides to eliminate guys from riding the smooth gutters. Will be more interesting and decisive
    if they all have to ride the cobbles.

    Just my two cents worth.



    • Holly says:

      Don’t worry Ed, they do place fencing along the gutters for the race!
      Indeed it would be less interesting and decisive if they were able to ride in the smooth gutters – but thankfully the gutter is there for those of us not racing it. That is except for the day of the sportive when the barriers will already be in place – though it tends to be more other riders preventing you from getting to the top on that day and not the cobbles.

  2. Pingback: Photos - 2012 Koppenberg Cross - The ChainStay » The ChainStay

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