Mt Cootha first time for beginner

Mt Cootha first time for beginner

Postby spirro » Fri Nov 22, 2013 7:00 am

Hi all

I'm wanting to have a crack at Mt Cootha one weekend. I've never ridden it before and to be honest, not great on big hills. What advice would you give to a beginner riding Cootha for the first time?

Thanks
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by BNA » Fri Nov 22, 2013 8:32 am

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Re: Mt Cootha first time for beginner

Postby cancan64 » Fri Nov 22, 2013 8:32 am

I have done it twice now and with a 3rd go tomorrow morning,I am also not good on hills and I reckon the car drivers would hear me gasping for air. I rode the back route via Simpson Rd....

First time I passed heaps of people and thought this was easy followed by when will it end as recently passed people passed me followed by thank god I am at the top followed by crap there is more climbing followed by hoorah I am going down followed by crap the garmin locked up

second time was better, I started off a lot slower, still struggled near the end but I had more of an idea where the end was

I havent worked out tomorrows plan of attack yet, maybe start off a bit harder but then back off in the middle and hopefully be able to pick it up near the end

Thinking about my first ride, I should have taken it a lot easier to get an idea of the distance and the layout...still glad that I didnt stop which did cross my mind a few times

Also have a read of this thread
http://www.bicycles.net.au/forums/viewtopic.php?f=43&t=41658&p=1019084&hilit=mt+cootha#p1019084
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Mt Cootha first time for beginner

Postby RonK » Fri Nov 22, 2013 8:52 am

First time go the front way, i.e. clockwise. The first climb near the gardens is the hardest.

Don't charge at it. Pick a low gear and find your climbing rhythm. Stay below your aerobic threshold. Change up as the grade eases.
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Re: Mt Cootha first time for beginner

Postby clydesmcdale » Fri Nov 22, 2013 9:04 am

Front way is definitely easier. Give that a go first. I'm not made for hills, but enjoy the challenge. I just pick a nice steady comfortable cadence and stick to it the whole way and try not to be tempted to increase speed when I get to the easier sections. Otherwise I burn out when the gradient increases again. Once I know the hill I vary pace as needed, but mostly get best result from being steady.

First time I did the back I went way too fast in the first 500m thinking it was relatively easy. Bonked about 3/4 of the way up and struggled to the top. Looked back at my Strava and I had the fastest first 500m of everyone I follow, to then finish slowest by a long way.
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Re: Mt Cootha first time for beginner

Postby jasonc » Fri Nov 22, 2013 9:30 am

you could always get there via bardon - the bontannical gardens climb is steeper than the back climb of coot-tha
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Re: Mt Cootha first time for beginner

Postby Angus » Fri Nov 22, 2013 9:46 am

If you haven't done much climbing before have a few gos at the front and Mt Gravatt first. They have an easier gradient than back of Coot-tha. When you do the back the first time, the steepest section is at about the 2/3 mark, leave a bit of juice in the legs for that.
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Re: Mt Cootha first time for beginner

Postby elantra » Fri Nov 22, 2013 10:02 am

RonK wrote:First time go the front way, i.e. clockwise. The first climb near the gardens is the hardest.
Don't charge at it. Pick a low gear and find your climbing rhythm. Stay below your aerobic threshold. Change up as the grade eases.
Definitely +
Jasonc wrote : you could always get there via bardon - the bontannical gardens climb is steeper than the back climb of coot-tha

Yes. the botanical gardens climb is very tedious.
Much nicer to approach the main game (either front or back climbs) via Bardon.
For the front way up as has been recommended in previous posts, approach via Bardon (Simpsons Road)
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Re: Mt Cootha first time for beginner

Postby marinmomma » Fri Nov 22, 2013 10:08 am

If you can try Mt Gravatt a few times before tackling Coot-Tha, Mt G is only slightly shorter than Mt C but overall gradient is way less.
Agree with going the front way first, if you can come around from Simpsons Rd you will avoid the climb up past the gardens.

Tomorrow will be a busy day at Coot-Tha with the Project Declan rides happening, could be good or not depending on whether you want bigger crowds than usual.

It's always good to go early before the bulk of the cars start heading up.
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Re: Mt Cootha first time for beginner

Postby winstonw » Fri Nov 22, 2013 10:11 am

depends how bad you are at climbing. if really bad, suggest you drive it first and get a clear idea of length and gradient.
you also want to test your gears on shorter climbs. if 39:25 is your lowest gear, you struggle more than you bargained for.
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Re: Mt Cootha first time for beginner

Postby jasonc » Fri Nov 22, 2013 10:11 am

marinmomma wrote:It's always good to go early before the bulk of the cars start heading up.


yeah they slow me down
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Re: Mt Cootha first time for beginner

Postby marinmomma » Fri Nov 22, 2013 10:20 am

jasonc wrote:
marinmomma wrote:It's always good to go early before the bulk of the cars start heading up.


yeah they slow me down


Haha, for the rest of us mere mortals we appreciate having to struggle up the bloody thing without having to deal with the bogan car drivers as well...
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Re: Mt Cootha first time for beginner

Postby marinmomma » Fri Nov 22, 2013 10:24 am

winstonw wrote:depends how bad you are at climbing. if really bad, suggest you drive it first and get a clear idea of length and gradient.
you also want to test your gears on shorter climbs. if 39:25 is your lowest gear, you struggle more than you bargained for.


I say no to driving up any climb before riding up it...I think that a climb looks way worse when driving it in a car.

I do agree re testing out the gearing first though, if you can't do Mt Gravatt with what you currently run then you won't get up the back of Coot-Tha.
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Re: Mt Cootha first time for beginner

Postby spirro » Fri Nov 22, 2013 10:56 am

Thanks for the tips guys.

I live on the north side so Mt Gravatt is not really an option for me.

My bike has a 12x28 cassette and 30/39/50 crank. Not sure what that means for climbing Cootha.

I was going to enter from Coro drive and up Sylvan Rd.



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Re: Mt Cootha first time for beginner

Postby jasonc » Fri Nov 22, 2013 11:04 am

spirro wrote:My bike has a 12x28 cassette and 30/39/50 crank. Not sure what that means for climbing Cootha.

LOTS of gears

I was going to enter from Coro drive and up Sylvan Rd.


that means going via the botannical gardens
what people are suggesting is taking the route via paddington/bardon along LaTrobe terrace which is easier
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Re: Mt Cootha first time for beginner

Postby Ryanhyltoncummins » Fri Nov 22, 2013 3:50 pm

I feel like the back is much easier, but that's due to not doing that climb past the planetarium i can never pace myself well enough
my first time i had to stop after it to get my breath back
coming via Ithaca creek or enoggerra bikeway's would skip that section out and be much nicer on your legs if you haven't done gravatt (it's only about 15-20 minutes from the city if you take the v1) plus its got a few different climbs around the area as well like tooheys hill on the bikeway (1.1km (AT) 4%) and the uni ring road (1.2km (AT) 4%) its worth checking out for sure. Those are what i first began to climb on before hitting bigger climbs.
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Re: Mt Cootha first time for beginner

Postby marinmomma » Sat Nov 23, 2013 10:59 am

spirro wrote:Thanks for the tips guys.

I live on the north side so Mt Gravatt is not really an option for me.

My bike has a 12x28 cassette and 30/39/50 crank. Not sure what that means for climbing Cootha.

I was going to enter from Coro drive and up Sylvan Rd.



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With a triple you should be fine to get up Coot-tha, good luck and let us know how you go when you eventually tackle it :)

As said above Mt Gravatt isnt too difficult to get to from the city, the legs will be nicely warmed up with an easy roll out 8)
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Re: Mt Cootha first time for beginner

Postby koen » Sat Nov 23, 2013 12:42 pm

The only thing I would add is that strength for climbing and technique are closely related and there can be a sharp improvement if you persevere. Whereas an overall fitness improvement from training may take many weeks if you have some base fitness and can struggle up Mt Cootha once or twice a week you will probably find by the third week it is seeming much better. Unless you go for the 30/28 combination and go very slow it will always hurt the legs though. Part of the technique is just reinterpreting the 'pain' in the thighs.
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Re: Mt Cootha first time for beginner

Postby poohkies » Mon Nov 25, 2013 8:21 pm

I rode up the backside for the first time on Sunday, was fun to say the least, only part I stressed about was coming down the front, was dragging my brakes most the way to try and slow down, when they started screaming sound I backed them off, hit 80km/h at on point! Never shat my self so much!
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Re: Mt Cootha first time for beginner

Postby jasonc » Mon Nov 25, 2013 8:37 pm

the front descent is pretty simple. but taking it easy on the first attempt is a good idea
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Re: Mt Cootha first time for beginner

Postby poohkies » Mon Nov 25, 2013 8:50 pm

Hopefully it'll get easier the next time :)
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Re: Mt Cootha first time for beginner

Postby spirro » Wed Nov 27, 2013 1:33 pm

poohkies wrote:I rode up the backside for the first time on Sunday, was fun to say the least, only part I stressed about was coming down the front, was dragging my brakes most the way to try and slow down, when they started screaming sound I backed them off, hit 80km/h at on point! Never shat my self so much!


Good on you poohkies, just wondering how you found the climb? Are you much of a climber? Did you go from the bottom passed Botanical Gardens or the Bardon end?
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Re: Mt Cootha first time for beginner

Postby RonK » Wed Nov 27, 2013 2:04 pm

poohkies wrote:I rode up the backside for the first time on Sunday, was fun to say the least, only part I stressed about was coming down the front, was dragging my brakes most the way to try and slow down, when they started screaming sound I backed them off, hit 80km/h at on point! Never shat my self so much!

You need to use pulse braking...
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Re: Mt Cootha first time for beginner

Postby Comedian » Wed Nov 27, 2013 3:01 pm

poohkies wrote:I rode up the backside for the first time on Sunday, was fun to say the least, only part I stressed about was coming down the front, was dragging my brakes most the way to try and slow down, when they started screaming sound I backed them off, hit 80km/h at on point! Never shat my self so much!


You took it up the backside the first time? 8o

When going down the front the classic newby mistake is to break all the way down. Just sit right up and let the breeze slow you. Do all your breaking in the last few hundred metres on cold and fresh brakes. ;)
Once you can climb hills on a bike it's all downhill. :mrgreen:

Hopefully I'll know what that's like..... one day. :shock: :lol:

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Re: Mt Cootha first time for beginner

Postby jasonc » Wed Nov 27, 2013 3:21 pm

Comedian wrote:
poohkies wrote:I rode up the backside for the first time on Sunday, was fun to say the least, only part I stressed about was coming down the front, was dragging my brakes most the way to try and slow down, when they started screaming sound I backed them off, hit 80km/h at on point! Never shat my self so much!


You took it up the backside the first time? 8o

When going down the front the classic newby mistake is to break all the way down. Just sit right up and let the breeze slow you. Do all your breaking in the last few hundred metres on cold and fresh brakes. ;)


what?
just slam on the brakes when you get to the brake marker signs:

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Re: Mt Cootha first time for beginner

Postby spirro » Wed Nov 27, 2013 4:14 pm

Are there no bike lanes on Cootha?


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