Climb Categorization

The Strava climb categorization is similar to how the UCI categorizes climbs but with some modifications. When a climb is categorized, for the Tour de France for example, there is a subjective component to the categorization. If a climb is at the end of the stage it could get a tougher category than if it was earlier in the stage. Strava's method is objective, so if a climb is a category 1 climb it will always be a category 1.

Determining Climb Categories

A segment can be categorized as a climb on Strava if it meets the following criteria:

  • The average gradient is at least 3.0%

  • The segment distance is at least 300 meters.

  • The length of the climb (in meters) multiplied by the grade of the climb is greater than 8,000.

You will see that a segment is categorized by the number on both the segment page and at the list of segments on your activity page. The categories are broken down as follows:

  • Cat 4 > 8000
  • Cat 3 > 16000
  • Cat 2 > 32000
  • Cat 1 > 64000
  • HC (Hors Categorie) > 80000

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