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~Reformed Mechanic~
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Im planning a biking trip to NC, Raleigh area (Im staying) and I know of many common trails. Im specifically looking for the best biking in NC though. Im taking the trip to only bike and Id describe myself somewhere between an advanced and expert rider, so the harder the better. Any mountain or long descending trails anyone can recommend?

Thanks!
 

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ready to ride
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Then you are going to the wrong place ace. All the best trails are In western NC which is about 4 hours from Raliegh.

I'd make Asheville or Brevard my home base. The best trails are in Pisgah national forest. Most towards Brevard. There are also some good ones North of Asheville and also towards Boone.
No particular order.
Farllow Gap
Claw hammer
Laurel Mountain
Rocky knob park in Boone
Coleman
The list goes on and on. Search this forum and the trail guide here and on single track will give you a lot of info. Biking Western NC is a decent book that gives you routes etc.

Then there is always bent creek and du pont. Not really expert trails but some fun rides none the less.
 

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~Reformed Mechanic~
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Discussion Starter #4
Awesome, Yeah from what Ive been reading west NC is the place to go (which is fine) Im staying near Raleigh with my bud but likely jut take a two day trip to west NC for the riding...

I dont need to ride expert trails only but my point is that Im wanting to do some real serious biking. 20 miles of trail isn't much to me, (depending on difficulty though)...

Thanks for the feedback, if anyone else wants to contribute some really fun trails anywhere around NC would be great!
 

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~Reformed Mechanic~
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Discussion Starter #7
These might give you some ideas. Can string together several to make a long ride.
Pisgah Area SORBA » Rides

http://forums.mtbr.com/north-south-carolina/2012-pmbar-routes-787614.html

Not sure where you are used to riding but Pisgah miles can be like dog years. Not all though. Some you can do 20 miles in a couple of hours, others 20 miles can take you a good part of the day.
Thanks for the feedback guys, I see listed on Pisgah Area SORBA trails skill levels listed. Can anyone who actually have ridden these trails help me understand the skill levels? They are listed as Intermediate, epic, Epic Death March, Advanced etc...

Are we looking at least 6" travel for epic or above type stuff? I mean... I ride the double black diamonds easily around here BUT... I live in FL... so... ya...
 

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Big Mac
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Thanks for the feedback guys, I see listed on Pisgah Area SORBA trails skill levels listed. Can anyone who actually have ridden these trails help me understand the skill levels? They are listed as Intermediate, epic, Epic Death March, Advanced etc...

Are we looking at least 6" travel for epic or above type stuff? I mean... I ride the double black diamonds easily around here BUT... I live in FL... so... ya...
There is a lot of info on this board about your situation. Do a search With all due respect, just come and ride. You're the only one who knows what you can and can't do. Go forth, young man. And form your own opinions.
 

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~Reformed Mechanic~
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Discussion Starter #9
There is a lot of info on this board about your situation. Do a search With all due respect, just come and ride. You're the only one who knows what you can and can't do. Go forth, young man. And form your own opinions.
While I see what your getting at, Im not going alone... Im bringing some less experienced riders with me and Its kind of on me to make sure Im not going to put anyone in danger or on trails they cannot handle...
 

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drunken pirate
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You do not need at least 6" travel for anything in Pisgah. That much travel might make it more comfortable or faster going down but is far from necessary. Plenty of people ride hardtails and some ride fully rigid. I'd pay little attention to those skill levels listed on the PAS site but keep in mind that Pisgah is mountainous terrain and you will spend most of your time climbing - either on gravel roads or singletrack. Then you will be rewarded with downhills that will scare you, thrill you, force you to walk some and make you dream of coming back for more.

Ride Laurel Mtn to Pilot Rock on your first day and then stop in at the Hub in Pisgah Forest for a beverage and recommendations for other good rides in the area. It is all good :D.

EDIT: You aren't going to be putting anyone in 'danger' - if you can't ride what is in front of you get off and walk. Everyone has to dismount and walk in Pisgah. It is part of the game.
 

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If you want long descending and you're coming in from Raleigh, you must not miss Heartbreak Ridge.Start/Finish is just outside Old Fort. You're looking at a 3-4 hour climb and close to an hour of descending. Except for the last 20 feet, the descent is never too technical.

