Published Somedays

New Pisgah Video

(updated: Dec 13, 2007)

Here is the video from my last Pisgah trip. It features several trails, old and new, including:

- Black Mountain
- Sycamore Cove
- North Slope
- Spencer Gap/Spencer Branch
- Trace Ridge

Black Mountain is a classic must-do Pisgah ride. We did the lower part, which is fast with lots of waterbars and banks.

Sycamore Cove is rocky and really rooty. But at this time of year the leaves cover the trail so you can't see any of the rocks and roots, which can sometimes make things more interesting.

North Slope is a good ride because there's not too much climbing for a longer, more gradual downhill with some tricky sections and off-camber roots to keep you on your toes.

At this point, I'm going to define a new term in mountain biking called Downhill Return On Invested Climbing (DROIC), analogous to the concept in energy, Energy Return On Energy Invested (EROEI), or finance, Return On Invested Capital (ROIC), etc., etc..

For most Pisgah rides, DROIC is less than 1. This means that when you get to the bottom, you turn to your buddy and say, "What? We're down already? After all that climbing?" Afterwards you realize that you're not done and you still have to climb more to get out.

Yet despite this fact every rigid 29er singlespeeder in Pisgah likes to try to get DROIC as close to zero as possible. I asked one of them what's so great about a rigid 29er ss and climbing everything and they said, "Hey man, if you gotta ask, you'll never know."

The first part of Spencer Gap downhill is like a bowlful of grapenuts with a coating of sugar on top - a tooth-rattling, baby-head minefield covered by leaves so you can't see !@#&. Brad, however, rode down on his rigid 29er singlespeed. Well, it wasn't so much riding unless you're idea of riding is playing the role of human pinball. The fall scenery is beautiful though and you get to see a large beaver dam along the way, and at the bottom is an old resevoir which was once part of Hendersonville Water.

Trace Ridge is a really fast downhill that I made the mistake of climbing. Big bike + Helmet cam + Trace Ridge Up = heart palpitations, lack of oxygen to the brain and delusions.

For the video I put it all trails together in a full version. I've also split it up by trail for the Ride Index archive. Because leaves and tree-filtered sunlight are the hardest damn things to film I had to bump up the compression so that it did not look like some bad impressionist painting. So the file size is large but who cares, high bandwidth rules! Crank it up and enjoy.


(You'll need the latest Quicktime player, version 7. Get it here )

November '07 Pisgah Trip (9m 19s):

Riders: Ed, Mark, Les, Brad, and myself.

To download instead, right click here. Then you can use the player of your choice (including iTunes) as long as it supports H.264.

Filed Under: Ride Reports > North Carolina > Brevard

Google Earth (.kml) files and GPS eXchange (.gpx) files.
Park at Fish Hatchery on FS475. Shuttle up FS475B to FS225 to start of Cove Creek. Down Cove Creek to Caney Bottom to Cove Creek group camp area. Up FS475 to Long Branch. Down Long Branch to Butter Gap. Down Butter Gap to parking. Tracks incomplete - missing Butter Gap.


1. RideinFlorida said...

Wow, what great memories from that trip. Nice job with the editing, and the use of angelic music for the crashes. I look forward to doing that trip every year. After watching the video, I just want to go out and ride Mt. Bikes more than a few times a year. Maybe we can get a springtime trip in as well. Thanks for the great video. Mark

Dec 13, 2007 @ 1:07 PM

2. brado1 said...

Nice video! yeah like Mark said lets do this some more...this time everyone on rigid singlespeeds!

Dec 13, 2007 @ 9:16 PM

3. brado1 said...

man, i need to get some fillings replaced after just watching the movie! good times, watchin' Mark tumble off that bridge makes me cringe!

Dec 13, 2007 @ 9:37 PM

4. imjeffnyernot said...

Fantastic video! Pisgah is officially on my list of places to go now! Outstanding!

Dec 16, 2007 @ 1:21 PM

5. Hollis said...

I need a powerbar after watching all of that!
Awesome stuff, thanks for sharing.

Dec 16, 2007 @ 9:38 PM

6. ryan said...

Love this video!!! I can't wait to get back to Pisgah...

btw, the music is sweet. who's providing the soundtrack?

Dec 17, 2007 @ 1:50 PM

7. ahollis said...

your videos are the BEST!!!!!I show them for the cops in my police bike class. Where do you get such good sound tracks for the vids?

Dec 30, 2007 @ 10:34 AM

8. Sir Bikes said...

That's awesome! I hope they enjoy them. I just want to convey my passion for cycling and hopefully get more people turned on to the sport so we can have more places to ride. My vision is to have mtb trails ringing every city and every development.

The music is actually from the free podcasts on iTunes. Hundreds of hours of great music, all free. The music used in this video is from the Transitions podcast by DJ John Digweed, Radio 538: Dance Department podcast, and the Groovelectric podcast.

Dec 30, 2007 @ 8:27 PM


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