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Pisgah for newbie
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I'm looking for advice on biking in Pisgah and the surrounding area. My older son (23) and I are going to Pisgah/Asheville for some socially distanced time. He's fit, but not a cyclist, likes to hike, trail run, and had fun MTB'ing in Stowe, VT. I can get him on a MTB or gravel bike. I've been having fun on my gravel bike this summer. I also like my MTB, but I wouldn't call myself a skilled rider.

any thoughts on MTB vs gravel out there for a newbie ?

This is my response to Covid and no summer vacation. It was easy to rent a cabin in the woods. I'm envisioning packing up the family truckster with groceries, a brief stop in Asheville for microbrew growlers, and then 3 days of bike/hike/etc.

Brian
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Re: Pisgah for newbie [TriBri00] [ In reply to ]
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I don't have specific routes because I haven't done it but I hope to someday go up Mt. Mitchell which is there. I don't know that its actually pisgah specifically but close. I think of it as a road route but I think they do also have a MTB course there.
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Re: Pisgah for newbie [TriBri00] [ In reply to ]
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Pisgah isn’t very good beginner mtb riding in my opinion. It’s pretty rough and has some advanced riding.

I can’t comment on gravel in the area, but if you are intent on trail riding it may be worth looking into the nearby DuPont State Forest. A bit milder and every bit just as beautiful.

Enjoy, the area truly is a mtb Mecca.
Last edited by: talking head: Aug 23, 20 13:00
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Re: Pisgah for newbie [talking head] [ In reply to ]
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talking head wrote:
Pisgah isn’t very good beginner mtb riding in my opinion. It’s pretty rough and has some advanced riding.

I can’t comment on gravel in the area, but if you are intent on trail riding it may be worth looking into the nearby DuPont State Forest. A bit milder and every bit just as beautiful.

Enjoy, the area truly is a mtb Mecca.

X2 go to DuPont just south of Brevard
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Re: Pisgah for newbie [TriBri00] [ In reply to ]
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You could start off with sections of the Pisgah Monstercross course:

https://www.pisgahproductions.com/...0national%20forests.

Then start to expand from there depending on how much gnar you are willing to risk. If you go MTB, bring a wider 27.5+ tire, would be my advice.

Keep an eye out for Yolanda Neff, she might be on the trails too. #local_celebrity
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Re: Pisgah for newbie [Slick_D] [ In reply to ]
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thanks to all. Definite yes to Dupont. Maybe we'll MTB 2 days, hike/trail run 2 days,

Brian
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Re: Pisgah for newbie [TriBri00] [ In reply to ]
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I'm not a regular poster (long time lurker) but live in Greenville and ride/run in the area often. I agree with the suggestion for mtb'ing dupont if you're relatively new to mountain biking. Specifically, ridgeline trail (descending) is a must do, as well as a loop up Cedar rock. If you really want to ride pisgah, the daniel ridge area is pretty friendly and fun, and black mountain is classic pisgah but approachable. For black mountain, climb the forest service road to the top and just descend from there. They've done a lot of trail building on that route and it should be in good shape for a loooong, fun downhill.

For trail running, you can link up an awesome loop of around 13-16 miles and hit all of the waterfalls in dupont. My favorite loop starts from the Fawn lake parking lot. Take reasonover creek trail to Turkey Knob. At the end of Turkey knob, turn right on Briery fork trail. Continue on this and it turns into to grassy creek trail. At the end of grassy creek trail, turn right on to Sandy trail and take this to Wintergreen falls. enjoy falls #1. Double back on Sandy Trail, turn left on Tarklin branch Rd. Left on Thomas cemetery Rd. Left on buck forest rd. quick right up isaac heath then quick left on locust. continue straight on hilltop loop to grassy creek falls. enjoy falls #2. Continue back to buck forest road. Left onto conservation road. Right onto bridal veil falls road. enjoy falls #3. Double back on bridal veil falls rd and turn right to continue on conservation road. Right on to fawn lake road. Stop at fawn lake for a swim. walk the .25 miles back to the car. (all the other main falls in the park are around the hooker falls parking lot and can be reached with just a short hike, but the above loop is a blast. It combines a nice mix of single track, gravel road, gorgeous, secluded waterfalls, and a great swim to finish.
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Re: Pisgah for newbie [TriBri00] [ In reply to ]
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Dupont and Bent Creek are more friendly to beginners. Pisgah is the opposite of that.
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Re: Pisgah for newbie [dirtrunr] [ In reply to ]
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thanks so much. The run/swim sounds great.

