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Length: 8 mi (12.9 km)
Surface: Singletrack
Configuration: One-way
Elevation: +168/579 ft
Total: 44 riders
 

Mountain Biking Yancey Ridge

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#538 of 618 mountain bike trails in North Carolina
#2983 in the world

This loop through the Wilson Creek Area of Pisgah National Forest appeals to the masochistic athlete; it begins with a relentless 3.5 mile climb and finishes with a 4.5 mile descent through some of Pisgah's most beautiful terrain. The first section connects the Roseborough Road with Old House Gap.

At this small clearing two trails intersect. Take a right and a deep breath for the final .1 mile grind. Stay left until this final uphill ends.

Stay right on the entire downhill. The descent is simply unbelievable. It starts very technical (but not so technical that it cannot be ridden FAST) and smooths out at the bottom before intersecting a gravel road at the end (stay right).

In late April when the Rhododendron and Mtn. Laurel bloom it is spectacular. Only drawback is the dearth of long-range views. Do not worry about the "NPS Bear Area" signs. Also, a map might be helpful. The second half is remote and primitive. I have never encountered another party on this trail, though it is considered "popular" by some.

Elevation change is 1100 feet. 8 miles of physically and psychologically stressful riding. The first section is STEEP and contains only a moment's refreshment, though I have a (strange) friend who actually loves this part. The second section is fast, eroded and otherwise terrifying.

Before you go
  • No Drinking water
  • No E-bikes permitted
  • No Fat biking allowed in winter
  • No Fee required
  • No Lift service
  • No Night riding allowed
  • No Pump track
  • No Restrooms
Getting there
From Linville, NC, go 0.2 miles on 221 South. After the Eseola Lodge take a left on the Roseborough Rd. This road crosses the Blue Ridge Parkway and then descends into Pisgah. Go for about 3.8 more miles (I think) to where the road flattens. Park just after you cross the cement bridge over Webb Creek. If the road starts to climb, you've gone too far. The trail is the forest service road that climbs opposite the parking area.
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Fair (Jul 7, 2018)
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  • wgilmore
    ****

    Rode this on 4/21/14. Great ride. Start at concrete bridge, 3 mile loose and rocky grind uphill, got lost right at the top for 30 minutes at the top due to some, fresh?, land clearing and some bad blow downs. When you get to the top of 191 there will be a 4 way intersection with a slightly uphill gated forest road on your left. Turn right here and go around the gate. Continue up the forest road about 300 feet and take your first road on the left. If you end up in an open field you missed your left turn. Continue riding down from here. Go straight off the "road" onto single track at the 2 big dirt mounds. The rest is pisgah riding at its finest! Overhanging rhododendron, deep beds of slick leaves just in case you thought you were going to slow down, spurts of super fast downhill with some nice drops and log hops, HUGE washouts and a super steep downhill to the road. Didn't see a soul until I got back down to the road where we met a nice couple and dog that did a bunch of the tree removal for Yancys ridge, they gave us some water. Thanks guys!! Long mild-ish uphill ride on the forest road back to the concrete bridge. Happy trails!

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  • travt
    ***

    Fun trail, but I haven't ridden it in years. This just scratches the surface of the amazing trails nearby in this area of Pisgah NF.

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  • Fid
    ****

    I had a hard time finding the singletrack part of this trail. From Roseboro road, follow the forest road across from the parking area straight uphill about 4 miles. When you get to the top of the ridge you see on the left a road blocked by a gate. The singletrack is supposed to start here, but I could not find it anywhere. Take a right here on another forest road that travels along the ridge (if you keep going straight you will be going down the other side of the ridge) and follow this road for about another mile. At the first tight switchback you will see two large mounds of dirt put there probably to keep vehicles from entering the single track.

    Go around these two mounds to access the singletrack. The first part of the singletrack is fast and pretty easy and not too technical for me. Then it descends into some completely insane washed out gullys that I found to be completely unridable, but maybe not so for those more experienced. These washed out gullies continue for about another mile and a half until it dumps you back out on Roseboro road.

    Unless you are a complete glutton for punishment, you should take two vehicles and park one where the trail ends on Roseboro road because you will have another four-mile steep uphill climb to get back to your car.

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