28 March, 2008

Southern Escape Day 6

We rolled out of the bunkhouse in the early evening, drove some of the Cohutta (more uneventful, unmemorable gravel) and made our way into Pisgah to meet some weekend warriors from some MTBR forum who were throwing a little gathering at Lower Cove Creek camping area. The upshot; The Extreme Tomato would be there, and JutRut was also there. We pulled in late, and it was evident, as it always is, that Yazoo wins the Party! Jonathan had long disappeared, and Jut was still going strong at the keg and preparing chocolate infused bananas in the hot coals of the fire, a snack designed to curb the munchies that seem to plague him everytime he’s out riding and camping. Odd. Post banana we called it a night, and Jut went looking for his tent, which apparently wasn’t where he left it. We found it upside down, blown up against a car, a discovery that caused some hushed laughter amongst the sleeping party losers around us. Bruce and I pulled out the bags and laid down by the fire, and grabbed some sleep. We woke with the sun on Friday and stoked the fire for a little warmth, Jut’s dog Judah was finally able to wake him, he made some coffee and we headed to Huddle House for the southern mountain bikers breakfast of champions. My final day of pushing, now 3 in a row, was to be fueled by a platter sized piece of country fried steak and eggs. We had a long Dupont enchainment ahead of us, and these guys know all the good stuff. Dupont is set up as a cartographer’s wet dream, eighty some trails, lots of colors on the map, intersections galore, and few trails lasting more than about 2 miles. Local knowledge is helpful here, and we hit all the best stuff that we could without going out looking for trouble. Highlights include Big Rock, Cedar Rock, Reasonover Creek, Airstrip, Bridal Veil falls, and the immaculately handbuilt Ridgeline. Ridgeline, ridden from the upper parking lot is, in itself, worth the trip, and probably worth turning around and doing again if you can muster anything from your legs.

Stats: 31.07 miles, 3:26:10 ride time, 5,843 ft climbed, 9.0 mph avg.

Trail Map: Click Here

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