31.8 miles
Distance
4,430 ft
Climb
-4,438 ft
Descent
4,846 ft
High Point

The classic Pisgah mountain bike ride. A tour of all the singletrack that you have read about, this loop could take 5 to 7 hours and is considered very difficult. Singletrack climbs, switchback descents and beautiful hand cut trails are what has put Brevard on the map as a destination.

Note: Access to this ride is found at Turkey Pen trailhead on Tukey Pen Rd., off N.C. 280 (Asheville Highway) at the Henderson and Transylvania County line. You may need to park at the bottom of the gravel road; it is rough and may be impassable for cars with low clearance.

Detailed Description
Bike Transylvania: Big Boy Pisgah Ride is a 32 mile moderately popular expert route located near Mills River North Carolina. This mountain bike only route. This route includes 19 trails. This route climbs 4,430 ft with a max elevation of 4,846 ft then descends -4,438 ft.
Local Trail Association
Local trail association
Pisgah Area SORBA (www.pisgahareasorba.org)
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54 Reviews & Comments

  • + 0
Mtbchick16 (Oct 20, 2022 at 16:53)
Rode this today from Squirrel Gap to FS 476. The suspension bridge is out, made for a frigid river crossing using the horse ford. Lots of leaves down but entire trail is rideable.
[Reply]
  • + 0
Mtbchick16 (Oct 20, 2022 at 16:53)
Rode this today from Squirrel Gap to FS 476. The suspension bridge is out, made for a frigid river crossing using the horse ford. Lots of leaves down but entire trail is rideable.
[Reply]
  • + 0
Mtbchick16 (Oct 20, 2022 at 16:53)
Rode this today from Squirrel Gap to FS 476. The suspension bridge is out, made for a frigid river crossing using the horse ford. Lots of leaves down but entire trail is rideable.
[Reply]
  • + 0
shinnyboy (Aug 24, 2022 at 10:35)
Rode this yesterday and have to confirm trail was so over grown and 20-30 small trees down.
stream crossing ok but the rest was brutal.
[Reply]
  • + 0
shinnyboy (Aug 24, 2022 at 10:35)
Rode this yesterday and have to confirm trail was so over grown and 20-30 small trees down.
stream crossing ok but the rest was brutal.
[Reply]
  • + 0
shinnyboy (Aug 24, 2022 at 10:35)
Rode this yesterday and have to confirm trail was so over grown and 20-30 small trees down.
stream crossing ok but the rest was brutal.
[Reply]
  • + 0
daceto817 (Jun 6, 2022 at 9:51)
Lots of fun as a descent, pretty much have to shuttle it unless you feel like hiking up Pilot Rock. Very similar feel to Squirrel Gap.
[Reply]
  • + 0
sunringlerider (Dec 4, 2021 at 15:38)
Trail Squirrel Gap
Solid meh, it’s a fun challenging trail. But for the effort of getting to the top, there are many better options to ride in Pisgah area.
[Reply]
  • + 0
sunringlerider (Dec 4, 2021 at 15:38)
Trail Squirrel Gap
Solid meh, it’s a fun challenging trail. But for the effort of getting to the top, there are many better options to ride in Pisgah area.
[Reply]
  • + 0
sunringlerider (Dec 4, 2021 at 15:34)
Very overgrown. The creek crossing are not a joke. Enough so that I would not recommend this trail at all. Many better options in Pisgah
[Reply]
  • + 0
brian1675 (Nov 23, 2021 at 13:42)
I have hiked this trail and it's not garbage. Riding it is a different story to a certain extent. Just depends on your level of love and dedication to being on a bike. The saying "Ride Your Own Ride" comes to mind.....
[Reply]
  • + 0
manogumr (Jul 25, 2021 at 13:16)
Steady climb from Bradley creek trail back up to yellow gap road. Relatively large rock/loosely packed gravel with grass most of the way up. Much of trail is in exposed sunlight during midday
[Reply]
  • + 1
mtbrdag (Jul 23, 2021 at 8:10)
I agree with all of the above. This would be a garbage hiking trail its in such bad shape. At least 20 creek crossings and 200+ downed trees. It is pretty scenery, but IF it were cleaned up, I'd only consider hiking due to the number of water crossings.
[Reply]
  • + 0
dvrkelly (Jun 2, 2021 at 22:01)
We
[Reply]
  • + 0
dvrkelly (Jun 2, 2021 at 22:01)
We
[Reply]
  • + 0
dvrkelly (Jun 2, 2021 at 22:01)
We
[Reply]
  • + 0
manglermixer (May 31, 2021 at 22:39)
