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  1. #1
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    Beware!!! Zero tolerance by Forest Rangers on Avery Creek Rd. in Pisgah for drinking

    I want to warn everyone about an experience I had in Pisgah in the Davidson River Area. I would hate to have it happen to someone else.

    I took my girlfriend for her first camp out ever and it was completely ruined by some overly aggressive rangers. She is completely frazzled by the whole experience. She is mentally ruined and got ticketed as well. She may never feel 100% comfortable camping again and she certainly won't feel comfortable in the Brevard area again.

    We just packed up and left a couple of hours after arrival and didn't spend a dime locally. I don't think I'll be able to bring her back over there and be comfortable. We live 1 1/2 hours away and MTBing is my #1 recreation. I am just devastated by this.

    Please be aware that unlike any other outdoor experience with drinking in an area where it is not allowed, they came up and quickly questioned us, searched everything we had and wrote a ticket. They ran everything they could and we came back clean, not even a speeding ticket. We still were cited. Usually everywhere else I've ever been, unless you're causing trouble or the alcohol is visible, they come and are friendly and check you out. They just pounced on us.

    They were simply looking for trouble. We were the targets of that.

    There is a zero tolerance there for alcohol possession on Avery Creek rd. Do not go in there and be unaware of the enforcement situation.

    What was odd was that we were told by a ranger on Thursday when I called to just stop by the ranger station and they'd help us with info on the area. When we arrived the station was closed because it was the weekend.

    I had camped there years ago before they closed the informal roadside camp spots and put in the alcohol ban. It was super confusing now trying to figure out where to go just by the signs in front of the station, and there was no map or paper you could take with you. No one can memorize that much info. We just went for it and paid the price.

    We walked into a mess. We we were shocked at the killer spot we got. After we were made to feel like criminals we found out why there were three empty choice spots on a busy weekend.

    Something else they said really disturbed me: they crack down in there because of an alcohol-fueled rape and another attempted murder. I guess that's life in the big city. To know that it is that dangerous is just shocking.

    To say I feel uneasy and uncomfortable going up to Pisgah is an understatement.

    This is very bad for business, frankly. I can go many other places and not have to be treated like that. I guess they are cracking down to try to reduce visitor numbers. It is going to work.

    I love the area so am willing to give it another chance. My lady and many other newcomers will not stand for this treatment.

    Beware.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by gasface11 View Post
    I want to warn everyone about an experience I had in Pisgah in the Davidson River Area. I would hate to have it happen to someone else.

    I took my girlfriend for her first camp out ever and it was completely ruined by some overly aggressive rangers. She is completely frazzled by the whole experience. She is mentally ruined and got ticketed as well. She may never feel 100% comfortable camping again and she certainly won't feel comfortable in the Brevard area again.

    We just packed up and left a couple of hours after arrival and didn't spend a dime locally. I don't think I'll be able to bring her back over there and be comfortable. We live 1 1/2 hours away and MTBing is my #1 recreation. I am just devastated by this.

    Please be aware that unlike any other outdoor experience with drinking in an area where it is not allowed, they came up and quickly questioned us, searched everything we had and wrote a ticket. They ran everything they could and we came back clean, not even a speeding ticket. We still were cited. Usually everywhere else I've ever been, unless you're causing trouble or the alcohol is visible, they come and are friendly and check you out. They just pounced on us.

    They were simply looking for trouble. We were the targets of that.

    There is a zero tolerance there for alcohol possession on Avery Creek rd. Do not go in there and be unaware of the enforcement situation.

    What was odd was that we were told by a ranger on Thursday when I called to just stop by the ranger station and they'd help us with info on the area. When we arrived the station was closed because it was the weekend.

    I had camped there years ago before they closed the informal roadside camp spots and put in the alcohol ban. It was super confusing now trying to figure out where to go just by the signs in front of the station, and there was no map or paper you could take with you. No one can memorize that much info. We just went for it and paid the price.

    We walked into a mess. We we were shocked at the killer spot we got. After we were made to feel like criminals we found out why there were three empty choice spots on a busy weekend.

    Something else they said really disturbed me: they crack down in there because of an alcohol-fueled rape and another attempted murder. I guess that's life in the big city. To know that it is that dangerous is just shocking.

    To say I feel uneasy and uncomfortable going up to Pisgah is an understatement.

    This is very bad for business, frankly. I can go many other places and not have to be treated like that. I guess they are cracking down to try to reduce visitor numbers. It is going to work.

    I love the area so am willing to give it another chance. My lady and many other newcomers will not stand for this treatment.

