Bennett Gap route- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Bennett Gap route

    I have never ridden this trail and want to check it off the Pisgah list around mid March. Has anything changed from the directions given below? Is this the best route to hit Bennett. I'd like to keep it below 15 miles for the complete loop.

    This 11-mile Pisgah loops offers Asheville localís a vigorous test of fitness and handling prowess reasonably close to town. From the parking lot at the base of Clawhammer Road, the counterclockwise loop begins with a 4-mile doubletrack climb. Turn left at Buckhorn Gap (up some disparaging rock steps) to pick up the singletrack; from here another 400-feet or so of climbing remain to the high point atop Rich Mountain. From here, the trail drops down two hair-raising descents to Club Gap (a good spot to regroup) before continuing on a mild climb up the Buckwheat Knob Trail.


    At the Knobís summit, prepare for a screaming-fast descent of the ridge spine; this stretch tackles a handful of tight switchbacks and semi-advanced handling problems. The descent drops you down to FS-477 at Bennett Gap From here, continue past the gate on the Bennett Gap Trail. Note: This trail is closed to bikes April 15-Oct. 15ósummer riders can take the bailout option down FS-477 back to the trailhead.


    Continuing south on the Bennett Gap Trail, the route rolls through an open meadow on the ridge spine (with a few fantastic view points) before tackling the most technical stretch of the day: the Devilís Staircase. In the next 1.5 miles, the trail loses about 1,000 feet over numerous 3-foot drops, high-speed straights, and expansive Pisgah views (if you can stop for them). At Coontree Gap, continue on the Bennett Gap Trail as the route continues a fast descent on a more mellow route back to FS-477 and the parking lot.

    -Mapped by Eric Wever, in association with S.O.R.B.A.



    TO TRAILHEAD: From Asheville: Travel East on I26 to Exit40. Travel on NC280 towards Brevard. Turn Right onto NC276 2miles before downtown Brevard. Turn Right onto FS477 1 mile past the Pisgah Ranger Station. Turn Right into the horse stables parking lot.

  2. #2
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    That is a correct description. Look before you leap and have fun.
    On your left!

  3. #3
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    Claw hammer also leads to black mointain, right? That discription sounds alot like the ride I did last year. Im just curious as it sounds fun.

  4. #4
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    Yes. This is turning left off Clawhammer where you turned right. In general, I would consider this route to be more fun than Black- less hike-a-bike, bigger moves, faster descents. But, Black is pretty awesome too, not taking anything away from it.

  5. #5
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    Awesome, thanks for the info. Im heading down again in march, I didn't enjoy the hike a bike last year as it was cold. I will mention this to the group!

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by machine4321 View Post
    Awesome, thanks for the info. Im heading down again in march, I didn't enjoy the hike a bike last year as it was cold. I will mention this to the group!
    Does anyone actually "enjoy" that hike a bike?

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by catsruletn View Post
    Does anyone actually "enjoy" that hike a bike?
    I doubt it... In fact I bet 90% of people that ride it never do it again!

  8. #8
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    There is one place where you can turn left off of Bennett. Is that trail any fun? I have never done it.
    Friends don let friends ride road bikes.
    http://www.facebook.com/mikebmiller

  9. #9
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    Perry Cove trail stopped being bike-legal about 10 years ago (guessing). When it was open, it was awesome.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by catsruletn View Post
    Does anyone actually "enjoy" that hike a bike?
    There is hike-a-bike on Black Mountain?
    On your left!

  11. #11
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    Bennett Gap route

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Brown View Post
    Perry Cove trail stopped being bike-legal about 10 years ago (guessing). When it was open, it was awesome.
    It was one of pisgah's finest.

  12. #12
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    Bennett Gap route

    Quote Originally Posted by Banjopickin View Post
    There is hike-a-bike on Black Mountain?
    Yes.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by mbmb65 View Post
    Yes.
    sorry...

    I shouldve used one of these.



    sarcasm does not translate well in type.............................................. ......................
    On your left!

  14. #14
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    Bennet is possibly the best ratio of climbing to downhilling in Pisgah. Still can't ride up everything and still can't ride down everything........well. But we always look forward to this loop. Never not fun. And the day just keeps throwing more and more great trail at you.

    Recently did Clawhammer > Buckhorn Gap > Club Gap > Avery Creek Trail, then up Avery Creek Rd to Bennet and Finished through Bennet. Sick day of riding and a sick amount of downhilling.


    edit: We really liked the downhill from Upper Black, but the hike-a-bike in from Buckhorn Gap was just a long annoying disappointing slog. The rest of Black Mtn from Pressley Gap to the ranger station is so easy to get to and has so much of the great downhill, that I don't think we'll ever do the hike-a-bike again. If we really wanted the Upper Black downhill again, we'd hike up from Pressley Gap. It would be easier and take less time.
    Knolly Chilcotin
    Knolly Warden
    Knolly Podium
    Knolly Delirium

  15. #15
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    "This 11-mile Pisgah loops offers Asheville localís a vigorous test of fitness and handling prowess reasonably close to town. From the parking lot at the base of Clawhammer Road, the counterclockwise loop begins with a 4-mile doubletrack climb. Turn left at Buckhorn Gap (up some disparaging rock steps) "

    I just hate that! Life has enough insults without the disparagement of rock steps!
    IT'S CRACKERS TO SLIP A ROZZER THE DROPSY IN SNIDE

  16. #16
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    Had an awesome trip last weekend.
    Friday - Laurel Mtn up and Pilot down and then back to car (reverb post got stuck in the down position just before descending Pilot b/c my hose broke loose from the lever) The climb up the FS road sucked with the seat down. Note to anyone who does this ride - at the beginning of the Pilot Rock trail, if you go right and follow the blue markings you will be in for some hellish mossy rock covered trail, until you realize you went the wrong way. The directions say follow the orange blazes, but they are yellow when the trail starts. There is a Pilot Rock sign but I missed it.

    Saturday - climbed Clawhammer and descended lower Black. Fun fun fun. I will say that the instructions on the Pisgah Sorba Website said to turn right on Maxwell Cove Road (FS 5022) but it's not signed 5022, which threw us for a loop. It's signed something else. Luckily there was an older guy running up Clawhammer and told us that right turn we missed was Maxwell Cove Road. Then headed over and did the Cove Creek trail (climb gravel, descend Cove Creek)

    Sunday - climbed Avery Creek and down Bennett. holy moly that was fun.

    legs and butt tired...headed home

  17. #17
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    Has anyone successfully cleaned all of the muddy, wet rocky areas in the first few miles of the Laurel Mtn climb? I'm a pretty decent technical rider, but man it had rained on Friday as we drove up and the first few miles of trail were brutal. Had to clip out and walk a lot of those sections b/c it was so slick.

  18. #18
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    Clip out...what's that?

  19. #19
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    The first bit? Every time ....The last not so much

  20. #20
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    I have cleared them all at one time or another, but never in sequence. Never. Ever.

  21. #21
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    what custy said

  22. #22
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    I got most of them my first time riding that trail a week ago. It was pretty dry and I just stayed high side for most of them, which allows you to make a few mistakes and slip down but still keep going. I ride flats though so I was able to dab a couple times and keep going.

  23. #23
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    I have seen Laurel cleaned all the way up to Turkey Spring Gap, by a lady that was probably a pro.

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