Tag Archives: Atlanta

New Section: Routes

A lot of the stuff I add to the website are things that I would want for myself. For example, my Climbs section was started because I was spending a lot of time looking for interesting roads to climb when training for my first Mitchell. It grew from there.

The Routes section came from the same place. When I am in the Blue Ridge area, I often don’t have time to seek out group rides to show me around. I am always looking for convenient routes that I can take by myself. I find a lot of them on the internet, and some I make for myself. It would have been amazing had there been a single resource where I could find them all. If I cannot find it, why not create it?

This section was conceived a few months ago when I was training for my second Mitchell. It would have been too time consuming to put together a list of cue sheets like the Blue Ridge Bicycle Club has done to perfection. Instead I decided to use newer technology and use RideWithGPS links. Because people all over use this software, the content is vast and limitless. It also allows people to view the route on a map, see the elevation profile, and download it to their GPS device.

To begin, I asked a few friends if I could use theirs. Special thanks go to Neil Turner, Michael Powell, Scott Baker, John McSwain, and Jeff Dilcher for providing a starting point.

As of right now, we have routes that begin in Spartanburg, North Greenville, Brevard, Sylva, Tryon, Atlanta, and the North Georgia Mountains. In time we will add plenty more.

I am looking for a good source of content for routes out all over the Southeast, but I would specifically like to find some from Asheville, Boone, and Roanoke. If you know of anyone who creates these for your town, please send them my way.

Keep an eye on this section as I expect it to grow. Keep in mind that there is danger in undertaking any of these routes. You’ll notice a disclaimer on every page for a reason. Do your research and make sure you are equipped before trying these. While some are easy, others are epic rides that few people can accomplish on their own.

Steep Climbs Routes

South Carolina Routes
North Carolina Routes
Georgia Routes

Atlanta Group Ride

I found myself out of town again, in dire need of some cardio to carry me through the holidays. Fortunately this time I was traveling to Atlanta, a major metropolis with a vibrant cycling community. After doing some research, I found a bike shop (a very cool one, I might add) that puts on local bike rides. I joined for their ride on the morning of Christmas eve.

They had two rides planned. The long ride was ‘beyond Six Flags,’ which is a 50+ mile out-and-back ride to Campbellton that, as you would guess, skirts by the Six Flags amusement park. From what I understood from talking with other riders, this is usually a well-attended faster-paced ride. In good weather, they said the ride could have as many as 50 riders. That would not be the case on a frosty Christmas eve. The alternate ride is a 22-mile jaunt around the hilly neighborhoods of Atlanta. Both groups ride together for the early going and then they split after a few miles.

Needing a good workout, my preference was for the Six Flags ride. The turnout was the problem. I followed along and noticed that hardly anyone turned to Six Flags at the split. The shorter in-town ride it would be, but I found that what it lacked in miles, it made up for in challenge.

Atlanta has hills, lots of them. The entire ride was up and down, which was perfect for me. There were a few lengthy climbs and some short and steep rollers, the steepest of which was around 12%. On top of the that, the route took you through a lot of nice neighborhoods with million-dollar houses, around a number of friendly parks, and had some delightful declines along with the grueling climbs. Simply put, the ride was a blast.

I have to commend the community on the way they orchestrated the ride. There were two ride leaders and at crucial intersections, they would block traffic on both sides. This was unusual, but made me feel a lot more comfortable than I would otherwise be riding through foreign neighborhoods in another city. The group separated here and there, which is to be expected, but waited at major intersections and after big climbs. This allowed us to mostly ride as a group.

As I could tell from my Strava output that this route is usually the Wednesday night sprint route. Now that sounds like a blast.