    Beware.
    So I'm guessing the sign at the beginning of the road that says "Alcoholic Beverages Prohibited Beyond This Point" wasn't enough of a clue for you?
    I reserve the right to make fun of your beliefs if I think they are stupid.

  3. #3
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    I guess I could point out a few spots that feel safe for an adult beverage.

    That does sound like a bummer. Local knowledge is great in real time. I bet the bike shops in the area can advise of places to be and not to be.

    I got one of those said tickets is some random place in Wilson's. Five of us at $125 a pop. Best part was one ranger asked me who sells that fine beer I just made you pour out I want to try it sometime.

    Obie

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by pisgahboy View Post
    So I'm guessing the sign at the beginning of the road that says "Alcoholic Beverages Prohibited Beyond This Point" wasn't enough of a clue for you?
    Hey it's cool. I never said we were in the right.

    My point is the average person from out of town needs to know that the "don't ask don't tell" or "keep it in a cup and out if sight" rules that 90% of the outdoor recreational places in the USA follow don't apply to Avery Creek Rd.

    It almost universally is a grey area. Not there.

    If I can save one person from having their weekend ruined this post will be useful.

    Just telling it how it is.

    Like I said, that's life in the big city. The extremely high use of this area and its close proximity to cities (Asheville and Spartanburg, etc.) means that it has big city problems.

    It isn't what it used to be. People need to know that.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by pisgahboy View Post
    So I'm guessing the sign at the beginning of the road that says "Alcoholic Beverages Prohibited Beyond This Point" wasn't enough of a clue for you?
    So your saying you never drank a beer in the forest?

  6. #6
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    Beware!!! Zero tolerance by Forest Rangers on Avery Creek Rd. in Pisgah for dri

    I'm assuming we're talking about white pines rd?

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    Thanks Obie. I heard Wilson's was strict! Same situation over there. They had a bunch of problems and are being strict. I had a great time at the Pisgah SORBA Spring Fling once and we had a a heck of a party. That was right up the road! I don't want any others to feel like my girlfriend!

    I wrote this because there is not a single thing on the Internet about this. I have ridden Pisgah for over a decade and though I'm not a local, I had no idea this alcohol ban had happened back in '09.

    I never had lucked out before and gotten a spot on that road since they redid it and changed the campsites and changed the law.

    It is only April, but every free spot but a couple on that road were full. (Summer in Pisgah is packed as we all know; it will be even worse then). In hindsight, we should have paid to stay in some lame campground or gotten rid of the alcohol (who can say they would do that honestly?), but the spot was so good we took a chance. Lesson learned. We were ignorant.

    I don't want others getting in trouble needlessly. Not having the ranger station open to answer questions only added to the confusion.

    The situation needs clarification, so here it is.

    This is something I forgot to add: Why we left was because the rangers said we could keep the alcohol after writing us the ticket. I have never heard of that!!! But they told us that if we got into it and they came back and we were wasted, "there would be trouble." We felt like they were itching for escalation and we didn't want any part of it. Thankfully we could drive away! Most probably aren't that lucky.

    Why give the alcohol back but give a ticket? What were they wanting???? Trouble, pure and simple. We didn't want any. We felt like they were baiting us.

    At least now there is documentation on this forum and the web that this is how they do things. People need to know to be vigilant back there for crime, beware the aggressive rangers, and not to bring alcohol on FS477.

    Is this the first anyone has heard of this? Surely not. Either way it needs to be documented so we MTBers will be aware of it.

    A lot of people from all over the country ride there. It's an easy problem to deal with if you know the rangers have zero tolerance. They probably would appreciate writing less tickets.


    Here is the law and a map of the area for mbmb65:

    Attachment 788309

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by gasface11 View Post
    Hey it's cool. I never said we were in the right.

    My point is the average person from out of town needs to know that the "don't ask don't tell" or "keep it in a cup and out if sight" rules that 90% of the outdoor recreational places in the USA follow don't apply to Avery Creek Rd.

    It almost universally is a grey area. Not there.

    If I can save one person from having their weekend ruined this post will be useful.

    Just telling it how it is.

    Like I said, that's life in the big city. The extremely high use of this area and its close proximity to cities (Asheville and Spartanburg, etc.) means that it has big city problems.

    It isn't what it used to be. People need to know that.
    If you've been around here long enough, you'd understand why they don't want folks drinking and carrying on in the forest. Those campsites are a whole lot better than they used to be. 10-15 years ago you'd have a bunch of white trash tearing stuff up and basically acting the way dumb white trash acts. Piles of garbage and sites bombed out was the norm for a good while. Some folks were basically living in Pisgah staying the max time at one campsite then moving to another. There was a guy with a Gran Torino and trailer that lived in the forest for several years. There was a couple that had an old RV that they eventually abandoned in N. Mills. It got to the point they had to do something so now we have enforcement of the rules. There were "no alcohol" signs around here before '08. They've become more harsh on the enforcement end of things since the guy killed the old couple up near pink beds. It's a bummer, but, it's the way of things now-a-days.

