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Off The Beaten Track Volume III: A Guide to Mountain Biking in North Georgia
by Jim Parham (Milestone Press)
Fabulous single track makes this one heck of a trail! On this route, a paved downhill takes you to the Toccoa River before you go up, up, up on a forest road to the trail. You then ride over the top of the mountain and along the ridge on sweet single track. Highlights: Views, long rocky downhill, river rapids, vacation homes, small stream crossings
Mountain Biking Georgia
by Alex Nutt (Falcon Guides)
Previously part of the ride known as Rich Mountain, the Stanley Gap Trail is a wonderful stretch of pure Georgia mountain singletrack. The trail shares part of its length with the Benton-MacKaye Trail, one of the best hiking trails in the Southeast. After the steep, rooty initial climb, you will find yourself on a stretch of narrow singletrack cut into the steep side of the mountain. At an elevation of 3,365 feet, you’re near the peak of Rocky Mountain, the high point of the ride (this is one of the higher rides in the state). The views from the ridges make the first climbs worth the effort. If you have underdressed for cold weather, you’ll feel it here. The Benton-MacKaye Trail leaves the bike trail near this point. The narrow singletrack along the higher ridges keeps your attention focused on the trail while the scenery in any season tempts you to gaze into the distance. Just past Rocky Mountain, a saddleback ridge offers a nice area for a break, with plenty of great views. Tread: 5 miles on singletrack, some on old roadbed.
Stanley Creek Trail is a good example of a short but tough North Georgia trail. The singletrack section runs on old logging roadbeds that seem to be all over the place in these parts, although the trail is so overgrown in some sections, you wouldn’t believe too many folks had been there before. The section that loosely follows Stanley Creek is a beautiful trail, and some sections have some rocky surprises for you if you don’t pay attention. The gravel return leg on Forest Road 330 opens up some views of the surrounding peaks, and gives you a good sampling of the local terrain. The section that runs along Stanley Creek is full of photo opportunities in the fall. Don’t forget your camera. Stanley Creek Loop Tread: 1.4 miles on gravel Forest Service road and 1.4 miles on singletrack trail, some on old roadbed.
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