The High Country has become the perfect place for cyclists to roam through all the scenery and trails it has to offer. Many locals find themselves riding around in their own neighborhoods, through downtown and even competing in races.
In the High Country, the most used county for cycling would have to be Watauga, and more specifically, the town of Boone. Boone offers both the mountainous and flat road trails that cyclists seek and it also provides different programs and shops to help get you on the seat.
Boone Bike & Touring is a bike shop located at 774 East King Street and it offers road, mountain, cyclocross, commuter and urban, children’s, BMX and electric artist bikes.
They also provide full service repair, wheels, parts, accessories, shoes and clothing.
Brands include Trek and Specialized and repairs take a day or less.
With the easy access to the Blue Ridge Parkway, cyclists in the High Country can enjoy anything from woodsy trails to trails on top of a mountain.
Boone Bike partners with local cycling groups to provide information on rides and events, such as the Boone Area Cyclists Club and Appalachian State Cycling Group Rides. Many of these events begin when time changes and end when time falls back.
Boone Area Cyclists Club was founded in 2009 and it offers rides for cyclists of all ages, abilities, and styles of riding — commuters, mountain bikers, road cyclists, leisure riders, and anyone else who just likes to ride bikes.
The Watauga Leisure Biking club is also available to those who plan to ride “for the fun of it,” however, like many others, they have placed a hold on their rides until they deem it safe in regards to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Trails in the Boone and High Country area include Greenway Trail, which offers mostly flat dirt and paved rides, ranging from around one to three miles each, The Watauga River Road Ride in Valle Crucis with a length of 8 miles along the river and a mostly paved 150-foot gain and a 10 mile ride on Railroad Grade Road in Todd with no elevation gain.
Lansing offers the Creeper Trail Park with nearly a one mile loop if you’re looking for an easy and smooth ride. Blowing Rock features the Lower China Creek Loop, a 3.9 mile moderate loop with a single 250-foot gain dirt trail.
For the cyclists who wish to explore strenuous trails, they can ride the Yancey Ridge Loop located in the Pisgah National Forest with 8.2 miles of dirt road and a 1,100-foot gain. They can also go on the Table Rock Loop in the Linville Gorge Wilderness Area, spanning 26.2 miles of dirt and paved roads with a 2,450-foot gain.
For more information on cycling in the High Country and trail recommendations, call Boone Bike at (828) 262-5750.