Over a distance of eight kilometres (five miles), the line climbs around a hundred metres (280 feet) to reach Maron, meaning a gradient of 1:75 and a severe test for engines on the North Western Railway.
Bankers are often required to help trains up the hill. However, they run the risk of being chased by a runaway train or rear ending the train they are helping - something Duck found out the hard way once with Edward and once with Henry.
When the railway was first built, this stretch was made even more difficult by strong winds blown in by the sea. This was attempted to be countered by the planting of trees on either side of the line, but in autumn there can be the additional risk of slippery leaves on the line, as James discovered on two occasions.
- Gordon's Hill is based on "Lickey Incline" near King's Norton station on the Great Western Railway.
- Whilst it is probably a coincidence, there is a real place in London called "Gordon Hill".
- While the occasional accidents/events have happened on the hill, it has been the starting place for countless runaway trains, with either couplings breaking or an engine has faulty brakes.
- Gordon's Hill has had several modifications to the set and CGI model:
- Between the first season and the seventh season; The incline was curved and single sided (with Wellsworths at the bottom and Maron at the top).
- Since the eighth season the rails on the hill became straight with the track being curved at the bottom of the hill. The bridge at the bottom also disappeared.
- Only in Thomas and the Golden Eagle, there was a road leading to the top of the hill.
- Since the CGI cross over, it becomes double sided and much steeper and there appears to be two models of the hill. On one version, the ocean could be seen on the curved rail side and the other model has the ocean on the straight rail side.
- Only in Big Belle, the hill was much taller and steeper than usual.
- Only in King of the Railway, there is a junction on the other side that goes to Ulfstead Castle.