Best Mountain Biking on the East Coast

Some of the best mountain biking on the east coast of the United States can be had in the Smoky Mountains. If you have not yet biked the trails of the Tsali Recreation Area, you have missed out! Tsali contains 40 miles of the best mountain biking trail imaginable. Tsali’s fast hardpacked singletrack, tight curves, and hilly passes will make your heart pound.

If the cycling doesn’t take your breath away, the view will. Tsali is some of the best mountain biking on the east coast, in part because of the outstanding views of Fontana Lake and the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. There is nothing like jumping into the clear cold waters of Fontana Lake after a workout on the trails of Tsali. And it’s close to the famous Appalachian Trail, so your non-biking family members can go for a hike while you tear up the trail. The super hardcore should come during the infamous 12 hours of Tsali Mountain Bike Race — that’s right, 12 straight hours of the most fun and challenging western North Carolina mountain biking.

The Newest of the Best Mountain Biking Trails in the Smoky Mountains

Come try out a new mountain biking trail in the Smoky Mountains! If you’ve come to the Smoky Mountains searching for the best mountain biking trails in the past, you may have missed out on the Jack Rabbit Mountain Trail System, opened in 2011. This fun 14-mile stacked loop mountain bike trail is located in Clay County in the Nantahala National Forest on the Shores of Lake Chatuge.

The Jack Rabbit Mountain Trail is open to bikers and hikers of all skill levels. Want to introduce your ‘lil bikers to the thrills of mountain biking? This is one of the best mountain biking trails for kids. The main central loop is easy and nearly level. And there is a short skill trail for beginners to practice technical skills.

Other Trails For the Best Mountain Biking Trips

  • Mountains to the Sea Trail — we recommend the Highlands portion of this trail, some of the best mountain biking through stands of old-growth forest in the country. The trailhead is at Old Bald Ridge on the Blue Ridge Parkway.
  • Mountain biking and road biking are not exclusive to the Smoky Mountains. The best mountain biking trips include a ride along the Blue Ridge Parkway or The Cherohala Skyway. All include absolutely spectacular views of mountain ranges, valleys, craggy bluffs, rivers and lakes.
  • The Flint Ridge Trail at NOC — a new 4.5-mile trail on NOC property with the technical trail as well as a rolling single track. Enjoy incredible views of the Nantahala Gorge.

The Best Mountain Biking Vacations for Couples

You fell in love on saddles, and you’ll ride into the sunset together. You’re a mountain biking couple. The Smoky Mountains is the perfect place for the best mountain biking vacations for couples: come for your honeymoon, anniversary trip, or romantic weekend getaway.

Bike the world-class trails and then come back to soak in a hot tub under the stars, or in front of the fireplace of your cozy cabin. There are hotels, cabins, and campgrounds near many trailheads—so you can roll out of bed, into your gear and get biking! We’ll help you find romantic accommodations perfect for mountain biking couples. Fall in love all over again on the best mountain biking vacation you’ve ever had.

NOC Outdoor Adventures
Stop by Nantahala Outdoor Center’s 500-acre adventure campus for mountain bike rentals! Take on Flint Ridge – miles of private trails at NOC, or head down the road to the nearby Tsali trail system.
13077 Hwy 19 West Bryson City, NC 28713 (828) 785-5108 Get Directions
Smoky Mountain Steel Horses
Smoky Mountain Indian Motorcycle. Specialty V-twin, Slingshot. Pre-owned Harley-Davidson Dealer. Sales, Rentals, service, apparel.
82 Locust Drive Waynesville, NC 28786 (828) 452-7276 Get Directions