You can also throw in a bonus loop of Kitsuma.
 

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~Reformed Mechanic~
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Discussion Starter #12
If you want long descending and you're coming in from Raleigh, you must not miss Heartbreak Ridge.Start/Finish is just outside Old Fort. You're looking at a 3-4 hour climb and close to an hour of descending. Except for the last 20 feet, the descent is never too technical.

You can also throw in a bonus loop of Kitsuma.
Thanks, Ill check it out! Is there a shorter way to the top or is it necessary to climb the 4 hours?
 

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I'm not aware of a shorter way to the top. However, you can park in Montreat instead of Old Fort and miss the steepest part of the climb. This option also splits the climb into two sections meaning you climb, descend, and then finish with a long gravel road climb as opposed to one long all-encompassing climb and one long descent if you park outside Old Fort.

If you're concerned about the length of the Heartbreak climb, Kitsuma might be a good option. It's also a long descent and then the climb back up is on a gated paved road through mostly National Forest. The trailhead is literally 10 feet off I-40 just before Black Mountain. Total ride time for Kitsuma even at a flatlander pace :) should be no more than 2 hours.
 

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286 Best in Raleigh

I'd have to say the best in Raleigh would be 286. This trail has climbs, downhill runs, and lots of jumps(the big ramp at the Front half is Awesome). And its constantly being worked on. Lots of different routes to take so you can go as long as you want without getting bored.

:thumbsup:
 

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While I see what your getting at, Im not going alone... Im bringing some less experienced riders with me and Its kind of on me to make sure Im not going to put anyone in danger or on trails they cannot handle...
Hey man - think I know you from the SC forum.

Kitsuma would be a good stop on the way into town - you'll have to drive about 20ft from its parking lot. There's ways to do it that skip the 4mi of pavement and add some gravel road instead, and you can tack on some out/back on the bottom of Heartbreak if your 'less experienced' folks don't want to do the full epic.

Pisgah is definitely where all the big fun is, but for a mixed group, Bent Creek is underrated. It's not the 'full Pisgah' experience, but everyone's going to climb, descend, and grin.

Let me know if you all need a guide and I'll see what my schedule looks like. If the folks coming with you are from Raleigh too, I may just know them - lived there for 5 years.
 

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As a Florida rider who has ridden wnc, there's nothing in Florida to prepare you for all the climbing you'll be doing. Everything seems to be up then up some more.

I'd definitely hit up dupont to get your feet wet in wnc. The lake imaging and corn mill shoals trailheads would be good places to start. Pick up a map from the hub in brevard.
 

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~Reformed Mechanic~
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Discussion Starter #19
Hey man - think I know you from the SC forum.

Kitsuma would be a good stop on the way into town - you'll have to drive about 20ft from its parking lot. There's ways to do it that skip the 4mi of pavement and add some gravel road instead, and you can tack on some out/back on the bottom of Heartbreak if your 'less experienced' folks don't want to do the full epic.

Pisgah is definitely where all the big fun is, but for a mixed group, Bent Creek is underrated. It's not the 'full Pisgah' experience, but everyone's going to climb, descend, and grin.

Let me know if you all need a guide and I'll see what my schedule looks like. If the folks coming with you are from Raleigh too, I may just know them - lived there for 5 years.
Thanks! Im actually up here now and so far its been good. First day in Raleigh was a little lackluster, we road 7 miles at Umstead park and then lake Crabtree (nothing special). Today though we went riding at New Light (despite warnings that the markings were terrible) and it was a lot of fun, I liked it a lot. Tomorrow we might hit Beaver Dam or San Lee and then likely we will be heading west after that for some real riding ;)
 

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As a Florida rider who has ridden wnc, there's nothing in Florida to prepare you for all the climbing you'll be doing. Everything seems to be up then up some more.

I'd definitely hit up dupont to get your feet wet in wnc. The lake imaging and corn mill shoals trailheads would be good places to start. Pick up a map from the hub in brevard.
I feel that Alafia and Balm Boyette will prepare you for anything technical NC has to offer. The climbs will kill you though..... But you do lose the humidity
 
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