Mountain Biking North Carolina
by Timm Muth (Falcon Guides)
© Timm Muth/Falcon Guides. All Rights Reserved.
Fantastic singletrack loop. Bit of a slap up (hike-a-bike for the last few hundred metres), but so worth it for the downhill on the otherside! Technical singletrack - absolute blast!! All finishes far too quickly. Rode it anti-clockwise - as recommended by local bike shop (Hub).
I did this loop both clockwise and counter clockwise, and if I had to make a choice, I would suggest that you ride it clockwise.
The trail starts of very easy, but after about 10 min. there is a pretty demanding climb, not so much steep, but the baby heads and roots make it a pretty grunt.
Anyone lacking a good healthy set of lungs and stamina, will probably end up walking about 20-30% of this section.
Once at the top, there are a few excellent narrow and very fast down runs, just be very careful, 'cos visibility is next to nothing on parts of the loop, and it is shared with walkers. Daniel Ridge Loop is very scenic, and best done very early, or pretty late to avoid crowds.
It took me an easy 70 minutes to do the loop.
Beautiful trail, we ended up hiking it in a clockwise direction. I would recommend this trail as a hike over a mountain bike ride. Mid to late May is perfect: not too hot, and the mountain laurels are in full bloom. A beautiful experience.
Daniel Ridge is a pretty good ride. In July I rode it clockwise, next time I'm going to try it counter clockwise. The first mile or so is easy, almost narrow fire road, that gradually tightens up to single track. You then come to the site of an old wooden bridge. At this point you take a right up a very steep and rocky trail. It stays like this for quite a while. For me, it was on and off the bike the whole time. Once you get to the intersection with Farlow Gap Trail (which is open even though it is signed as being closed from this direction) the ride points you down hill for a while, but then takes you back up hill. After Farlow Gap the trail is lot more rideable than what you just came up. The trail then flattens out and goes through a really cool meadow that would make a great camping area. At this point you have a super fast downhill to contend with. A good ride combo is to hook this up with Caney Bottom.
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