Cyclists in North Carolina enjoy the luxury of having access to a variety of road and trails, both scenic and challenging. However, if you are new resident, or if you are new to cycling entirely, you may not know where to begin your aerobic endeavors, as there are many options to choose from.
To help narrow your search, here are a few of the best cycling locations in North Carolina.
Kings Mountain Ramble
Connecting two of North Carolina’s state parks and a national military park, Kings Mountain Ramble encapsulates a mixed bag of riding opportunities. The ride is described as “pleasant, but hilly” as cyclists venture from the state’s southern sector to the northern portion of South Carolina. A revolving door of farm lands and forests keep the scenery fresh.
Hatteras Island provides a scenic 25-mile ride along coastal North Carolina 12, “the only major road” on the island. However, much of the ride is typically uninterrupted by any significant traffic or buildings, instead offering an enduring view of the ocean and the Pamlico Sound.
Orange County Ramble
Unlike the Kings Mountain Ramble, the Orange County Ramble is touted as a relaxing ride with few turns or otherwise harrowing terrain. After riders have left the town of Carrboro, they are able to escape into a peaceful series of quiet roads through North Carolina’s dairy country. The route is particularly popular, so expect to see fellow cyclists along the way.
Though somewhat challenging in its terrain, Hanging Rock is yet another incredibly scenic course. The route begins in the south, taking riders toward Danbury before beginning a climb over twisting hills. This stretch is not easy by any means, but it also offers distraction in the form of rustic log homes and old tobacco farms. Low traffic is also a huge benefit.
Linn Cove Viaduct
Linn Cove Viaduct offers riders a “heavenly” experience across mountainsides along the Blue Ridge Parkway, creating a sensation of floating above Linn Cove. A gradual seven-mile ascent at Julian Price Memorial Park supplements this euphoric period with a healthy dose of rugged challenge.