South Mountains

Morganton, North Carolina

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1 Review
2 out of 5
The route (closed to vehicles, but not horses) retains a primitive atmosphere and is remarkably quiet. You will enjoy your ride all the way to Benn Knob, the highest point on the trail at 2,894 feet above sea level. From Benn Knob, though, the wilderness is broken by a paved road, which isn't so bad. The rapid paved descents were fun but too smooth. Electric wires are strung along the road to feed Pine Mountain Resort, which adjoins the state park, so you'll hear the hum of high voltage overhead on this part of the ride. If you don't like to ride pavement, then turn around here and take the route as an out-and-back (nine miles out, nine miles back). South Mountains is one of only two North Carolina state parks that allow mountain biking.
Mountain Bike! The Southern Appalachian & Smoky Mountains

DESCRIPTION FROM:

Mountain Bike! The Southern Appalachian & Smoky Mountains

by Steve Jones (Menasha Ridge Press)

The route (closed to vehicles, but not horses) retains a primitive atmosphere and is remarkably quiet. You will enjoy your ride all the way to Benn Knob, the highest point on the trail at 2,894 feet above sea level. From Benn Knob, though, the wilderness is broken by a paved road, which isn't so bad. The rapid paved descents were fun but too smooth.

Electric wires are strung along the road to feed Pine Mountain Resort, which adjoins the state park, so you'll hear the hum of high voltage overhead on this part of the ride. If you don't like to ride pavement, then turn around here and take the route as an out-and-back (nine miles out, nine miles back). South Mountains is one of only two North Carolina state parks that allow mountain biking.

©  Steve Jones/Menasha Ridge Press. All Rights Reserved.

Activity Type: Mountain Biking
Nearby City: Morganton
Distance: 18
Trail Type: Loop/Lollipop
Technical Difficulty: Moderate
Physical Difficulty: Easy
Season: Following heavy or sustained rain Jacob's Fork often floods, making it impassable; otherwise, this is an all-season trail.
Local Contacts: South Mountains State Park, 828-433-4772
Local Maps: A good map is available at the office or at the registration station.
Topo Map: South Mountains Topographic Map
Guide Book: Mountain Bike! The Southern Appalachian & Smoky Mountains Guide Book
Driving Directions: View Directions
Trail Directions: View Guide

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Recent Trail Reviews

4/30/2006

First of all, the aerobic level of this trail is not easy or moderate. The person who wrote that is smoking something illegal. I've been riding a lot for 10 years; it is most definitely not an easy trail in that regard. If you like singletrack, don't ride this trail. If you want killer views in the spring or summer, don't ride this trail. If you want to be technically challenged, don't ride this trail. If you want a workout, ride this trail. Basically, I wouldn't go out of my way to ride this again. The ups were way up and steep and the down's, while fast, weren't challenging except for the new loose gravel placed before several turns. I believe that climbs are the price we pay for fun descents...it wasn't worth it here.

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