I'll post an update when we get home next month.

Brian
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Re: Pisgah for newbie [TriBri00] [ In reply to ]
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In Brevard, drive to the fish hatchery and park. Pretty much right across the road you'll see a gravel road that goes up hill. I ran it, about four miles up, and it just keeps going, so there's plenty of gravel you could explore just from that point alone. Also, plenty of trails (single track) to run down from this gravel road as well, to get back to the fish hatchery if you desire. Get a map and look at this area, you could ride/run for days from this one fish hatchery area
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Re: Pisgah for newbie [TriBri00] [ In reply to ]
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I'm going to add another voice of caution regarding Pisgah and instead going to DuPont. Pisgah can be deceptively steep and I almost feel like the trails are built to get you into trouble (e.g. you'll pick up speed and then, boom, you're in a rock garden). Don't get me wrong, Pisgah is amazing riding but I don't think it's well suited to a beginner.
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Re: Pisgah for newbie [EyeRunMD] [ In reply to ]
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EyeRunMD wrote:
In Brevard, drive to the fish hatchery and park. Pretty much right across the road you'll see a gravel road that goes up hill. I ran it, about four miles up, and it just keeps going, so there's plenty of gravel you could explore just from that point alone. Also, plenty of trails (single track) to run down from this gravel road as well, to get back to the fish hatchery if you desire. Get a map and look at this area, you could ride/run for days from this one fish hatchery area

Was going to post similar. Could also stop at the Brevard Tavern and Bike Shop right at the corner and get their thoughts as well.
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Re: Pisgah for newbie [TriBri00] [ In reply to ]
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I just had a roadie friend come back from a week down in that area-she was new to MTB. They really enjoyed https://www.thebikefarm.com/ Not sure if you already had things set-up for the trip but maybe an idea for a day or two if nothing else to maybe see the lay of the land. She got so hooked her MTB is on order!
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Re: Pisgah for newbie [Skippy74] [ In reply to ]
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Skippy74 wrote:
I just had a roadie friend come back from a week down in that area-she was new to MTB. They really enjoyed https://www.thebikefarm.com/ Not sure if you already had things set-up for the trip but maybe an idea for a day or two if nothing else to maybe see the lay of the land. She got so hooked her MTB is on order!

I had friends recently go to The Bike Farm and they loved it. We just went to Ashville for a long weekend and had a blast. Also a day trip to see friends in Brevard and a trip to Oskar Blues. Next time though we'll check out https://ecustabrewing.com/.

clm
Nashville, TN
https://twitter.com/ironclm | http://ironclm.typepad.com
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Re: Pisgah for newbie [TriBri00] [ In reply to ]
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The trailforks app is great for rating difficulty of trails.

Pisgah does have some easier rides that may be gravel rideable.

Check out Tsali, Bent Creek and Jackrabbit also
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Re: Pisgah for newbie [ironclm] [ In reply to ]
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love the options at Ecusta. can't wait

Brian
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Re: Pisgah for newbie [TriBri00] [ In reply to ]
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For hiking, drive from Pisgah, drive into PNF to the fish hatchery and there is a nice hike up to Johns Rock where it over looks Looking Glass and the mountains. Totally worth it

https://www.hikewnc.info/...river/john-rock-loop

Inside The Big Ring Podcast: Interviews with Ben Hoffman, Cody Beals, Kona Qualifiers, and Race Previews


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Re: Pisgah for newbie [Brandes] [ In reply to ]
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sounds great. thanks

Brian
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Re: Pisgah for newbie [TriBri00] [ In reply to ]
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For camping closer to Dupont, check out https://www.blackforestcampground.com/.

Janyne
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Re: Pisgah for newbie [GreenPlease] [ In reply to ]
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I should have taken your advice completely. We’ve ridden in Bent Creek, Pisgah and Dupont so far. Yesterday we did some of Pisgah with a guide. I thought having a guide would’ve been enough and his guidance was fine but I still found the rock in the rock garden. It happened just as you described. Advil and ice packs, and Ecusta brew were the order of the day. Today we rode slow and cautiously in Dupont on our own and it was great. Tomorrow we go home, but will ride a little gravel from the fish hatchery before heading out.

Brian
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