    With regards to my personal consumption, absolutely I have been a scofflaw and consumed a malted beverage on Forest Circus land. I was smart enough to not get caught.
    I reserve the right to make fun of your beliefs if I think they are stupid.

  9. #9
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    Your girlfriend is "mentally ruined" by a search and a ticket? Wow.

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    This post is not for locals. They will have a handle on it.

    I figured someone would be Trolling.

    And talking about how smart you are. Thats all anybody needs to know about that.

    People need to know about this unfortunate situation. They need to know there was a murder, too. That is just awful. A serial killer no less. Stay vigilant.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by gasface11 View Post
    I wrote this because there is not a single thing on the Internet about this. I have ridden Pisgah for over a decade and though I'm not a local, I had no idea this alcohol ban had happened back in '09.

    Here is the law and a map of the area for mbmb65:

    Attachment 788309
    Yeah, it's even made the interwebz (so it must be true!):

    Forest Service to ban alchohol in camping area

    http://www.fs.usda.gov/Internet/FSE_...rdb5379580.pdf

    http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j...44770516,d.dmQ

    http://www.citizen-times.com/article...ery-Creek-Road

    Pisgah National Forest | Camping in Pisgah NAtional Forest

    http://www.romanticasheville.com/ima...e_aug_2008.pdf

    TZ
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    Hahaha!

    Thanks TZ. Now people can have all those links in one spot in a mountain biking forum about the area.

    I was more concerned with the crackdown than the law. Lots of places have laws against possession without enforcement. That's the norm in most vacation spots.

    Also it seems like common knowledge with locals that the murders up at pink beds caused this crackdown. Now everyone knows.

    Got any links about enforcement? Lots if other areas do. Now Pisgah does too. My apologies if I missed them.

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    It was her first camping trip ever. It was not a positive experience, no. It was a bit much for her.

    You find it hard to believe but being shaken down is not normal for everyone. If you get hassled, you won't be back. Who wants to spend a bunch of money and waste time off for a big hassle? Lesson learned.

    You only get one first impression, and this was it for both camping and Pisgah.

    It is what it is.

  14. #14
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    you were breaking the law, you got busted, they took it easy on you. Let it go. I'm glad those guys are out there patrolling. I have spent the last 9 years of my life out there and only had 2 experiences that affected me negatively. Every time I approach a FS ranger, they are friendlier than my next door neighbor. Even when they were investigating a freshly demolished campsite, littered to the extreme, while they were standoffish at first, when they realized I wanted to help, the were extremely friendly.

    This rant is kind of like the time that I got pulled for speeding. Doing 61 mph in a 60 zone. I broke the law, they pulled me over. The found a gun under my seat ( a squirt gun) we joked about it, they asked me questions and I was on my way. Am I gonna rant about how state troopers are jerks? No, I treated them with respect and they returned the favor.

    If you don't like it here, don't come back.

    But if you do come back, beware, there are a lot more positive user days than there are negative. The majority of people who come here, come back, because they had such a great time. Partially due to the fact that the FS Rangers are out there patrolling, giving people a hard time.

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    You're right. I'm ranting.

    Like I said, I never said I was in the right.

    And again this post isn't for locals so I hope no offense was taken. None was meant. You all know about this.

    And I really like your blog by the way. How's the Trips for Kids thing going? Your long rides are inspirational.

    I would disagree they took it easy on us. I have had dozens of experiences across the US with rangers. I even had a beer with one of the rangers in The Hub a while back. This was my first negative run in; usually they are cool. I was shocked really. There was one who was respectful and one who was not. I assure you there was no laughing. It was obvious they are fed up. From what I learned from them and these posts they have good reason to be fed up and I hate that through my ignorance I became part of the problem.

    All this is a warning for those that just don't know. Like I said also, the rangers would appreciate writing a few less tickets, I bet.

    I just hope I can save at least one person from having a bad experience out there.

    Sounds like the enforcement is welcome. I learned my lesson. Maybe others can learn from my mistake.

  16. #16
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    Ok, we get it.

  17. #17
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    Beware!!! Zero tolerance by Forest Rangers on Avery Creek Rd. in Pisgah for dri

    Is smoking dope ok?

