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  1. #1
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    Places to shuttle

    I'm getting a lot more int AM riding but live about 3 hours from the mountains. I would love to do a trip and get a lot of downhill runs in to work on skills so was wondering if there are any good places to shuttle and not spend a ton of time climbing.

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    Windrock, Bailey, and Beech.

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    There are trails you can shuttle in Pisgah, but some people discourage it and none of them truly avoid all climbing. You'll have some climbing on all of them and none of them are easily accessible shuttles. Right now, some of the roads are closed, as well, which limits your options even more.

    The bike parks mentioned by mountainbiker24, on the other hand, are commercial operations that operate shuttles and/or lifts (Beech is lift, the others are shuttles). Beech is closed until the summer opening season, though. The others are somewhat steep and technical, if you are working on improving and not confident riding that type of terrain, you might be better off with a different approach.

    If you want to work on skills, you are a lot better off making focused, intentional efforts at working on specific sections of trail or skills. This quote more or less sums it up:

    “It all comes down to this; practice. What is it? Practice is not a race. It’s also not time to go out and just bust out laps. It’s time to figure out where your problems are and what you need to do to fix them. Then you must have the discipline to go work on that problem until you have it better. Like all other sports, practice is not going out and playing the game, rather, in practice, whether it be baseball, soccer, basketball or any other sport, practice is when you work on drills to improve your skills. In motocross too this is what practice should be. Unfortunately, for most though, they practice motocross by just riding laps and this not what you should be doing and will not improve your motocross skills. Rather, you will just repeat the same bad form and bad habits lap after lap. -Gary Bailey”

    Mountain Biking Advice from the Most Respected Motocross Coach!

    You aren't going to improve much by just going out and doing shuttle runs. You'll just end up reinforcing bad habits. Riding the trail in it's entirety is certainly a part of it, but if there are specific skills you are trying to focus on or areas you want to improve, you are better off finding places to session and make intentional efforts to work on them than you are busting out a bunch of shuttle runs.

    If you are new to riding here, there are trails you can ride that have opportunities for this sortof thing that are relatively short and easy to access without shuttling. In particular, North Slope (When it is open to mountain biking, please be kind to hikers you see there) and Sycamore all have sections that people new to riding here can session to improve without spending a ton of time out there climbing out. Yea, it's not a shuttle run, but it'll work to help you improve your form and the areas are accessible in a short ride.

    If you want to do a ride in other areas of the forest in the AM, then go session stuff for an hour or so, there are plenty of opportunities and places to do it at both of those. Even if you hit the same drop, section of trail, or work on braking technique for an hour on a steep section, you'll find that you can help improve your consistency and technique, which will help you in other areas more than running shuttles will.

  4. #4
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    Bailey Mtn and Windrock are your best options for shuttling.

    Most everything else requires some climbing.
    Last edited by Banjopickin; 01-28-2018 at 06:20 AM.

  5. #5
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    Thanks for the replies. Bailey's looks really cool. It's tough to tell based on videos, but I think I'd be fine there with a 150 AM bike on most of the blues. I'm not an amazing technical rider and just got into jumps but can do small gap jumps, 4' drops, have ridden a bunch of Pisgah. I know Seth from Seth's Bike Hacks likes bike parks for getting more time to work on bike skills than time climbing. I rode Kitsuma last time out and I enjoy lung busting climbs, but wanted a bit more - more time, downhill, tech features.

    Sessioning has helped me a ton as more technical stuff by me has been built including some jump lines. But I'm kind of looking for more and some variation. Anyway Windrock is too far of a drive but I'll check out Baileys at some point and Beech in the summer.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by bank5 View Post
    Thanks for the replies. Bailey's looks really cool. It's tough to tell based on videos, but I think I'd be fine there with a 150 AM bike
    Yep, sure will.

    also check out Bryce Bike Park. riding bro and his wife took a trip there a few years ago. Both on single crowns. Rave reviews for trail bike friendly lift access spot.

    There have been fiddy-leven threads on Pisgah shuttling, search and you will find. tl;dr is that there is not much true shuttling. some locals only spots. some in Wilson Creek where there's a 10/10 chance you'll get lost without a local, some 30 mile/4k vert "shuttle" routes that let you hit some killer trails but you're still smoked afterward.....

    but to practice 5 minute laps? Nah shuug', not here.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by bank5 View Post
    I'm getting a lot more int AM riding but live about 3 hours from the mountains. I would love to do a trip and get a lot of downhill runs in to work on skills so was wondering if there are any good places to shuttle and not spend a ton of time climbing.
    3 hours in which direction? There may be more options if we knew where you're located.

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  8. #8
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    So....you want to only shuttle with 150 all mtn bike? Jesus man go pedal that thing in the forest. The riding anywhere in Pisgah is world class. This is coming from a guy that works at a bike park fyi.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Timothy G. Parrish View Post
    3 hours in which direction? There may be more options if we knew where you're located.

