To climb hills on a bicycle, you need enough torque to fight gravity, which means finding the correct gear to keep up your RPMs.
A bigger gear has more torque, so 21-speed bikes like road bikes and some mountain bikes are the appropriate fit for terrain with lots of up and downhill areas. What is the best bicycle for hill climbing?
The Hiland Alliance 1.0 Aluminum Road Bike is the best bicycle for climbing hills because it has a fantastic 21-speed all-Shimano drivetrain. This superb bike comes in a couple of different variations and your choice of alternate wheels and frame geometry. Whichever option you choose, it will still shift smoothly and get you up those challenging hills easily.
To see all of my up-to-date recommendations for bikes and cycling gear, check out this resource that I made for you!
What Kind Of Bike Is Best For Climbing Hills
Road bikes are the best kind of bicycle for climbing hills. Most other styles have a more limited gar set, but a good, high-quality road bike is ideal for tackling a slope, thanks to all those geas.
The number of teeth on each gear determines how much torque the gear can handle, so a higher number means that the gear can handle more torque.
For example, if we compare a 10-speed bike with a 12-speed bike, the 10-speed has fewer teeth than the 12-speed.
According to CoachMag and professional cycling coach Matt Green, “The right gear enables you to find the right cadence – basically pedal revolutions per minute – which is particularly vital on climbs… “
You need a lot of torque for short, steep climbs, or you’ll simply fall off. When going up longer, steadier gradients, stay in the saddle and concentrate on that cadence target of 90-100rpm.”
3 Best Hill Climbing Bikes
There’s a difference between a long, low incline hill and short, steep hills, but the bikes that can handle slopes have a lot in common.
For example, you need more gears for going uphill. Unfortunately, there are a lot of 21-speed bikes available, and not all of them are good quality, so I’ve combed through hundreds of different options to narrow down the list.
Below are the top 3 best hill climbing bikes.
1 – Best MTB For Hill Climbing – (Schwinn High Timber Mountain Bike)
- Durable 12 inch steel frame is the perfect bike for rides around your neighborhood or trails. The 24-inch wheel frame fit riders 4’8” to 5’6” inches tall
- Bicycle comes with an alloy crank that provides steady gear changes that cause less maintenance
- Mountain bike has twist shifters with a rear derailleur to make gear changes quick and easy
- Wide knobby mountain tires sit on a lightweight and durable alloy wheel that adds stability and balance to the rider for all weather and terrain types
- Accessories that are included are quick release seat posts that make for a quick and easy adjustment
If you’re looking for the best MTB for hill climbing, I recommend the Schwinn High Timber Mountain Bike.
This great bicycle comes in a variety of sizes and fourteen colorways. More importantly, it’s made by Schwinn, a company that has been in business for over 130 years, producing excellent bikes.
You can see the quality in the thoughtful details like the metal-plate logo.
The durable alloy wheels sport a set of wide, knobby tires that can handle the terrain even when your hills get steep.
Meanwhile, the alloy crank is exceptionally durable and low maintenance so that you can focus on the ride. Pick out your favorite High Timber MTB by clicking the link.
2 – Best Road Bike For Hill Climbing – (Hiland Alliance 1.0 Aluminum Road Bike)
- 【Upgraded Choice】Alliance 1.0 is a road bike which combines the smooth, comfortable qualities of an advanced alloy frame with the performance of higher-quality parts. It features an upgraded drivetrain and disc brake for a fast road bike perfect for miles of fun, fast riding on pavement ,even for club rides or races.
- 【Shimano Drivetrain】The road bike has a upgraded Shimano 21 speed shifter and derailleaur has a wide range of gears for riding on any terrain.You want to invest in higher-quality performance parts that will keep pace with you as you continue to hone your road cycling skills.
- 【Fit Various Routes】28C tire not only help you fast riding on flat roads, but also be stable on slightly gravel roads. It has a lower rolling resistance than wider tires, and it is slightly larger than 25C with more cushioning, more resistance to pinch-flats.
- 【Assembly Guide】Hiland road bike is 85% pre-assembled and easy to assemble within 25 minutes. The delivery box include free installation tools and pedals WITHOUT kickstand. Assembly tutorial video located beside the images.
- 【Size Guide & Warranty】Size M suitable for rider height 5'4''-5'9''. Size L suitable for rider height 5'7''-6'1''. Like every Hiland, it's backed by a limited lifetime warranty. So if you have any question about bike, Please do not hesitate to contact us.
Not only is the Hiland Alliance 1.0 from Amazon the best road bike for climbing hills, but it’s the best all-around climbing bike I can recommend.
With its lower rolling resistance, the Alliance is fantastic for paved roads, but it can also handle a little bit of gravel when the occasion presents itself.
Remarkable stability, low weight, and a Shimano 21-speed drivetrain make this bike my choice for top hill climber.
The Hiland Alliance 1.0 also arrives 85% assembled with all the tools you need to put it together so you can spend your time on those hills rather than an overcomplicated assembly manual.
Best of all, you get a limited lifetime warranty, so you can cycle worry-free, knowing any manufacturer defects are fully covered.
You can order an Alliance 1.0 delivered to your door fast by clicking the link.
3 – Best Bicycle For Steep Hills – (EUROBIKE OBK XC550 Road Bike)
- Brake System】Provides a stronger, faster, more reliable stopping power than the traditional V-Brake Systems; Disc brakes also do not wear out your tires and last much longer; Since disc brakes are much more consistent you’ll be able to judge braking more accurately.Front and rear daul disc brakes make brakes more sensitive
- 【700C Tires】It takes less energy to keep the bike at speed. 700c wheels have less rolling resistance, making them more efficient, you can ride further using the same amount of energy.
