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  1. #1
    zeebot
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    tsali locals or ppl that know the area well *read plz!*

    I'm going to head down to the tsali area most likely the last week of april or the first week of may. I'm trying to figure out where i can camp(tent) close by, where i can talk to someone that knows the area or can provide me with a map that highlights some good trails to hit, etc.

    i'll probably be riding for 3 days in the area. i may also head elsewhere. i'll have 9 days to go wherever. pisgah? any other spot?

    i want to do mega climbs and fun descents...doesnt everyone?

    fyi i'm a rigid single speeder and will most likely be coming by myself to escape PEOPLE. i live in manhattan...

    thanks for any info! feel free to email through this instead.

  2. #2
    zeebot
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    sorry for the spam i should've searched first. found some links in the NC forums section for trails. still would like opinions on the ideal place to camp. i plan on doing epic rides all day, drinking a beer while eating, and then passing out and repeating the next day.

    didnt know about dupont so maybe i should add that to the list...tsali, dupont and pisgah possible in 7'ish days? i like pain and know my limits so no worries there...i suppose i still need more trail info help on longer epic rides. thanks.

  3. #3
    KgB
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    You will see people at Tsali for sure

    If you go during the week,you can camp right at the trailhead and it will be less crowded.
    If you've never been it's worth doing,takes some lights and do all the loops there in one day,nothing epic but fun, and then move on to Pisgah or to one of the other areas nearby for the rest of your stay.
    Liberty Bikes in Brevard gave me some good info when I was there.
    I've been inside too long.

  4. #4
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    tsali and pisgah

    if the campground immediately at the tsali trailhead is filled there are a few other
    campgrounds off the main road, for info--even ahead of time, NOS-the Nantahala Outdoor
    Center can answer jsut about all your questions. that area is lucky enough to be at a
    convergence of the Appalachan Trail, the Chatooga River and, of course, Tsali, so it's
    pretty much outdoor stuff or nothing--really, i mean nothing! Pisgah is my preferred
    biking place--longer steeper climbs, Tsali is very buff fast hardpack--did i mention the
    very fast buff hardpack? very nice stuff. Dupont, i'm thinking, a person could do in a
    day, do i don't know that i'd make a trip just for that. Pisgah is a differnt story!! It goes and
    goes and goes and did i mention long steep climbs? Another amenity of Pisgah is
    civilization within a short drive--something to be said for a restauraunt now and then.

    either is a win-win and you could easily do both.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by joe friday
    if the campground immediately at the tsali trailhead is filled there are a few other
    campgrounds off the main road, for info--even ahead of time, NOS-the Nantahala Outdoor
    Center can answer jsut about all your questions. that area is lucky enough to be at a
    convergence of the Appalachan Trail, the Chatooga River and, of course, Tsali, so it's
    pretty much outdoor stuff or nothing--really, i mean nothing! Pisgah is my preferred
    biking place--longer steeper climbs, Tsali is very buff fast hardpack--did i mention the
    very fast buff hardpack? very nice stuff. Dupont, i'm thinking, a person could do in a
    day, do i don't know that i'd make a trip just for that. Pisgah is a differnt story!! It goes and
    goes and goes and did i mention long steep climbs? Another amenity of Pisgah is
    civilization within a short drive--something to be said for a restauraunt now and then.

    either is a win-win and you could easily do both.
    judging from the emails and responses here it looks like i'll hit either dupont or tsali on the monday and the other after that and then pisgah for the rest of the week until saturday. i havent looked at a map yet for which is where so that might be backwards. i may just do pisgah exclusively to cut down travel time if they are far apart. it sounds like pisgah has everything i'm looking for!

  6. #6
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    If you hit Tsali in April, be advised that the campground does not open until May. Spend a day at Tsali, a day at Dupont, and the rest of the time in Pisgah. There is a lot of free camping in Pisgah, or there are 3 campgrounds. The Davidson River campground, North Mills River Campground, and Lake Powhaton (sp.) campground. There is more riding close to Davidson River, but the other two campgrounds are also located near rides that should not be missed, and you will probably hit even if you are staying at Davidson River.

    Dupont is only about 30 minutes from the Davidson River campground, so not that far for a day. If you want to know about local bars, see the posts in the North Carolina Forum. Most of the bars / eating establishments listed are in Asheville, which is about 1 hour from the main part of Pisgah.

    The best free camping is had along FS road 475B, at the trial head to the South Face of Looking Glass rock, look for the first major pull out and you will see the camping down along the creek. There are also some good sites on FS road 477 near the bottom before you get to the Horse Stables, lots of riding nearby.

    There are also two bike shots in Brevard where you can find just about anything you need.

