South Fork Loop

Ellijay

An isolated singletrack loop at the Pinhoti Trail's northern terminus.

Mountain Biking Moderate

Distance
11 km
Ascent
353 m
Descent
353 m
Low Point
756 m
High Point
998 m
Gradient
VIEW ON MAP
South Fork Loop Map

Description

This isolated singletrack loop utilizes the northernmost section of the vaunted Pinhoti Trail, along with the relatively obscure South Fork Trail and part of the neighboring gravel road.

While most of the Pinhoti along this section is relatively doubletracky from the beginning, narrowing down to singletrack in a few spots, the South Fork trail offers delightful singletrack buried deep in the North Georgia mountains. The not-too-steep trail flows up and down as it roughly follows a stream, with mostly smooth, flowy singletrack punctuated by root webs, the occasional rock garden, and a few boggy spots.

While the loop looks straightforward on a map, this ride is extremely remote in Southeastern USA terms. It takes a lot of driving (or miles and miles of pedaling) to access the trailhead, and once out on the trail, you’re not likely to see another living soul.

The renowned rowdy ride on Mountaintown Creek is located nearby, but even Mountaintown is slightly more accessible since it ultimately pops out on Gates Chapel Road at the bottom. South Fork, on the other hand, is tucked away high up in the mountains and way back on a gravel road.

The point is this: this isolated singletrack will provide a beautiful, solitary mountain bike ride through dense forest in the Cohutta Mountains. But if something goes wrong, be prepared to fend for yourself.

Difficulty

Moderate

Mostly stable trail tread with some variability, with unavoidable obstacles 8in/20cm tall or less. Other obstacles such as rock gullies and steep sections may exist. Ideal for lower intermediate riders.

Medium Exposure

2 out of 4

The trail contains some obstacles such as outcroppings and rock which could cause injury.

Remoteness

4 out of 4

In the high mountains or remote conditions, all individuals must be completely autonomous in every situation.

Best time to visit

February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November

Features

  • Flow
  • Technical
  • Road sections
  • Roots
  • Rock Gardens

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area