- 【Shimano Gears】Shimano 21-speed shifter combo with brake lever provides quick gear changes.Shimano 21-speed shifter combo with brake lever provides quick gear changes..21 speed makes the speed change more smoothly
- 【Frame】 The geometry of the frame is designed with professional competition grade geometry,more ergonomic, so you can ride more smoothly.49cm and 54cm frame for different height.Please read our recommended height carefully before purchase, and then choose the correct size, thank you
- 【Easy assembly】The bicycle is 85% assembled, you just need to install the front fork, front wheel, seat and pedal under the guidance of instructions and then air up the tire. It is easy for you to finish it in 15-25 minutes.Careful after-sales service makes you worry-free after-sales
The sleek design of the Eurobike OBK XC550 Road Bike helps it tackle steep hills. The 3-spoke wheel design helps reduce wind resistance by removing all those tiny metal air-catching spokes.
Meanwhile, the 21-speed drivetrain allows you to adjust your torque based on the grade of the incline ahead.
You can choose from two different versatile frame sizes for the best fit. Dual disc brakes make it as simple to go back down the hill as it was to ascend.
Plus, you’ll appreciate the excellent after-sales service if you have any questions or concerns. Click the link to grab this great hill climber while it’s in stock.
Best Bicycle For Hill Climbing Buyers Guide
To get the best bicycle for hill climbing, you mostly need to look at the gears and brakes. However, it’s also vital to consider bike weight and the type of trails or roads in your area.
I’ve put together a quick and straightforward buyers guide to help you understand what to look for.
1 – Gears Are Everything
Bikes can have any number of gears from none to 21. However, it would be best if you don’t settle for anything less than a 21-speed bike if you need to tackle hills.
The more gears you have, the easier it will be to adjust your torque to suit the incline of your terrain and maintain your RPMs.
In general, I recommend looking for Shimano drivetrain parts, and always remember to check the reviews for any concerns about gearing issues or chain slippage.
2 – Check Your Brakes
Getting up a hill is only half of the trip. Although the upslope is the more challenging part of your journey, descending is the more dangerous portion. You need high-quality brakes to get home safe again.
Unless you plan to have a car waiting at the top of every hill, your brake quality should match your bike and gear quality.
It would be best to have your brakes serviced every 6 months or 2,000 miles.
Additionally, you should check your whole bike over before every ride and clean your brakes and bike chain weekly if you ride regularly.
3 – When Do You Need A Road Bike
Your road bike has a large gear ratio and high-quality tires. It’s durable and easy to maintain, so this is a good choice for people who live in areas where they need to travel long distances.
Additionally, road bikes are lightweight, so you aren’t trying to move more weight up a hill.
Pushing on pedals is taxing, and every pound you add to your bike frame means spending more energy to get up the slope.
If you are riding on paved roads, there’s no easier way to get up hills than on a road bike.
Although this style isn’t great for leisure riding and comfort, the pure sport of tackling inclined paved trails, hilly city streets, or mountain roads is where a road bike shows its worth.
So long as this thin wheeled, smooth tread patterned bike type doesn’t need to travel over dirt, you probably want a road bike for your hills.
4 – When Do You Need A Mountain Bike
Not all hills are created equal. A mountain bike has a low center of gravity and is designed to handle rugged terrain.
If you’re looking for something that can take you off-road, this is the right bike.
The wheels are broader and have a different tread pattern that makes room for dirt, rocks, and some gravel as you move.
The treads offer traction and prevent you from slipping. Moreover, the durable frame can easily handle rugged trails, some jumps, and a more uneven up-and-down environment.
Helpful Tips To Know About The Best Bicycle For Hill Climbing
Choosing the best bicycle for hill climbing is all about the gears, though having less frame weight to hold you back also helps.
Unless you plan to travel uphill on dirt trails, your best bike will always be a road bike.
Here are more helpful tips to know about the best bicycle for hill climbing.
- Pedaling motion causes the bicycle to move forward. To make this happen, we need to apply force to the pedals. Force is the push or pull that moves something, like a bike. Going uphill is more problematic due to gravity, friction, and energy loss. Choosing a different gear by shifting helps increase or decrease the resistance, which puts more energy into that pushing motion from pedaling and makes it a little easier.
- Gears are essential to hill climbing because they transmit power. However, bicycle gears have two different types: internal and external. Internal gears use teeth that mesh together inside the hub of the bicycle wheel, and external gears use teeth that mesh outside the rim of the bicycle wheel. As Where The Road Forks explains, “Internal gear hubs are slightly less mechanically efficient than derailleurs. I have read figures ranging from 2% to 10% less efficient depending on the model. This loss of efficiency happens because the power that you produce by pedaling must pass through multiple gears. You lose a bit of energy each time the power transfers from one gear to another.” That means the more accessible internal gear bikes are not good hill climbers.
- There is a third option for those who cannot handle the upslopes. Regardless of whether it’s a fitness level or physical issue, you can get a bicycle that helps more with climbing. A pedal-assisted ebike can give you the boost you need while still allowing you to build muscle and stay healthy.
The first time you try and tackle a hill on a bicycle, it usually feels overwhelming. It’s worse if you have limited gears or don’t understand how to use them.
Fortunately, you can conquer any hill with the right bike and enough gears to have the torque you need.
Choosing the best bicycle for hill climbing doesn’t need to be tricky. All you need is the right high-quality bike from a good company with 21-speeds and excellent brakes.