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by mbmb65 View Post
    Is smoking dope ok?
    Now that's good comedy

  19. #19
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    Glad to see the Rangers are staying busy.

    Perhaps your girlfriend can get some help for her "Distressed Camping Syndrome" through her medical plan at work.
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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by mbmb65 View Post
    Is smoking dope ok?
    Yes
    Just stick it in granny and start grinding.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by gasface11 View Post
    My point is the average person from out of town needs to know that the "don't ask don't tell" or "keep it in a cup and out if sight" rules that 90% of the outdoor recreational places in the USA follow don't apply to Avery Creek Rd.

    It almost universally is a grey area. Not there.

    Please explain to us how when it clearly tells you no alcohol that it is a "grey area".

    Just because you got away with it in the past, it doesn't mean it is a grey area.
    It just means you either didn't get caught or you were let off easy.

    I have drank beer in places where it isn't legal many times. Luckily I have not been caught. In no way does that make it a grey area, it just means I have been lucky.
    If I do get caught, I will say sorry, pay my fine, and hope to not get caught the next time.

    Ranting and over dramatizing about how you are all pissed off about getting caught is ridiculous. If you don't want to come back because of it, fine.

    As far as the them trying to run off business, that is idiotic.
    They aren't trying to run you off. However I guarantee you that National Forrest Services are not going to lose any sleep if you don't come back.
    Just stick it in granny and start grinding.

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    Just so every is on the same page, the murders of Irene and John Bryant happened in October 2007 and the killer is on "death row" in Florida for different murder.

  23. #23
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    A few things come to mind reading this thread.

    1. I'm local and was oblivious to this ordinance.
    2. I'm ok with the ordinance given that I see first hand all the bud lite and miller lite can the biggest pieces of shiit that ever walked the earth leave up in our forest.
    3. It should be sanctioned that we have the right to put a bullet in the heads of said pieces of shiit.
    4.If you are pulling off at the first FS road in a very busy area to go "camping" you are doing it WRONG!
    5. If you get more than 100 yards down an actual trail, 1 mile + is better, ain't no body going to mess with you unless you have a purty mouth. If you do, we'll I apologize in advanced.
    6. This happens every spring. FS LE is out to add to the meager coffers, that and the warm weather bring out silver can chunking idiots.
    7. Beer is good, I'd argue Whisky is better.
    8. Shouldn't we be more focused on finding Samford??????
    Sent via my heady vibes from the heart of Pisgahstan

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by mattnmtns View Post
    8. Shouldn't we be more focused on finding Samford??????
    yes
    Just stick it in granny and start grinding.

  25. #25
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    Beware!!! Zero tolerance by Forest Rangers on Avery Creek Rd. in Pisgah for dri

    Ok, so just to be clear: if a sign is in place that states alcohol is prohibited, then alcohol is actually prohibited?

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by mbmb65 View Post
    Ok, so just to be clear: if a sign is in place that states alcohol is prohibited, then alcohol is actually prohibited?
    No, it is a "grey area".
    Just stick it in granny and start grinding.

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by gasface11 View Post
    It was her first camping trip ever. It was not a positive experience, no. It was a bit much for her.

    You find it hard to believe but being shaken down is not normal for everyone. If you get hassled, you won't be back. Who wants to spend a bunch of money and waste time off for a big hassle? Lesson learned.

    You only get one first impression, and this was it for both camping and Pisgah.

    It is what it is.
    I got news for you.

    If your girlfriend is "ruined" from this whole experience, she never wanted to go camping in the first place. She just now has an excuse you will listen to.
    Just stick it in granny and start grinding.

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by mbmb65 View Post
    Ok, so just to be clear: if a sign is in place that states alcohol is prohibited, then alcohol is actually prohibited?
    No, it's like a speed limit sign...merely a suggestion...lol
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    You should try having some alcohol and some dope.

  30. #30
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    Get caught doing something that requires a court appearance & a lawyer on federal land and it will cost you anywhere from 1 to 2 THOUSAND DOLLARS just to get a lawyer started on your case & then it will snowball from there...
    "Why are you willing to take so much & leave others in need...just because you can?"

  31. #31
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    Tell your girlfriend it could be worse: I have a friend who got a $75 ticket from the butt police (Rangers) for changing his shorts in the Ranger Station side parking lot. He was hiding behind his truck, but the Ranger said he could tell what he was doing.

    At least y'all aren't sex offenders now ;-)

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    Wow that sux.

    When I see alcohol prohibited, I think great there won't be a bunch of drunk, loud college kids, white trash, or losers getting wasted, breaking stuff, blowing stuff up, leaving trash all over, and staying up till the crack of dawn being a-holes! Cuz they won't tolerate it.