There are sections of this that ride just fine. From the eastern end to Cantrell is great, just don’t miss the bridges. On the western end, squirrel to end is fine. It’s that middle section between Cantrell and western end of squirrel that’s kind of the no go zone.
[Reply]
  • + 0
manglermixer (May 31, 2021 at 22:39)
There are sections of this that ride just fine. From the eastern end to Cantrell is great, just don’t miss the bridges. On the western end, squirrel to end is fine. It’s that middle section between Cantrell and western end of squirrel that’s kind of the no go zone.
[Reply]
  • + 0
manglermixer (May 31, 2021 at 22:39)
There are sections of this that ride just fine. From the eastern end to Cantrell is great, just don’t miss the bridges. On the western end, squirrel to end is fine. It’s that middle section between Cantrell and western end of squirrel that’s kind of the no go zone.
[Reply]
  • + 0
josesanchez89 TMBA (Mar 17, 2021 at 11:44)
Trail Squirrel Gap
A Pisgah classic. If you love Mt biking ride squirrel gap.
[Reply]
  • + 0
josesanchez89 TMBA (Mar 17, 2021 at 11:44)
Trail Squirrel Gap
A Pisgah classic. If you love Mt biking ride squirrel gap.
[Reply]
  • + 0
josesanchez89 TMBA (Mar 17, 2021 at 11:39)
I've only ridden up, then down pilot rock but I will be there in May and plan on riding up pilot cove/slate rock the down Laurel. Can't wait because I'm envisioning an epic downhill
[Reply]
  • + 0
phalley (Sep 27, 2020 at 8:24)
Not long, but a very fun and flowy descent
[Reply]
  • + 0
phalley (Sep 27, 2020 at 8:24)
Not long, but a very fun and flowy descent
[Reply]
  • + 0
phalley (Sep 27, 2020 at 8:15)
Do yourself a favor and take Bradley Creek Rd to connect to Yellow Gap Rd. With the numerous river crossings, overgrown shrubbery, and down trees it's more adventure than bike ride where you'll spend as much or more time off your bike than on it
[Reply]
  • + 0
benfin (Jul 30, 2020 at 7:21)
Trail Pilot Rock
Never try riding up this. ????
[Reply]
  • + 0
wetzejt (Jul 28, 2020 at 19:26)
Trail Pilot Rock
Did this trail today. Seriously the hardest I’ve ever done to date. A truly black diamond.
[Reply]
  • + 0
dindillion (Jul 28, 2020 at 16:21)
Extremely overgrown and filled with tons of mud bogs from horses. Also has like 6-7 deep river crossings that are not rideable.
[Reply]
  • + 0
SCxXxMTB (Jan 31, 2020 at 10:28)
Trail Pilot Rock
This trail is epic, no other way to put it. Go ride it.
[Reply]
  • + 0
thebaldeagle SAMBA (Oct 16, 2019 at 14:38)
Great technical downhill. Can be paired with Cantrell Creek, Squirrel and Mullinax to create a great loop.
[Reply]
  • + 1
BradyEssary (Oct 14, 2019 at 10:04)
Trail Pilot Rock
This past weekend was my first time riding Pilot Rock. While the rocks and descent weren't a surprise, the amount and difficulty of the switchbacks did surprise me, as did how tight the trail was from the brush. The last hike-a-bike section towards the top of Laurel Mtn was no joke either.
[Reply]
  • + 0
swagner2 (May 20, 2019 at 13:02)
DONT RIDE. MASSIVE EROSION AND OVERGROWTH. Trail is destroyed past Cantrell connector (coming downhill).
Trail crosses river 10+ times. Overgrowth will leave you crawling along valley floor. Not riding. I’ve ridden this trail in the past and it was rideable in the day. But now it’s not maintained at all. You will severely regret not heading others warnings.
[Reply]
  • + 0
swagner2 (May 20, 2019 at 13:02)
DONT RIDE. MASSIVE EROSION AND OVERGROWTH. Trail is destroyed past Cantrell connector (coming downhill).
Trail crosses river 10+ times. Overgrowth will leave you crawling along valley floor. Not riding. I’ve ridden this trail in the past and it was rideable in the day. But now it’s not maintained at all. You will severely regret not heading others warnings.
[Reply]
  • + 0
swagner2 (May 20, 2019 at 13:02)
DONT RIDE. MASSIVE EROSION AND OVERGROWTH. Trail is destroyed past Cantrell connector (coming downhill).
Trail crosses river 10+ times. Overgrowth will leave you crawling along valley floor. Not riding. I’ve ridden this trail in the past and it was rideable in the day. But now it’s not maintained at all. You will severely regret not heading others warnings.
[Reply]
  • + 1