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    Raleigh

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sugar_Brad View Post
    So....you want to only shuttle with 150 all mtn bike? Jesus man go pedal that thing in the forest. The riding anywhere in Pisgah is world class. This is coming from a guy that works at a bike park fyi.
    Yes, I want to shuttle. Not shuttling is what I do 99.9999% of the time. I've biked a number of places around the country and have only shuttled on bike trips in Moab and Oakridge, OR. I've lived in Southern California where a typical ride was 2 hours up and ~20 minutes down. So it seems ridiculous to give me (or anyone else) crap if I want to get a few more runs in by shuttling when I make a trip to the mountains. I'm pretty tied up with work and family so it's not like I can take frequent and/or long trips to the mountains. I usually try to leave and get back within 24 hours and that includes a lot of time of the road and some sleep.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by bank5 View Post
    Raleigh
    In Pisgah Ranger district, Bennett Gap, Trace Ridge. In Pisgah Grandfather district, Heartbreak Ridge, Star Gap. There's more in Grandfather district (Greentown, Beehive), but a lot isn't marked, so best to go with someone who's familiar. In either area you're limited to trails you can shuttle conveniently, so you'll probably just be doing the same thing over and over.

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  12. #12
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    If you have limited time, shuttling is the poorest use of that time. 80% of your time, if not more will be in the truck.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bank5 View Post
    I've lived in Southern California where a typical ride was 2 hours up and ~20 minutes down. So it seems ridiculous to give me (or anyone else) crap if I want to get a few more runs in by shuttling when I make a trip to the mountains. I'm pretty tied up with work and family so it's not like I can take frequent and/or long trips to the mountains. I usually try to leave and get back within 24 hours and that includes a lot of time of the road and some sleep.
    I'm not sure many of our climbs would take that long, maybe upper black with the hike a bike sections? I don't even think that took me 2 hours and I was pushing, stopping, pushing, stopping (sigh)...Not sure Laurel took us 2 hours, either.

    I pretty rarely spend more than an hour and a half or so climbing without riding downhill and I'm really slow. If you are reasonably fit, I wouldn't expect to spend 2 1/2 hours climbing and, even if you aren't, there is stuff here you can ride that has climbs which are more broken up.

    As another user pointed out and I didn't really clearly elaborate on earlier, a lot of the shuttles are out of the way. It's not as convenient to shuttle here as it is other places, unless I'm doing it wrong. It seems like the majority of shuttles I see or am part of are to avoid one section of climbing on a large route, not to repeat the same thing several times in a day. I've ridden in other parts of the country where shuttling is much more convenient for getting multiple laps in, but that isn't really the case here.

    Have you done any riding up here yet? If you are used to 2 1/2 hour long climbs, you might find that you are able to get more in by pedaling than you realize.

    Quote Originally Posted by Timothy G. Parrish View Post
    In Pisgah Ranger district, Bennett Gap...
    Isn't Avery Creek Rd closed at the moment?

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Timothy G. Parrish View Post
    ...Trace Ridge....
    Trace?! 40 minute 1-way for running this shuttle - https://goo.gl/maps/obA3t3GGLnv

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    Quote Originally Posted by Adodero View Post
    Isn't Avery Creek Rd closed at the moment?
    Not sure. He didn't give dates, so couldn't speak to that. As always, call before you haul.

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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lithified View Post
    Trace?! 40 minute 1-way for running this shuttle - https://goo.gl/maps/obA3t3GGLnv
    Not sure as I never shuttle. Just pointing out where I often see cars doing so.

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  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by bank5 View Post
    Yes, I want to shuttle. Not shuttling is what I do 99.9999% of the time. I've biked a number of places around the country and have only shuttled on bike trips in Moab and Oakridge, OR. I've lived in Southern California where a typical ride was 2 hours up and ~20 minutes down. So it seems ridiculous to give me (or anyone else) crap if I want to get a few more runs in by shuttling when I make a trip to the mountains. I'm pretty tied up with work and family so it's not like I can take frequent and/or long trips to the mountains. I usually try to leave and get back within 24 hours and that includes a lot of time of the road and some sleep.
    You may consider the foot shuttle. Not being a dick. It's going to be best bang for your time-buck on getting repetitive runs in on technical DH's. You can walk up Lower Bennett in 20 minutes and rip it 5 times that way in a two hours. Do the same on "Upper Black Left" from Club Gap/Avery Creek intersection. There are plenty others.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Timothy G. Parrish View Post
    Not sure as I never shuttle. Just pointing out where I often see cars doing so.

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    I don’t think the cars you’re seeing over there are shuttling trace. You’d still have to climb Spencer and the bottom of Trace ridge. You just miss some gravel. Now that wash creek is closed, probably not much shutting in that area.

