An avid mountain biker knows that there are all different kinds of thrills about different types of mountain biking terrain. But most mountain bikers would agree that there is just something so splendid about the mountain biking terrains of the east coast. Here are a few locations that are a must see.

Brevard

Brevard is home to hundreds of miles of the most technical backcountry singletrack anywhere, gorgeous Appalachian Mountain views, and more mountain biking infrastructure (including bike shops, rentals, guiding, races–you name it) than you can even take advantage of.

Must-ride trails include Dupont State ForestLaurel Mountain, and Black Mountain. But the thing is, once you venture deep into the heart of Pisgah National Forest–where most of the best mountain biking is found–you’ll realize that all of these trails, which are generally referred to as self-contained rides, are really incredibly interconnected, creating a trail system of massive breadth and a mind-blowing array of ride combinations.

Dupont State Forest

Dupont State Forest is located roughly 12 miles from downtown Brevard, and it is a truly massive forest with 80 (or more) miles of trails. While many of the trails in Dupont are beginner-friendly, they are interspersed with numerous advanced trails, making it difficult to plan a true beginner singletrack route in this complex trail network. However, one trail that’s a must ride–whether you’re a beginner or an expert–is Ridgeline.

Ridgeline is a classic beginner flow trail, with incredible berms, rollers, and swoopiness that riders of all levels can enjoy. In fact, it’s so good that it was voted the #2 flow trail in the nation in our recent poll.

It’s also possible to create a 7-mile loop that includes Ridgeline from the Lake Imaging Trailhead (or 5 miles if you cut off the optional Hickory Mountain Loop). To complete this loop, head down the gated dirt road from the trailhead, passing the bottom of the Ridgeline Trail, and turning left to climb Jim Branch (hint: there’s an easier ride around of the initial rock garden if you bear hard left). Take a left on Buck Forest Road, a left on White Pine Trail, and a left on Hooker Creek Trail, and you’re at the top of Ridgeline. Add on the entertaining Hickory Mountain loop at the top for some bonus miles, then bomb down this excellent, beginner-friendly flow trail!

Rider: Maureen Gaffney. Photo: Alec Cervenka.