LegitBiker9000 (May 10, 2019 at 8:30)
Trail Pilot Rock
This is another great classic Pisgah, i would argue more difficult than what riders experience on the lower sections, however, just like every other pisgah trail, you get soaking wet. Also there are a few hike-a-bike sections, but overall amazing trail!
[Reply]
  • + 0
gebby111 (Mar 27, 2019 at 3:47)
Can confirm previous comments.... made the mistake of trying to link up squirrel to Cantrell and got abused by the forest.. so bring a machete and extra water and food if that’s what you’re in to
[Reply]
  • + 0
gebby111 (Mar 27, 2019 at 3:47)
Can confirm previous comments.... made the mistake of trying to link up squirrel to Cantrell and got abused by the forest.. so bring a machete and extra water and food if that’s what you’re in to
[Reply]
  • + 0
gebby111 (Mar 27, 2019 at 3:47)
Can confirm previous comments.... made the mistake of trying to link up squirrel to Cantrell and got abused by the forest.. so bring a machete and extra water and food if that’s what you’re in to
[Reply]
  • - 1
LegitBiker9000 (Oct 27, 2018 at 15:01)
Best trail ever! Lol April fools
[Reply]
  • - 1
LegitBiker9000 (Oct 27, 2018 at 15:01)
Best trail ever! Lol April fools
[Reply]
  • + 1
LegitBiker9000 (Aug 11, 2018 at 13:01)
You're going to be hiking through atleast nine rivers. But if you can shred through rivers, then i would say just send it.
[Reply]
  • + 1
LegitBiker9000 (Aug 11, 2018 at 13:01)
You're going to be hiking through atleast nine rivers. But if you can shred through rivers, then i would say just send it.
[Reply]
  • + 1
LegitBiker9000 (Aug 11, 2018 at 13:01)
You're going to be hiking through atleast nine rivers. But if you can shred through rivers, then i would say just send it.
[Reply]
  • + 0
slayersxc17 (Jul 4, 2018 at 3:51)
So this trail is awesome. Wondering have any of you ever rode this goin downhill. I’ve only ever climbed. Its 6.5 miles, 2500’ descent. That’s a pretty sweet recipe, yeah not steep, but still.
[Reply]
  • + 1
josesanchez89 TMBA (Jul 1, 2018 at 14:42)
One of my favorite trails in the PNF. A true backcountry experience with beautiful vistas and gnarly terrain. In my opinion it's the definition of what mountain biking is in it's purest form. There is some hike a bike toward the top that is both mentally and physically challenging but the view from the top of pilot rock is awesome. I read some comments saying that the trail needs work and needs rock work to make it rideable but disagree, just leave it alone and have fun.
[Reply]
  • + 1
mikemcnoskill (Jun 16, 2018 at 16:04)
I think the previous comment was really about this trail. It’s very overgrown and more hiking than riding.
[Reply]
  • + 1
mikemcnoskill (Jun 16, 2018 at 16:04)
I think the previous comment was really about this trail. It’s very overgrown and more hiking than riding.
[Reply]
  • + 1
mikemcnoskill (Jun 16, 2018 at 16:04)
I think the previous comment was really about this trail. It’s very overgrown and more hiking than riding.
[Reply]
  • + 1
jastrain (May 6, 2018 at 12:18)
Do not ride from squirrel gap to Cantrell Creek. This is a horse trail. It is very over grown, full of mud pits, downed logs, and about a dozen deep water crossings.
[Reply]
  • + 1
jastrain (May 6, 2018 at 12:18)
Do not ride from squirrel gap to Cantrell Creek. This is a horse trail. It is very over grown, full of mud pits, downed logs, and about a dozen deep water crossings.
[Reply]
  • + 1
jastrain (May 6, 2018 at 12:18)
Do not ride from squirrel gap to Cantrell Creek. This is a horse trail. It is very over grown, full of mud pits, downed logs, and about a dozen deep water crossings.
[Reply]
  • + 1
tonylapy (Dec 3, 2016 at 16:41)
Rode this trail a day or two after a good rain. Heading up to Squirrel Gap, 17 horses and their riders made us pull over and wait. What those 68 hooves and piles of droppings did to that trail was a shame. Badly eroded in places, couldn't wait to see the Squirrel Gap sign.
[Reply]
  • + 1
charmiller (Aug 26, 2016 at 12:19)
This trail is not technically open and includes about 20 creek crossings you have to wade.
[Reply]
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Details

