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Wednesday, 26 April 2017 14:25

Pedal the mountains

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Western North Carolina’s rural roads have drawn their fair share of cyclists who are ready to roll. Weekly rides are underway throughout the region, offering seasoned riders and new converts alike the chance to get pedaling.

Macon County

A ride leaves at 5:30 p.m. Wednesdays from Smoky Mountain Bicycles. Routes vary with distances typically 15-25 miles. Road bikes only. A no drop ride. Organized by Smoky Mountain Bicycles, 828.369.2881 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

A ride leaves at 8 a.m. on Saturdays beginning in June from South Macon Elementary School. Routes vary with distances typically 15-25 miles. Road bikes only. A no drop ride. Organized by Smoky Mountain Bicycles, 828.369.2881 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Jackson County

A 25-mile ride covering the back roads from Sylva to Balsam leaves at 6 p.m. Tuesdays from Motion Makers Bicycle Shop in Sylva. The route includes flat stretches, lots of climbing and a descent on the return of the out-and-back ride, which includes 1,600 feet of elevation gain. Organized by Motion Makers, 828.586.6925.

Haywood County

An easy ride aiming to help people ease into a healthier lifestyle through cycling is offered Thursday mornings in the Canton area, typically covering 8-10 miles. Road bikes are preferred and helmets are required. Nobody will be left behind. A partnership of Bicycle Haywood N.C. and the Blue Ridge Bike Club. For specific start times and locations, contact Michele Trantham, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

A ride for cyclists at the intermediate level and above will be offered at 6 p.m. Thursdays, with starting points alternating between the Waynesville Recreation Center and the Canton Recreation Park. The season will start April 27 with a ride leaving from Waynesville. Cyclists regroup as necessary and typically cover about 20 miles over the course of an hour and a half. Bob Clark, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Buncombe County

A beginner-friendly social ride for women will begin at 6:15 p.m. Mondays from the Bent Creek Ledford Parking Lot, covering 5-8 miles of mountain bike trails. Organized by Motion Makers Bicycle Shop. 828.633.2227.

A training ride for women who know how to handle a mountain bike but want to go faster will start at 6:15 p.m. Wednesdays from the Ledford parking lot at Bent Creek. The rides will cover 8-12 miles and use more technical trails than the beginner’s ride. Organized by Motion Makers Bicycle Shop. 828.633.2227.

New this year is the Sunday Gravel Ride, which will leave from Motion Makers in Asheville at 8 a.m. Sundays all summer for a 40-mile ride on paved and gravel roads to Oskar Blues Brewery in Brevard. After enjoying a beverage in the tap room, participants will get a free ride back to the shop on the Oskar Blues Trolley, leaving at 12:45 p.m. Organized by Motion Makers Bicycle Shop. 828.633.2227.

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