Yesterday, a group of us headed up the the North Georgia mountains to lead a group of riders through the Pinhoti trails in Ellijay. The morning started off cold at the cars which meant the ride temperatures would be perfect. Luckily, it had rained in the area 24 hours before, so the trail was tacky and dust free.
The leaves have started to fall a little bit early in the area this year. I think this is due to the lack of rain we have had recently, but they didn’t swarm the trail yet. With perfect temps and trail conditions…it was primed for a perfect beginning of fall ride.
On the menu for the day was a combination of Pinhoti 1, 2 and 3 to equal out around 25-27 miles of sweet singletrack. The ride started out great. We were just a little bit cold in the parking lot, but the sun was out and things were starting to warm up.
Pinhoti 1 starts at the fork of the Bear Mountain trail. You start climbing straight out of the gate with several false summits until you finally get to the top. From the top of the trail, you bomb down tight single track cut into the ridge line until you dump out at the bottom. Everything was perfect, fast and flowy. On to P2!
Pinhoti 2 is much of the same…climb to the top to bomb down. The P2 downhill is a Georgia legend. This smooth singletrack dh shoots you in and out of tight trees that really catch your attention. That combined with water bars on ridge line greatness makes this dh one of GA’s best. Once again…everything was perfect and fast.
Pinhoti 3 is a different beast all together. Known for its tight switchbacks, P3 is not a simple up and down. It really has 2 peaks that make you climb and descend switchbacks in both directions. My legs had enough 3/4 of the way through due to sitting in a car hours on end all week long. Cramping set in and I knew it was time to take it easy and shoot some pictures so I wouldn’t ruin the downhill to the end.
At the end of this ride we hung out at a nearby camping/lodging site where many in the group were staying over the weekend. Nothing better than a warm fire surrounded by friends sharing mountain biking stories.
Great weekend and a great ride. I can’t wait for the next one.