French Broad River Cruise

Brevard, North Carolina 28712

French Broad River Cruise

French Broad River Cruise Professional Review and Guide

"The French Broad River Cruise, amazingly enough in light of the surrounding terrain, is not difficult because it wanders through the French Broad River valley, caressing the river along much of its 40.3-mile route. It ranges from tree-shaded lanes to country roads, passing lovely pastures with a profusion of wildflowers blooming along the roadside in the warm months.

Throughout, you have wonderful views of the mountains that surround this peaceful valley. The route starts in downtown Brevard then follows country roads into western Henderson County, returning to Transylvania County by Crab Creek Road. The route turns west and then south to follow the river as it meanders through the broad valley south of Brevard and then takes U.S. Highway 276 back into downtown Brevard."

French Broad River Cruise Reviews

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If you are looking for a relaxing ride, this is not it. Way to much vehicle traffic and you must be on the lookout for cars and unaware drivers constantly. An early Saturday morning or Sunday am ride is best in order to enjoy a more relaxed roadway. The ride is beautiful and enjoyable, just be aware that earlier is better and the weekend is best for a lighter volume of competing traffic.
My wife & I did this ride in beautiful fall weather and found it to be an easy ride. We scouted its beginning and also found the traffic to be too heavy to feel safe in certain stretches. Old Hendersonville Rd is narrow in close to town and had alot of traffic. Unfortunately in the south there are far too many uneducated motorists (i.e. rednecks) who enjoy scaring cyclists by seeing how close they can come to hitting you, despite the abundance of Share The Road signs. We decided to tilt the odds more in our favor. Since this is a loop, there are ways to do this effectively. We decided to start just off Talley Rd on the prescribed route, where is there is an old cemetary. Picking up the route here reduced the amount of traffic you had to contend with and roads and riding were great. It was pure pleasure until you returned to Crab Creek Rd at about the 12-13 mile mark. Crab Creek Rd is also heavy with traffic at times but the riding is smooth and quick. After 8 miles or so you can exit Crab Creek on to Everett and the traffic once again is reduced somewhat but can still be busy as this is apparently a well-used cut through. During the ride we noticed other bike routes which adjoined this ride so there are certainyl ways to re-design your own route to reduce the traffic. I'd cut out Old Hendersonville Rd completely and replace it with these alternates. This road simply is not favorable from a traffic standpoint because even when traffic isn't heavy, it is too narrow in places to accomodate both cyclist and motorist. I have to give this route only 3 stars due to this. But with a little creativity and time taken to scout ahead of time, you can create a real gem of ride by modifying the prescribed route.
I really enjoyed my ride on this trail. The directions and cue sheet were excellent. The only thing that I did not like was Old Hendersonville Rd is quite a busy road with a lot of traffic. If there is some way to start farther out from Brevard and avoid this road, that would be great.

French Broad River Cruise Photos

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Trail Information

Nearby City
Trail Type
Skill Level
2,150 feet
Trailhead Elevation
2,350 feet
Top Elevation
DeLorme North Carolina Atlas & Gazetteer
Local Maps