Seek: A Mountain Ride Find: A Ride to Remember
Diamond Back Motorcycle and Sports Car Loop: Motorcycleroads.com call this ride a “must if you like curves and twisties…competes with the Dragon’s Tail for curves.” Although only about 12-miles long, this exciting sportscar and motorcycle route features at least 190 curves (some say as many as 200) as it links NC 226 to the Blue Ridge Parkway.
Riding or driving the Diamondback through Pisgah National Forest not only takes you alongside heart stopping views of the Blue Ridge Mountains, it is a refreshing climb with as much as a 12-degree temperature drop and a great escape from summer humidity.
Generally traveling north-south, 226A is entirely within McDowell and Mitchell counties. The Diamondback parallels the Blue Ridge Parkway along much of its northern segment.
NC Hwy 261/Roan Mountain: Fantastic views from the overlook atop Roan mountain at the NC/TN line. You basically climb Roan Mountain on side and back don the other. Great ride in the late spring and early fall.
The Devil’s Whip: “Sixteen miles of pure adrenaline and challenge.” Hwy 80 is known as one of the most difficult roads around. The closest paved access to Mt. Mitchell via the Blue Ridge Parkway, The Devil’s Whip/NC 80 is one of those terrific roads.
“Whether you choose to ride it Northbound (from the intersection of US Highway 70 to the Blue Ridge Parkway and Mt. Mitchell and 226A/The Diamondback) or Southbound (from the BRP and The Diamondback to Highway 70), you’ll be treated to a difficult, technically challenging drive. It’s tight, twisting and requires all your concentration and skills. You ascend/descend almost 2,000 feet in just 12 miles. The drive includes hairpin turns guaranteed to knock your socks off and unforgettable twisties!”