Blue Climbs

Blue Climbs (Moderate)

All climbs are equal, but some climbs are more equal than others!

LOCATION DISTANCE AVERAGE
The Byne 4.5km 3.7%
Blackies Brae 4.7km 3.9%
Glenalla (Cloyntie) 7.0km 3.4%
Tairlaw Summit 8.6km 3.3%
Tairlaw (Shalloch) 4.0km 4.3%

Blackie’s Brae

  • Distance: 4.7km
  • Elevation: 175m (-25m)
  • Max Gradient: 9.8%
  • Average: 3.9%

Named after after a local cycling club member who came to mischief at the base of this climb, Blackies Brae is itself a mischievous climb. With crisp conditions you will sail to the summit. With an unfavourable wind though you will wince through each metre of ascent.

Whatever the weather though, it will be worth it. From the summit you get to enjoy the sheer exhilaration of descending the Screws!

The Byne

  • Distance: 4.5km
  • Elevation: 154m
  • Max Gradient: 10.4%
  • Average: 3.7%

The fastest climb in all the Ayrshire Alps? You bet! Its a monster power romp up kilometres of smooth steady gradient. Find your rhythm and it’s an absolute joy. Just ask the riders of the former Girvan 3-Day Stage Race who tackled the hill multiple times on route to glory.

Glenalla (Cloyntie)

  • Distance: 7km
  • Elevation: 284m
  • Max Gradient: 14.1%
  • Average: 3.4%

Once you are out the treeline, Glenalla is a joy. A fast ascent with a strong tail wind will blow you ever higher. But getting here is a long slog. After the sawmill by Cloyntie the road rises steeply, but eventually this abates and as the road switches back on itself you get a marvellous view across to Maybole, the Carrick Hills and beyond.

But be warned, there is a wee plot twist at the end!

Tairlaw Summit

  • Distance: 8.6km
  • Elevation: 316m
  • Max Gradient: 11.8%
  • Average: 3.3%

Before you approach Tairlaw, ensure you have refueled at Straiton: this is a long 8km. The road starts steep before settling down into a steady slog up through the Carrick Forest. Once you reach Stinchar Bridge you lose the shelter of the tree line, but instead are met with the majestic views over the moor tops of the Ayrshire Alps.

Fancy a diversion? Take a visit to the Carrick Forest Drive at Stinchar Bridge and check out the strada grigio – Scotland’s answer to L’Eroica.

Tairlaw (Shalloch)

  • Distance: 4.0km
  • Elevation: 156m
  • Max Gradient: 7.6%
  • Average: 4.3%

If you have come this far, chances are you have already climbed the Nic O Balloch. Relax, this is a dawdle in comparison. The only challenge with this climb up the spine of Rig Of Shalloch is its seeming never-endingness. No matter how well you know the road, the summit likes to tease you as it always hides ‘behind the next corner’!