Mountain Biking

The high mountains of Western North Carolina are a venerable mecca for mountain biking enthusiasts. There are hundreds and hundreds of miles of designated mountain bike trails, which draw many cyclists of diverse abilities to the area each year. These trails meander in and out of hardwood coves, snake along lush banks of mountain streams, and challenge riders by ascending to overlooks close to 5,000 feet high and offering spectacular views of the surrounding Blue Ridge Mountains. By combining these trails with a multitude of logging roads, forest service roads and various dirt roads in the area, riders can enjoy a labyrinth of mountain bike routes – again, fitting any ability from the timid beginner all the way up to the top national riders.
Within a little more than an hour drive of Cashiers, there are four areas that offer great and diversified biking: Panthertown Valley, Pisgah National Forest, Dupont State Forest and Tsali Recreational Area. In addition to these four popular biking and hiking areas, there are many varied and spectacular areas where there are thousands of miles of trails. The Great Smokey Mountain National Park, the Nantahala National Forest, and the Sumter National Forest Gorges/Jocassee National Park also afford exciting biking.

If you haven’t tried mountain biking, you are missing out on one of the greatest adventure opportunities available anywhere, and it is right here in Western North Carolina. Let’s dispel the myth that you need to be a hard-core athlete to ride a mountain bike. While there are certainly many opportunities for the hard core, there are plenty of trails and outfitters that cater to the beginner. So, why not go for it one day soon and get out there and give it a try.