  7. #7
    "Mr. Britannica"
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    Lakeview Lodge


  8. #8
    The Gnarchitect Sketch.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spookykinkajou
    i'll probably be riding for 3 days in the area. i may also head elsewhere. i'll have 9 days to go wherever. pisgah? any other spot?

    i want to do mega climbs and fun descents...doesnt everyone?
    Don't go to tsali. Or if you do don't devote more than one day to it. You won't do any climbing to speak of there. It is a dirt race track basically, and I love that it exists because it draws crowds away from spots that are, in my opinion, more fun to ride. If you can't have fun there you shouldn't be mountain biking, but it is FAR from technical and is very flat. You've got 9 days and you're coming from up north, this is how I'd break it down:

    Days 1-2: Wilson creek area of pisgah (northern end of the forest) You can camp at the trailhead for the yancey ridge trail. The longest loop at yancey is around 20 miles long and has a couple epic climbs. Definitely good for a first taste of NC riding, buy a map of the area though- the signage is for shite. Day 2: Hit 21 jumpstreet/Schoolhouse ridge for breakfast. This is a nice, fairly technical stretch of trail. I don't think you want to do schoolhouse ridge on a rigid, and if you choose not to there are a couple of other trails in close proximity, all of them off the BRP (Blue Ridge Parkway). I live in this area and would be glad to hook you up with some photocopies of maps or ride along if I don't have to work.

    Day 3-9: Head to asheville (about 2 hours south) and use that as your jumping off point for the rest of your trip. Ride dupont, powhatan, and then camp at davidson. Do the rides from there and then hit tsali for one day. There are others more suited to handle this area, I see good advice already above.

    As for the tsali campground, I'm pretty sure its open in april... I camped there with about 100 other people friday and saturday nights.

    I hate to plug guidebooks on here, but I have found mountain biking north carolina by timm muth to be invaluable. Like I said, if you're coming from the north on down I suggest you get the whole flavor of pisgah. Let me know ahead of time and I may even be able to scan some choice rides out of that book for you and e-mail them to you.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Archdukeferdinand
    Don't go to tsali. Or if you do don't devote more than one day to it. You won't do any climbing to speak of there. It is a dirt race track basically, and I love that it exists because it draws crowds away from spots that are, in my opinion, more fun to ride. If you can't have fun there you shouldn't be mountain biking, but it is FAR from technical and is very flat. You've got 9 days and you're coming from up north, this is how I'd break it down:

    Days 1-2: Wilson creek area of pisgah (northern end of the forest) You can camp at the trailhead for the yancey ridge trail. The longest loop at yancey is around 20 miles long and has a couple epic climbs. Definitely good for a first taste of NC riding, buy a map of the area though- the signage is for shite. Day 2: Hit 21 jumpstreet/Schoolhouse ridge for breakfast. This is a nice, fairly technical stretch of trail. I don't think you want to do schoolhouse ridge on a rigid, and if you choose not to there are a couple of other trails in close proximity, all of them off the BRP (Blue Ridge Parkway). I live in this area and would be glad to hook you up with some photocopies of maps or ride along if I don't have to work.

    Day 3-9: Head to asheville (about 2 hours south) and use that as your jumping off point for the rest of your trip. Ride dupont, powhatan, and then camp at davidson. Do the rides from there and then hit tsali for one day. There are others more suited to handle this area, I see good advice already above.

    As for the tsali campground, I'm pretty sure its open in april... I camped there with about 100 other people friday and saturday nights.

    I hate to plug guidebooks on here, but I have found mountain biking north carolina by timm muth to be invaluable. Like I said, if you're coming from the north on down I suggest you get the whole flavor of pisgah. Let me know ahead of time and I may even be able to scan some choice rides out of that book for you and e-mail them to you.
    thanks for the detailed info! today i'll find out which week i have off.

  10. #10
    Surfin' da mountain
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    Good job! If you go to Pisgah don't forget...

    ...to ride Kitzuma; one of my favs. On a Singlespeed you'll be hike-a-biking the first switch back climb section then you are in the saddle for the rest of the ride. Kitzuma is a good place to ride after a rain, because it has good run off...FYI
    Wish I was there!

  11. #11
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    Remember that Tsali has...

    rotating schedule. Mouse Branch and Thompson's are open opposite days of Left and Right Loops. I would agree that Pisgah would be the better choice for a true taste of NC riding. Although Tsali IS fun, not hard-but fun.

  12. #12
    i worship Mr T
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    very flat is a relative term...

