Dropping 1,800 feet in 2 miles insists that there’ll be insane amounts of speed over some awfully scary terrain, regardless of your personal level of comfort. This is, quite simply, a downhill by which all others should be measured. After hiking 0.2 mile off the Blue Ridge Parkway to get to the bike-legal track, you’ll find 2 miles of solid, sick, crazy speed over steep contour runs, lots of it incredibly buff with some extremely nice berms tossed in here and there. Washouts, off-camber turns laced with snaky roots, and short rocky patches generally come up too quick to be scared over (which is probably the safest way to handle it).
In some areas, a 1-inch mistake is going to send you bouncing off trees down a 60-degree drop for 100 feet, so be careful. A flatter, streamside track offers a chance to pedal for a change, rather than just hang on and pray, with lots of wood, stone, and water obstacles. Some extremely hairy stream crossings for those emboldened to idiocy by the downhill. Ugly surprise drop at mile 4.5 requires total commitment and health insurance. Easy ride out gives you time to quit shaking before you get back to the car. Tread: 4.6 miles of primo, hard-packed forest singletrack; 1.8 miles of Forest Service road.
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