The Lincoln County Challenge, 41.0 miles in length, begins on the banks of Lake Norman at the Energy Explorium and then loops through resort neighborhoods on the lake’s edge before passing traditional houses and into the countryside. Sections of the ride use the area’s main highways, but most of the route is on quiet secondary roads. The loop passes through historic Iron Station and then winds its way back toward the Energy Explorium.
This route, which overlaps with part of the North Carolina Mountains to Sea Bicycle Route 6 along North Carolina Highway 73, provides an interesting juxtaposition of rural and resort/residential development as you ride west from Lake Norman. This body of water, 8 miles wide and 30 miles long, is the largest inland and human-made lake in North Carolina, offering 520 miles of shoreline. Its proximity to Charlotte has made it an attractive location for Charlotte commuters and those seeking a weekend retreat. Its development started on the east side, close to I–77, but has since spread to all other parts of the lake as well.This tour gives you an excellent vantage point of the lake, away from the higher-traffic areas.
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