    Quote Originally Posted by Archdukeferdinand
    Don't go to tsali. Or if you do don't devote more than one day to it. You won't do any climbing to speak of there. It is a dirt race track basically, and I love that it exists because it draws crowds away from spots that are, in my opinion, more fun to ride. If you can't have fun there you shouldn't be mountain biking, but it is FAR from technical and is very flat. .
    you can do lots of climbing in Tsali. i just got back from doing the Tsali KnobScorcher mtb race last night and i got more than my fair share of climbing over 35 miles at race pace (OUCH!!). i've also ridden at pisgah, dupont, bent creek, etc. i adore pisgah and would say that it IS the best riding in the southeast.

    i agree with other that tsali is a very smooth trail with not a lot in terms of technical challenge and i agree that it is not worth devoting more than a day (at most) to riding.....though, on a rigid single speed you might enjoy it for more than a day. (btw, the woman who took 2nd in expert at yesterday's race did so on a single speed.........impressive!!)

    as far as camping, Davidson River campground is great!! really nice sites and clean bathrooms.

    enjoy your trip!!

    rt


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  13. #13
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    so it's settled. i'll be heading down the first week of may. probably drive down sunday the 2nd and stay in the area until saturday. looking fwd to it!

  14. #14
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    Haven't Yancee and Schoolhouse been wrecked by logging?

  15. #15
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    don't know...

    Quote Originally Posted by chickenlegs
    Haven't Yancee and Schoolhouse been wrecked by logging?
    last time i rode Yancee was about Jan '03 and there were lots of trees standing then....and lots of snow & ice.

    rt
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  16. #16
    The Gnarchitect Sketch.
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    Quote Originally Posted by *rt*
    i just got back from doing the Tsali KnobScorcher mtb race last night and i got more than my fair share of climbing over 35 miles at race pace (OUCH!!).

    Whew, my hat's off to you. That was a long friggin course. I was the jerk yelling "Hard right!" at the spot where the course changed for the last lap (right loop alt). That woman who won was pretty hardcore. Anyways, my point about climbing is that the guy said he wants to do epic climbs and descents. There are climbs at tsali but when I think epic climb, tsali does not come to mind. Its the autobahn (or velobahn) of the southeast.

    Re: Logging yancey and Schoolhouse-

    I ride short yancey (the 9 miler) 3-4 times a week. It is the same as it was last summer. I haven't ridden the long loop yet this season, but I think that Yancey dodged the bullet. As for schoolhouse, I haven't been out on it yet this season and I think I've heard that they're working on closing/re-routing it because it has become so eroded. I did hear that logging started there just prior to the winter, but I'm not sure to what extent the trail was damaged. I've only lived here for about 7 months, I'm still getting to know everything myself.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Archdukeferdinand
    Whew, my hat's off to you. That was a long friggin course. I was the jerk yelling "Hard right!" at the spot where the course changed for the last lap (right loop alt). That woman who won was pretty hardcore. Anyways, my point about climbing is that the guy said he wants to do epic climbs and descents. There are climbs at tsali but when I think epic climb, tsali does not come to mind. Its the autobahn (or velobahn) of the southeast.

    Re: Logging yancey and Schoolhouse-

    I ride short yancey (the 9 miler) 3-4 times a week. It is the same as it was last summer. I haven't ridden the long loop yet this season, but I think that Yancey dodged the bullet. As for schoolhouse, I haven't been out on it yet this season and I think I've heard that they're working on closing/re-routing it because it has become so eroded. I did hear that logging started there just prior to the winter, but I'm not sure to what extent the trail was damaged. I've only lived here for about 7 months, I'm still getting to know everything myself.

    pisgah definitely sounds more up my ally. I'll skip tsali since i'm much more into grueling climbs and very technical trails. on one of the days i'd like to mock a race i'm doing which is 60 miles with over 10,000ft of climbing. sounds like pisgah might be a good locale for a practice run! archduke, i'm definitely heading down on the 2nd of may for the week will you be around then for some swapping of info?

  18. #18
    The Gnarchitect Sketch.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spookykinkajou
    archduke, i'm definitely heading down on the 2nd of may for the week will you be around then for some swapping of info?
    Absolutely. Also, all the logging talk has piqued my interest. I'm going to do the long loop of yancey tomorrow to find out what the deal is with that. I also have to go to the LBS today so I'll find out exactly what's been logged and where.

    I know this'll sound like I'm going back on my statement about tsali, but it'd be a decent last day ride. The views are beautiful from the overlooks and if you can get there during the week you may have the place to yourself. I'd put it in the "if I can get to it" category.
    Last edited by Archdukeferdinand; 04-05-2004 at 11:58 AM.

  19. #19
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    ah yes, i remember you!

    Quote Originally Posted by Archdukeferdinand
    Whew, my hat's off to you. That was a long friggin course. I was the jerk yelling "Hard right!" at the spot where the course changed for the last lap (right loop alt). That woman who won was pretty hardcore.
    i was feeling distinctly miserable by the time i got to where you were. it was a very long course. i'm just happy to have survived and it was a bonus (and a surprise) that i managed to get some money out if it as well.

    all of those women are hard core!! makes me wonder what i'm doing out there with them!

