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Best of DuPont

 4.7 (108)

18.2 Miles 29.3 Kilometers



1,854' 565 m


-1,856' -566 m



Avg Grade (2°)


Max Grade (12°)

3,046' 928 m


2,314' 705 m


Shared By craig campbell


All Clear 6 days ago
Some Mud History

Getting forecast...

Some of the best singletrack in DuPont State Forest in a nice loop.

craig campbell

Dogs Unknown

Features -none-


This route includes some of the best DuPont has to offer from a flowy perspective, but you'll have to work at it with the climbs throughout the route.

Need to Know

There are three creek crossings in this route, but in most cases, there are rocks that allow you to hop across without getting soaked.


There’s two options for starting this ride, with Option 1 being what the GPS uses. Arguably, Option 2 adds a little more singletrack and removes the climb up Lake Imaging Road.
Option 1: (The way the route was recorded and if you’re following GPS, the way it’ll take you.)
This route starts with a nice warm-up climb up Lake Imaging road. Take a right on to Hilltop Loop.
Option 2: (And arguably a bit more fun and interesting)
Start out on Lake Imaging Road going around the pond to the right. The first trail entrance to the left is Jim Branch. Take a left on Jim Branch. You’ll have the option of bypassing the tough rock garden in favor of smoother singletrack if you wish. Jim Branch is a 1.2 mile trail, which will be a climb in this direction. At the top of Jim Branch, take a right on Issac Heath. Issac Heath is only .5 miles long and will lead you onto Locust Trail. Take a right at the end of Locust Trail where you’ll immediately pick up Hilltop Loop directly straight in front of you.
---- same from here ----
Hilltop Loop is a fun little loop that will spit you back out on Lake Imaging Rd. A short ride on Buck Forest Rd to Conservation Rd, and you'll take Pitch Pine Trail over to Lake Dense Trail. At the end of this you're back on Conservation Rd where you'll climb a pretty steep road up to the Airstrip. From Airstrip, take Fawn Lake Rd over to Mine Mountain Trail. The start of Mine Mountain will be climbing, but the descent down to Fawn Lake parking area is a blast. You'll pass Fawn Lake parking lot on Fawn Lake Rd down to Conservation Rd. Cross over Conservation Rd to Reasonover Creek Trail. At the bottom of this, you'll have to cross your first creek.

The next 2.5m is a climb up Reasonover Creek to Turkey Knob Rd & following Turkey Knob Rd over to Turkey Knob Trail (newer trail). Turkey Knob Trail is IMO the best trail of this loop.

The end of Turkey Knob will dump you out at Briery Fork trail where you'll find your second creek crossing and climb out for a while crossing over Joanna Rd to Grassy Creek Trail.

A bit more climbing through Wintergreen Falls and Tarklin Branch up to Guion Farm parking area over to Hickory Mountain Rd. From Hickory Mountain Rd, you'll take a left on Hooker Creek Trail, which is a super fast section, but can be dangerous if there are loose rocks on the trail. At the end of Hooker Creek, you'll cross your third and final creek crossing. After the crossing, you'll climb back out to Ridgeline Trail. Ridgeline probably doesn't need an introduction, but this is a super fast downhill that will finish your ride.

If you'd like to add some length to this already burly ride, add The Best of Dupont: Burnt Mountain/ Cedar Rock Big Rock Figure 8 to your outing.

Here is turn by turn directions with distances:

Start from Lake Imaging Parking Lot (distance in miles)

Option 1:
- Start on Lake Imaging Rd (1.0)
- Right on Hilltop Loop (1.0)
Option 2:
- Start on Lake Imaging Rd (0.4)
- Left on Jim Branch (1.2)
- Right on Issac Heath (0.5)
- Right (more straight than anything) on Locust Trail (0.4)
- Right on Lake Imaging Rd and immediately onto Hilltop Loop (1.0)
---- end options. Same from here on out ----
- Right on Lake Imaging Rd (0.1)
- Right on Buck Forest Rd (0.5)
- Left on Conservation Rd (0.1)

- Left on Pitch Pine Trail (1.0)
- Right on Three Lakes Trail [may be called Dense Lake Trail] (0.7)
- Left on Conservation Rd climb road up to Airstrip [avoid Shortcut Trail] (1.0)
- Right on Fawn Lake Rd (0.1)
- Right on Mine Mountain Trail (1.4)

- Right on Fawn Lake Rd (0.2)
- Cross over Conservation Rd to Reasonover Creek Trail (1.2)
- Right on Turkey Knob Trail (3.3)
- Right on Briery Fork trail (0.4)
- Cross over Joanna Rd to Grassy Creek Trail (1.5)

- Right on Sandy Trail (0.1)
- Left on Wintergreen Falls Trail (0.4)
- Right on Tarklin Branch Rd (0.8)
- Left on Guion Farm Connector (0.4)
- Cross over Buck Forest Rd to Hickory Mountain Rd (0.3)

- Left on White Pine Trail (0.2)


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Your Check-Ins


Jul 23, 2018
MIchael Garber
confirm day
Jul 20, 2018
Aries Miclat
Wow! 20mi
Jul 15, 2018
Amy White
Trail is in great shape. Fun flow loop with gravel road climbs. 18mi
Jul 9, 2018
Stephen Hatfield
Jul 6, 2018
Ryan Barnes
Sick nasty 25mi
Jul 5, 2018
Dan Peterson
Good ride, rained hard last 5 miles.
Jul 4, 2018
Marcin Gluc
Jul 3, 2018
Bo Adams

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Trail Ratings

  4.7 from 108 votes


  4.7 from 108 votes
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rmap 01  
This is an excellent baseline loop that can be modified to best suit the rider's needs. First off, if you are committed to riding this route you cannot miss the opportunity to both take in - and ride - AirStrip. Yes, it requires re-climbing Lake Imaging but the downhill is worth it. A shout out to Grassy Creek Trail (fun at speed) and, as everyone agrees, Ridgeline is an adrenaline rush! Aug 26, 2017
Just rode this yesterday. By far the best overall riding in pisgah forest. whoever posted the GPX file, worked flawless. Never got lost or off track. Thanks!! Sep 4, 2017
Make sure to add some miles and hit some of the other trails. Rocky Ridge Trail is a great one to add to this loop, it's a steep climb up a fire road to reach the trailhead but worth it for a long descent, and then it's easy to get back onto this course. Lake Imaging is also a nice loop towards the end if you wanna add an extra 1.5 miles or so before flying down the ridgeline. Apr 28, 2018

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