Off-roading in Georgia

Week of October 15-21, 1998
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Off-roading in Georgia
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Off-roading in Georgia

By Amy Marr

Question: I’m looking for a great bike ride in Georgia, or a neighboring state — something similar to the Katy Trail in Missouri. Can you help?

Carol Jones
Decatur, Georgia

Adventure Adviser: Well, nothing quite as long or flat as the 185-miles of Katy Trail. But if you’re willing to work a bit, there are some fine options for short and stout rides. I’d say your best choice is the Bull Mountain Loop, nestled in the Chattahoochee Forest. This is a sweet and scenic single-track, winding up through thickets of mountain laurel, violets and wild azaleas. It’s a tough climb to the summit of Bull, but you’re rewarded with a sheer plunge down the other side. You can complement your ride with a jaunt on foot on the nearby Appalachian Trail, which starts a mere three miles away. To access Bull Mountain Loop, head 12 miles west of Dahlonega, and follow Forest Road 83 to the parking lot and trailhead. For more information, call Mountain Adventures Cyclery in Dahlonega (706-864-8525).

Just over the border in Tennessee is a great road ride along the Cherohala Skyway. Again, not quite as flat as the Katy but at 51 miles it’s no short amble. This relatively new swatch of paved road is a cyclist’s paradise. There are steady climbs, heady downhills and sweeping vistas of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. It’s a point-to-point ride from Tellico Plains, Tennessee, to Robinsville, North Carolina. Mountain View Bicycles (423-977-4200) can give you the full scoop.

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