    Quote Originally Posted by Archdukeferdinand
    Anyways, my point about climbing is that the guy said he wants to do epic climbs and descents. There are climbs at tsali but when I think epic climb, tsali does not come to mind. Its the autobahn (or velobahn) of the southeast.
    agreed. you'll find more epic stuff outside of tsali. and when i think epic anything tsali is about the last place that comes to mind! though when you throw a rigid single speed into the mix some of those tsali climbs might become pretty epic.

    thanks for course marshalling this weekend. without all the volunteers the race wouldn't have been half as.....well, epic!

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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by *rt*
    i was feeling distinctly miserable by the time i got to where you were. it was a very long course. i'm just happy to have survived and it was a bonus (and a surprise) that i managed to get some money out if it as well.

    all of those women are hard core!! makes me wonder what i'm doing out there with them!



    agreed. you'll find more epic stuff outside of tsali. and when i think epic anything tsali is about the last place that comes to mind! though when you throw a rigid single speed into the mix some of those tsali climbs might become pretty epic.

    thanks for course marshalling this weekend. without all the volunteers the race wouldn't have been half as.....well, epic!

    rt
    in my limited SS'ing experience i have to admit i climb faster than i did on the gearie. standing up and mashing with no suspension taking your power away is quite productive. i only get stuck where it's so steep i cant spin the pedals. then i sling the 20lb beast on my shoulder and run Looking fwd to these hills should be a great test and fun as well!

    arch do you have an email so i can contact you when it gets closer to the trip?

  21. #21
    i worship Mr T
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    you should come down for the off road assault on mt mitchell

    Quote Originally Posted by Spookykinkajou
    pisgah definitely sounds more up my ally. I'll skip tsali since i'm much more into grueling climbs and very technical trails. on one of the days i'd like to mock a race i'm doing which is 60 miles with over 10,000ft of climbing. sounds like pisgah might be a good locale for a practice run! archduke, i'm definitely heading down on the 2nd of may for the week will you be around then for some swapping of info?
    last year it was 55 miles with 12,000'+ of climbing......all in pisgah.

    rt
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  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by *rt*
    last year it was 55 miles with 12,000'+ of climbing......all in pisgah.

    rt
    wow that sounds great do you have a link for information?

  23. #23
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    plans

    So, now i need to get down to the details.

    I like your time outline arch so i'll probably follow it. Do you need reservations for the camping you mentioned by yancey..how about a name so i can get directions? for day 2, is that close by the camp site? is that an all day ride as well or just a half day then move on down south to davidson river? need to know that in case i need to have reservations for the davidson river site for that night...

    thanks for the great help everyone!

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spookykinkajou
    arch do you have an email so i can contact you when it gets closer to the trip?
    Yeah, its liam@lpcmac.net Directions will be dependent on what route you take, the north of pisgah is not that great about signage for trails or for forest service roads. Some of them have an actual name if you get on them before the parkway and just a FS # if you get to them from the parkway. Parkway is very scenic but not necessarily the most direct route. Let me pull out my trail map and guidebook and see if I can't use them in conjunction to give some concise directions.

    As for camping at yancey, it is a primitive area and I don't know that you could make reservations if you wanted to. There's plenty of space on which to camp, I have seen it used by hunters on occasion. The other trails I mentioned vary in length, you could easily do 21 jumpstreet as a morning thing and be in asheville by afternoon. Really the best way to do things is to get a topo trail map of the wilson creek area ($6.95 at the LBS here in Boone) and plan your route that way. If you like you could just paypal me like $8 and I could pick another one up and send it to you. There are other trails nearby (Brown mountain, SMP) but I haven't ridden them. Don't know if you want to do them on a rigid. Here's a shot of a local freerider on SMP ($#!+ my pants).



    and as for being nearby, all of the trails are in the same area. I don't know that you'll want to bike from one to the other though. As the crow flies they're close together. Following forest service roads, sometimes not so much. Also I'd factor in what you're driving. I have a stock jeep cherokee and there's some places I don't drive. Also if it rains a great deal some places you'd want to have 4wd or not go by auto. Not to say you can't park above them on the parkway and hike/bike down, just something to think about before you're 700 feet below paved roads and you've got a long muddy climb back.
    Last edited by Archdukeferdinand; 04-05-2004 at 03:12 PM.

  25. #25
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    link's not up yet but...

    Quote Originally Posted by Spookykinkajou
    wow that sounds great do you have a link for information?
    you can email Todd for more info:

    epicrides@bellsouth.net

    Todd organizes the ride. nice guy, great ride! took me 9 hrs to finish last year (link to my race report here: http://forums13.consumerreview.com/c...34220@.efbdecd) but my goal is to cut 2 hrs off that time for this year.

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