Results 1 to 18 of 18
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Posts
    56

    Best Route for hitting Bennet Gap?

    Hi all, I am looking for route suggestions for riding Bennet Gap (not shuttling). I was thinking parking at the horse stables--> Avery Creek --> Buckwheat knob --> then down Bennet. Is this the best route if I'm looking to ride 2-3 hours or so? Any other suggestions for different routes or add-ons?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation: swoodbrn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    742

    Best Route for hitting Bennet Gap?

    We'll, sort of...I wouldn't go up Avery the whole way; that's just silly and you'll get in the way of people coming down who are actually enjoying themselves. You'd be better to start on Avery, then get on Buckhorn Gap to Clawhammer, all the way up to said gap, then up/over on Black mtn to connect with Buckwheat Knob.

  3. #3
    Big Mac
    Reputation: mbmb65's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    3,137

    Best Route for hitting Bennet Gap?

    Or up club and down buckwheat.

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation: swoodbrn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    742

    Best Route for hitting Bennet Gap?

    Right...gonna take a while to get around to the backside of Rich Mtn from the stables, however.

  5. #5
    Big Mac
    Reputation: mbmb65's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    3,137

    Best Route for hitting Bennet Gap?

    Hah! Straight up the road, straight up the road, pass Bennett on your left.😁

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation: swoodbrn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    742

    Best Route for hitting Bennet Gap?

    True enough. Forgot about that road.

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Posts
    163
    A good three hour ride that includes Bennett Gap for me is:
    --Park at one of the White Pines CG pullouts
    --Go up Avery Creek Road (away from 276) to the horse stables
    --At the stables go right and up up up Clawhammer Road to Buckhorn Gap
    --Take a left (up the crude stairs and west-ish) on Black Mountain
    --At the intersection (Club Gap) of Black Mountain/Buckwheat/Avery/Club Cap take a right on Club Gap (this downhill will warm you up for Bennett)
    --Club Gap will flush you out back on Avery Creek Road, go left on ACR
    --When ACR tops out continue for a few hundred feet and Bennett Gap will be on your right.
    --Bennett will end on ACR, and a right will take you back to White Pines.

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation: ridn29s's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    657
    Quote Originally Posted by pisgahrider View Post
    --At the intersection (Club Gap) of Black Mountain/Buckwheat/Avery/Club Cap take a right on Club Gap (this downhill will warm you up for Bennett)
    --Club Gap will flush you out back on Avery Creek Road, go left on ACR
    Club is fun, but Buckwheat is a better downhill warm-up for Bennet.... especially towards the end.
    many gears, some pies

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Posts
    56
    Thanks for all the suggestions!

  10. #10
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Posts
    163
    Quote Originally Posted by ridn29s View Post
    Club is fun, but Buckwheat is a better downhill warm-up for Bennet.... especially towards the end.
    Yep, Buckwheat is a great variation to this ride.

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation: swoodbrn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    742

    Best Route for hitting Bennet Gap?

    Did this loop yesterday. I'd forgotten how much up there is to it - Clawhammer, Rich mtn, Buckwheat Knob, and that's no small knob. Throw in Grassy and Sycamore for a warm down and that's a great Christmas Eve.

  12. #12
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Posts
    218
    I'd like to confirm a route, if that's alright...

    Yesterday, I did:
    Up Clawhammer, Left on Black Mountain, climbing past that shelter, then down Avery Creek.

    For a variation to hit Bennett Gap: At the Avery Creek intersection, continue straight from Black Mtn trail and ride Buckwheat Knob to ACR, then jump on Bennett Gap. Right?
    Yesterday, Buckwheat Knob looked super-overgrown at the Avery Creek intersection.


    Separately, at the top of Clawhammer, is there good riding continuing straight on Buckhorn Gap and making a loop to the east?

  13. #13
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Mike Brown's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    2,977
    Any loops that include finishing down Bennett to 477 are seasonal only- closed to mtb's from April 15th- Oct 15th.

    Otherwise, yes that's a good route.

    Continuing east on Buckhorn, almost anything you do is going to get pretty big. One (also seasonal) extension could be Buckhorn>South Mills River>Wolf Ford Gate/ gauging station connector>Pink Beds>Club Gap back to the Avery Creek Intersection. There's some pavement and gravel in the middle of that, see map. It's also a hike a bike up Club and, again, seasonal only on Pink Beds.

    You could take Buckhorn>SMR>Wolf Ford>5018(I think that's the number)>Horse Cove>Squirrel>SMR>Buckhorn back to the top of Clawhammer. That'd be pretty fun and not that much more. 5018 is a very hot, exposed long grassy road climb, be aware.

    Unless you like pain, and I mention this because it looks Ok on the map, don't do any loop that includes Turkey Pen from the trailhead>Black Mtn trail. I like hike a bikes but, even so, that way's stupid with them.
    Last edited by Mike Brown; 07-26-2014 at 06:42 PM. Reason: self-policing grammar and accuracy

  14. #14
    Big Mac
    Reputation: mbmb65's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    3,137

    Best Route for hitting Bennet Gap?

    Ditto what mike said. The road to horse cove gap is hateful. It once made me throw up. Aside from that, it does make a great loop.

  15. #15
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Posts
    218
    Okay, cool.
    Yes, that Turkey Pen loop did look tempting, so thanks for the head's up.

    Out of curiosity only, what's the reasoning for the seasonal closures? (I'm not from around here).

  16. #16
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Snototter's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Posts
    232
    Quote Originally Posted by addATX View Post
    Okay, cool.
    Yes, that Turkey Pen loop did look tempting, so thanks for the head's up.

    Out of curiosity only, what's the reasoning for the seasonal closures? (I'm not from around here).

    Seasonal trails are usually very popular hiking trails as well as mtb trails. During the "tourist" season they see a lot of foot traffic. Helps reduce user conflict or so I am told.

  17. #17
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Posts
    151
    The road to the top of Horse Cove (Funnel Top Mtn?) isnt too bad. Its much easier than Clawhammer and has better views too. I almost got bitten by a rattlesnake on it so be advised. The Claw -> Buckhorn -> S. Mills -> Funnel Top -> Horse ride is awseome. You can then Hit Squirrel to Buckhorn and back to Claw. At that point you can do Black mountain proper back to the Ranger Station, or Black to Avery. Buckhorn is very mellow and not much of a grade either way you ride it.

    I did this exact ride a month or so ago. Really good mix of the best of what Pisgah has to offer.

    Its a good amount of miles but hey, you got all day right?

  18. #18
    Carbon8er
    Reputation: El34's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Posts
    1,159
    Yeah, I would not go up Avery, much more fun to come down avery

    Go up clawhammer to Buckhorn gap
    Left up black mtn and ride the ridge
    At Club gap either go straight over buckwheat knob to Bennet gap
    or right down club gap trail and back up 477 to bennet - Nice climb for some extra mileage

Similar Threads

  1. Found GPS- Bennet Gap
    By kinsler in forum North & South Carolina
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 11-14-2012, 12:11 PM
  2. Udall/Bennet Wilderness Proposal
    By UncleTrail in forum Colorado - Front Range
    Replies: 29
    Last Post: 04-19-2012, 04:12 PM
  3. Bennet Gap Video
    By flair4040 in forum North & South Carolina
    Replies: 64
    Last Post: 07-10-2011, 02:02 PM
  4. Bennet Gap (WNC) is still seasonal.
    By D.F.L. in forum North & South Carolina
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 04-20-2011, 12:34 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •