Best area for epic single speed riding?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Best area for epic single speed riding?

    Where do you think is the best area in the USA for epic single speed riding?

    My vote is Pisgah because it has loads of technical single track. With good route planning you can put together some huge loops. From what I have ridden it seems that Pisgah is more single speed friendly than places like Bend, Park City, or Crested Butte.

    Is Pisgah the best or are there other places that I should put on my bucket list?
    Last edited by febikes; 10-22-2012 at 06:30 AM.

  2. #2
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  3. #3
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    Define "epic".

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    Quote Originally Posted by CB2 View Post
    Define "epic".
    In my mind epic rides are 6+ hours rides, great technical features, and wild lands. Mountains are good for epics and after all we ride mountain bikes. Routes with laps don't count for an "epic".

    Single speed bikes have a sweet spot with a narrow range of speeds depending on gearing. In a place like Crested Butte an epic ride will often involve some fairly long stretches on gravel roads. Riding in Pisgah is different because the trails seem to be more single speed friendly with shorter climbs that often involve hike-a-bike for everyone.

    At Crested Butte, I would bring a geared bike to avoid becoming the slow guy in my group. If the same group went to Pisgah I think the geared bike would not be needed because in Pisgah most trails are more single speed friendly and tend to turn everyone into a walker in the steep sections.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by cb2 View Post
    define "epic".
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    I think with the right inside information you can find an epic ride in most regions. The region I'm familiar with is the Northeast. Locally I can do a 60+ mile out and back w/ about 10% pavement (not exactly out and back since you take alternate trails North and South). The Same is true of the North South Trail in Rhode Island (75 miles each way). The hills are short and steep, and the single track is windy enough to equalize the speed.
    If I could justify being out on my bike for more than 8 hours while my kid is staring @ the computer, I could easily extend it to Robinson Park in Agawam MA for a 10 to 12 hour day.

  7. #7
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    Central and Northern VT should be on your bucketlist. SSUSA was in Stowe, VT this year and the riding is EPIC!

  9. #9
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    Syllamo Trails in north central Arkansas. Gears are a liability there. Trails are a perfect mix of flow, steep/punchy climbs, and techy rock gardens
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  10. #10
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    Maybe I'm different, but my "epic" ride would include lots of climbs, not just short climbs. This means lots of descents as well. I actually like some of those long, extended climbs. Scenery is also important. Hence, I like Colorado and Utah trails the best.

    What I don't consider "epic": flats and popular trails where you're scooting to the side every 30 yards to let some Schmoe and his pooch in a merino wool sweater by.

  11. #11
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    Phil's World Cortez, CO

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  12. #12
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    10 years ago this would have been considered an "epic". Now it has been become sort of ordinary; something to do before soccer practice.

    <iframe height='405' width='590' frameborder='0' allowtransparency='true' scrolling='no' src='http://app.strava.com/runs/26329817/embed/2e44052da10f48f17cb2de4266df5add66999835'></iframe>

  13. #13
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    The Brown County State Park Epic is fun, and very singlespeed friendly, done it several times:
    Brown County State Park | International Mountain Bicycling Association

    Tsali is boring compared to Brown County with the exception of the views of the lake on Tsali.

    Dupont Epic is fun on a singlespeed too.
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  14. #14
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    Any trail that starts with a bowl, and ends in a beer.
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Birdss View Post
    Any trail that starts with a bowl, and ends in a beer.
    Its not an epic ride, or even a good ride if it has to start with a bowl. Enjoy either or both after to reminisce sounds like a good idea.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andrea138 View Post
    Syllamo Trails in north central Arkansas. Gears are a liability there. Trails are a perfect mix of flow, steep/punchy climbs, and techy rock gardens
    Good to know. I passed by a couple of trailheads for Syllamo on my way to Blanchard Caverns last summer and plan to bring a bike the next time I'm out there visiting my in-laws. I'll make sure to bring the SS and visit when the temperature is below 105.
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  17. #17
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    +1 on Phil's World!
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  18. #18
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    Western Oregon. Colorado Trail.

    Not sure why I bothered answering, as the gearing puss out makes me wonder if you SS at all. Every trail is SS friendly.

    Quote Originally Posted by febikes View Post
    Single speed bikes have a sweet spot with a narrow range of speeds depending on gearing. In a place like Crested Butte an epic ride will often involve some fairly long stretches on gravel roads. Riding in Pisgah is different because the trails seem to be more single speed friendly with shorter climbs that often involve hike-a-bike for everyone.

  19. #19
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    I recently did the northern half of "The Womble" in Arkansas. I was on a SS Rigid geared 32/18 and had a blast. There was some long climbs but worth every minute of agony. If I had been able to change my gearing I think I would have been able to do more climbing. But I had just bought the bike and didn't have a chance to get some chain and a new cog before my trip. I definitely want to check out the Syllamo in the near future.

  20. #20
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    32x20 or 21 is a good choice for Syllamo. It looks like there have been some freeze advisories in the area lately, so the overgrowth should be dying off by now. If you're going to be there a few days, I'd recommend carrying an extra tire and a spoke or two. There's nothing out there as far as bike shops go, and you're likely to not see anyone else riding while you're there.
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  22. #22
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    +1 for Phil's World!

    There's an IMBA one in Maryland if you are looking for one on the East Coast...

  23. #23
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    I have heard good things about brown county and that it is SS friendly.

  24. #24
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    Definitely gonna get different answers from people with different tastes.

    "From what I have ridden it seems that Pisgah is more single speed friendly than places like... Park City"

    I did a hundie out in Park City in 2006 and was susrprised at the fact that most of the climbs were SS'able. 21,000 feet of climbing in 100 miles and almost all SS rideable.

    I tend to think of Pisgah as semi-unfriendly to SS'ing, although that's the place I do most of my "epic" riding. I've had great "epic" rides all over the country, so I think picking a bucket list should be done with consideration for what you like. I rode Fisher Creek back in July, and while pleasant it was not very technical. A great part of the country for technical riding on a SS where you can stay on the bike as opposed to next to it pushing would be Central PA (State College/Rothrock) or Harrisonburg, VA.

    Define "epic" and then go from there. Plenty of places you can go for "huge loops" but wouldn't be tops on my list for a road trip.
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  25. #25
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    Copper Harbor, MI is pretty epic and way fun on a Single Speed!

    The more recent media on CH paints the place out to be more "Flow" type trails, but they have everything from double track XC ski type trails to old school (litterally old) tight rough twisty stuff. The "Flow" type trails are the newest additions to the trail network along with the jump lines.

    Besides any place that doesn't have cell service is epic in today's world.

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