    However, it means I can sip a beer or some wine from a red solo cup while sitting by the fire before I go to bed at 10 or even 11pm. This has been my experience. Granted not in Pisgah NF. As long as they don't have a reason, like acting like the above a-holes, they leave you alone.

    I guess it's a "grey area"...

    Well glad to know. I guess I'll be more careful when I plan a mtb/camping trip to Pisgah area. Maybe I'll rent a cabin again...

  33. #33
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    There are laws on the books and laws that are enforced. They are not the same. Many times laws are ignored for a period of time so as many violators as possible can be robbed of their money at a future time. The public being played is nothing new either in politics or law enforcement.

    That being said, I feel the no alcohol rule is a good one. Little is worse and more dangerous than a drunk.

    Here where I live if one is riding with a backpack and is of darker skin coupled with dusk riding without a light they get stopped and searched. If they are white with an expensive bike they can ride at pitch dark conditions without any issues. Thats common place here.
    Last edited by 1niceride; 04-10-2013 at 03:38 PM.
    lean forward

  34. #34
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    I think I can clear all this up for any visitors.

    Beware!!! Zero tolerance by Forest Rangers on Avery Creek Rd. in Pisgah for drinking-greyarea.png


    Just make sure you have your grey area card with you aka you own personal grey area.

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    Last edited by kjlued; 04-11-2013 at 04:59 AM.
    Just stick it in granny and start grinding.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 1niceride View Post
    Here where I live if one is riding with a backpack and is of darker skin coupled with dusk riding without a light they get stopped and searched. If they are white with an expensive bike they can ride at pitch dark conditions without any issues. Thats common place here.
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  36. #36
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    Pisgah Area SORBA

    Quote Originally Posted by kjlued View Post
    ... your idea of technical may be much different than other peoples idea of technical.

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    Oh Bro! I need one of those Gray Area Cards! That would really help. LOL.

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by G-Ryder View Post
    Oh Bro! I need one of those Gray Area Cards! That would really help. LOL.
    I can hook you up with one for the low low price of a few beers.
    Just stick it in granny and start grinding.

  39. #39
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    This just in - Meth Labs and Bomb making are now prohibited in parts of Pisgah as well. Signs will be going up soon.
    Friends don let friends ride road bikes.
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  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikeridesabike View Post
    This just in - Meth Labs and Bomb making are now prohibited in parts of Pisgah as well. Signs will be going up soon.
    Not worried about it, I already have my grey area card.
    The laws won't affect me.
    Just stick it in granny and start grinding.

  41. #41
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    Beware!!! Zero tolerance by Forest Rangers on Avery Creek Rd. in Pisgah for dri

    Quote Originally Posted by mikeridesabike View Post
    This just in - Meth Labs and Bomb making are now prohibited in parts of Pisgah as well. Signs will be going up soon.
    Whatever. People have no more personal liberties left. I can't legally do anything these days.

  42. #42
    Rogue Exterminator
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    You can do whatever you want in the grey area.
    Just stick it in granny and start grinding.

  43. #43
    Big Mac
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    Beware!!! Zero tolerance by Forest Rangers on Avery Creek Rd. in Pisgah for dri

    Quote Originally Posted by kjlued View Post
    You can do whatever you want in the grey area.
    I guess I'll be needing one of those cards.

  44. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by mbmb65 View Post
    I guess I'll be needing one of those cards.
    I will hook you up for a Diver Down at the Yacht Club.....(that has to sound dirty to anyone who doesn't know).
    Just stick it in granny and start grinding.

  45. #45
    Big Mac
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    Beware!!! Zero tolerance by Forest Rangers on Avery Creek Rd. in Pisgah for dri

    Quote Originally Posted by kjlued View Post
    I will hook you up for a Diver Down at the Yacht Club.....(that has to sound dirty to anyone who doesn't know).
    Deal.

  46. #46
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    I was in Pisgah all weekend and tossed back several beers along with everyone else in the group.
    Luckily I had my grey area card because the forest service didn't bother any of us the whole time.

    The cards really work.

    OP, let me know if you want one.
    I will hook you for free since you were "harassed" for breaking the law by law enforcement the last time you were here.
    Just stick it in granny and start grinding.

  47. #47
    H8 H8 H8
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    Yeah, it's strange. But oh well.

  48. #48
    banjo plunker, wrench
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    Quote Originally Posted by kjlued View Post
    I can hook you up with one for the low low price of a few beers.
    Just make sure you are in the "gray" area when the beers are consumed!
    any time spent riding a bicycle is re-cycled goodness....

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