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.
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