Published Somedays

Pisgah ride -- photos, video

(updated: Oct 27, 2009)

Took a trip to Pisgah not too long ago. It rained. But I did get a couple of good rides in. The first one was when I first got to the campsite at Davidson River on Saturday afternoon around 4pm. About 15 minutes after I parked the car at the site and setup the tent I was riding up the road. I hauled up Clawhammer, then took Black Mtn to Avery (up the stairs, past the cabin) until I got to the intersection. At the intersection I went straight across onto Buckwheat Knob.

If the wet conditions (usually always a little wet) weren't the first clue, then the Devil's Staircase on Buckwheat should have been my second. Going down all the roots and rocks when wet is a sketchy endeavor.

But that did not deter me. On to Bennett Gap, which I learned later that it was still closed to bikes until Oct 15, and it was not yet Oct 15. It's one of those seasonal trails -- really a hiking trail. I managed to clean the first set of rocks, but when I got further down the rocks were so wet and slick that there was no way I could clean the lower rocks. Did it last time wearing a video camera on my head but not this time. If I got hurt here I would be waiting a long time before someone found me. I didn't even think to tell anyone else where I was going, although anyone that knows me would know that I would pick one of the most technical trails in Pisgah. Alone. Getting dark. And slick. Some people never learn.

Since I got here late I missed the group ride at DuPont. But Sunday I got in a group ride with Jeff, Luke, Mark, Jake, and Ronnie at Bent Creek. I took some video with my new iPod nano which has the video camera built in. Amazing for such a tiny device. Check it out below. I just need to make a handlebar mount for it and then I can ride and film. This would be good for road biking as well.

The only other riding I got to do was a short, sketchy night ride up North Slope from the campground, because the next day it started to rain and wasn't expected to stop until Tuesday, so I ended up heading home early.

Bent Creek clips, shot with iPod nano (2m 15s):
[You'll need Quicktime 7 or later or VLC Media Player]

Click to play.
To download instead, right click here. Your media player must support H.264.


Up Clawhammer, a 7.5 mile climb

Top of Clawhammer. If you can ride or hop up these stairs, you are an mtb god. I am not, but I keep trying.

Black Mtn start from the top of Clawhammer.

From the top of a ridge on Avery Creek.

Rocks going down Avery.

Log drop on Avery.

View from Bennett Gap.

First rock section I cleaned. You have to make a sharp right, then down the rocks, then make a sharp left, like a 'z'. Good luck.

Nice color. Such an ephemeral time of year.

I was in the clouds.

Take your monitor, lift it over your head, then look at the photo. That's how it is in person. The camera is a lying bastard.

I've never had the balls to do this drop.

Stream along the forest service road to the horse stables.


North Boundary road looking North toward Asheville.

Sidehill Trail. When you get to the bottom of Greens Lick and want to ride it again (yes please), you take this back to the 4-corners and then up North Boundary back to the start of Greens Lick.

Group shot.


North Boundary road on the way to Greens Lick.

Forest Service road.

Coming out of Boyd Branch, a fun trail with some tech stuff on it.

Me on a log ride. Photo: Jeff.

See you next time.



Filed Under: Ride Reports > North Carolina > Asheville

Google Earth (.kml) files and GPS eXchange (.gpx) files.
Includes trails: Ingles Field Gap, Greens Lick, Wolf Branch, Lower Sidehill.


1. Jeff LeBlanc said...

Great shots! Sure glad you all made the trip, had a BLAST!!!

Oct 27, 2009 @ 5:32 PM

2. stephensquirrels said...

Great write up! Sure do miss those mountains.

Oct 28, 2009 @ 10:51 AM

3. Sir Peanuts said...

Man Bent Creek is a fun place to be let me tell ya. Bennett Gap however, still gives me nightmares...Pisgah loves to eat me alive or my bike, whichever happens first.

Oct 28, 2009 @ 8:29 PM

4. joeg said...

hey - awesome stuff-
what camcorder and what still camera do you use
also - how do you carry them?

Love to see an equipment list

Nov 12, 2009 @ 8:30 PM

5. joeg said...

ok - saw you use an ipod nano for the video
what about still pix?

Nov 12, 2009 @ 8:32 PM

6. shannon said...

Great pics!! Looks like a lot of fun

Nov 21, 2009 @ 6:08 PM


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