  19. #19
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    Some good info. That makes sense about it being a pain to shuttle and not worth it time wise. If I want to shuttle, I'll go to the bike parks mentioned upthread.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lithified View Post
    You may consider the foot shuttle. Not being a dick. It's going to be best bang for your time-buck on getting repetitive runs in on technical DH's. You can walk up Lower Bennett in 20 minutes and rip it 5 times that way in a two hours. Do the same on "Upper Black Left" from Club Gap/Avery Creek intersection. There are plenty others.
    A little hike a bike is always good. I was low on daylight when I did Kitsuma so I tried biking up the whole thing as quickly as possible instead of taking the fire roads. The trail was muddy too, so some sections of the climbs were rough, had to walk a decent amount and was often doubled over trying to catch my breath.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bank5 View Post
    A little hike a bike is always good. I was low on daylight when I did Kitsuma so I tried biking up the whole thing as quickly as possible instead of taking the fire roads. The trail was muddy too, so some sections of the climbs were rough, had to walk a decent amount and was often doubled over trying to catch my breath.
    Especially given your goals. I love walking tech sections and trying to find lines, then focus on running them.


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  21. #21
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    @bank5
    Relax chief. The best way to see our Forest is by bike. By the time you drive up and down any of the forest roads you could be halfway done with an epic climb. We don't have a chair lift in Pisgah, and shuttling for a mile of downhill would be a waste of time. You would however enjoy Bailey this time of year. Try to catch it when it's frozen though. It is pretty steep so you might want to consider renting a proper DH bike for the full experience. I have worked the past 2.5 months straight 80+ hrs a week so cry me a river. Tomorrow I actually have off and will be pedaling my bike in the forest. You will be disappointed if you drive three hours just to spend more time in the car/truck for the same 1 mile of downhill a few times. But whatever floats your boat.

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    Hey I have a similar question. Ive ridden Dupont and some of Pisgah but I have always gone with a group that knows the trails. This time I am going solo so Im looking for decent loops where I wont get lost. The only time I rode solo I did Dupont Ridgeline loop, which was Jim branch up which was fun. Looking for similar loops.

    Ill be renting at the hub and they say that there is a 7 mile loop from the shop do any of you know what trails?

    Thanks

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    Quote Originally Posted by yem999 View Post
    Hey I have a similar question. Ive ridden Dupont and some of Pisgah but I have always gone with a group that knows the trails. This time I am going solo so Im looking for decent loops where I wont get lost. The only time I rode solo I did Dupont Ridgeline loop, which was Jim branch up which was fun. Looking for similar loops.

    Ill be renting at the hub and they say that there is a 7 mile loop from the shop do any of you know what trails?

    Thanks
    Buy the relevant Pisgah Mapping Co map for the area when you get to The Hub to pick up your rental. You'll see it and many other options. It's basically the standard "demo loop" when demo trucks stop for a visit. The Pisgah Mapping Co trail maps are world class. Mine get heavy use, but it is time for me to replace them with the most recent editions.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by yem999 View Post
    Hey I have a similar question. Ive ridden Dupont and some of Pisgah but I have always gone with a group that knows the trails. This time I am going solo so Im looking for decent loops where I wont get lost. The only time I rode solo I did Dupont Ridgeline loop, which was Jim branch up which was fun. Looking for similar loops.

    Ill be renting at the hub and they say that there is a 7 mile loop from the shop do any of you know what trails?

    Thanks
    Up Thrift Cove, down Lower Black Mountain.

    If riding from the Hub that's probably 7 miles. It does require a half mile or so of pavement riding to get to the Thrift Cove trail head.

    And yes.. buy a Pigah Map Co. Map... Or get their map on the Avenza App.
    On your left!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Banjopickin View Post
    Up Thrift Cove, down Lower Black Mountain.

    If riding from the Hub that's probably 7 miles. It does require a half mile or so of pavement riding to get to the Thrift Cove trail head.

    And yes.. buy a Pigah Map Co. Map... Or get their map on the Avenza App.
    Wish there was an easy/no road way to jump across onto Eucusta trail (that's what that is called right?).

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  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lithified View Post
    Wish there was an easy/no road way to jump across onto Eucusta trail (that's what that is called right?).

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    Ecusta, IIRC, after the old torn down paper plant, which the trail passes in Brevard.

    And I agree, would love a better way to cross 276 to get on that path from The Hub.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Harold View Post
    Ecusta, IIRC, after the old torn down paper plant, which the trail passes in Brevard.

    And I agree, would love a better way to cross 276 to get on that path from The Hub.

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    Word on the street is they’re widening 276 to the DRC soon... maybe they’ll add a bike lane??

    Hahahahahahah sorry I couldn’t even keep a straight face typing that
    On your left!

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Banjopickin View Post
    Word on the street is they’re widening 276 to the DRC soon... maybe they’ll add a bike lane??

    Hahahahahahah sorry I couldn’t even keep a straight face typing that
    Bwahaha.

    I'd be happy with a good crosswalk signal at the light and a ped bridge over the river somewhere behind the strip mall to connect to the trail.

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  29. #29
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    Bike lane should happen ,but a better option would be a suspension bridge behind Hawg Wild. And another at Avery creek road from DRC. It never hurts to ask.

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