  • Riding area
  • Primary Activity
    Mountain Bike
  • Difficulty rating
    Black Diamond
  • Ridelogs
    6
More Stats for Bike Transylvania: Big Boy Pisgah Ride mountain bike route
  • Altitude change
    -9 ft
  • Altitude min
    2,341 ft
  • Altitude start
    2,633 ft
  • Altitude end
    2,625 ft
  • Grade
    -0%
  • Grade max
    -59.9%
  • Grade min
    59.9%
  • Distance climb
    15 miles
  • Distance down
    15 miles
  • Distance flat
    2 miles
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Chunky Pilot Rock, Pisgah
Chunky Pilot Rock, Pisgah
trail: Pilot Rock
8:53 | 295 | comments: 0 | favs:
Dec 6, 2021
2017.10.06 Squirrel Gap downhill
2017.10.06 Squirrel Gap downhill
1:53 | 251 | comments: 0 | favs:
Mar 19, 2021

Recent Trail Reports Along Route

statustraildateconditiondescription
South Mills River
Oct 23, 2022 @ 6:27pm
Oct 23, 2022
Along the river, many trees down. One pile of downed trees is large and difficult to get around. (There, I lost the trail for ten minutes, then found it again.) Heavy overgrowth of rhododendrons everywhere along the river. Something like a dozen walk through river crossings are required. It really sucks.
Squirrel Gap
Jul 28, 2022 @ 12:18pm
Jul 28, 2022
Just one tree across the trail, about halfway to Cantrell from Mullinax. Slick, some moist spots. Normal mid-summer conditions.
Laurel Mountain
Jun 26, 2022 @ 6:55am
Jun 26, 2022
Yellow Gap Road
Jun 20, 2022 @ 1:07pm
Jun 20, 2022
Fallen Timber hazard
Pilot Rock
Apr 22, 2022 @ 9:10am
Apr 22, 2022
Rough and loose
more reports »
  • By BikeTransylvania & contributors
  • #3694 - 1,754 views