Lacy Street

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Distance: 400 meters
Gradient: 17%
Maximum Gradient: 34%
Surface: Gravel
Traffic: local residents only

Here is a link to the Strava segment here:

For the mountain goats, this is one of the Dandenong Ranges best kept secrets. Most likely you have passed this climb many times.  It is situated on one of the Dandenong Ranges main arterial roads; Belgrave-Gembrook Road.  Sitting at the top of Selby’s most popular climb Selby Aura Road.

Lacy Street is a gravel road with gradients averaging close to 20% right from the start. The climb commences at the Charlotta Tye Memorial Church which is one of the Dandenong’s oldest churches.  At the top of the bend the road is paved, and you’ll wonder why they’ve paved only a fraction of the road.  You’ll will work out pretty quickly that the road is so steep that cars wouldn’t be able to get up it if it was dirt.  Much of the sealed section the gradient peaks above 30% and you will have to dig deep getting up this one! Your lungs will be on fire and your legs will be screaming at you to get off and walk. Good luck!

My first impression of Lacy Street was that it would be impossible to climb. Whenever I would take a rider to climb Selby Aura Road for the first time.  I point out the bonus climb at the top & have pretty much been told the same thing; “f@#k off I’m not climbing that thing!”.  It’s pretty damn hard and I wouldn’t put money on many getting to the top without walking.  Anyone who gives this one a go has my respect.

History

A narrow-gauge railway opened in in the area in 1900, and a station was erected in May 1904. The station required a name, and the name Selby was named after one of its landowners and councillors; George Selby. Selby’s close proximity to Belgrave ultimately attracted residential subdivisions.  A primary school was built in 1951 which helped with population growth.

The dirt track in the top right corner of this image is Lacy Street.  Image; State Library of Victoria

A Church was built from local stones in 1938 and was donated by Alan Tye to the All Saints Anglican Church as a memorial to his wife; Carlotta to whom the Church was named after.

On 13 January 1939 the Black Friday bushfires burned almost 20,000 km of land and destroyed several towns taking the lives of 71 people who perished in the fires. The Carlotta Tye Church offered sanctuary and was used as a refuge for women and children during the catastrophe.

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