ElevationAscent: 395' 120 m
Descent: -374' -114 m
High: 1,615' 492 m
Low: 1,354' 413 m
GradeAvg Grade: 4% (2°)
Max Grade: 26% (15°)
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“One of the most challenging and rewarding trails in Georgia, the River Loop has it all.”— Larry Vorpahl
Electric Mountain Bikes Unknown
After the first small incline, the road will have a singletrack fork off to the right, don't go there, stay to the left on the service road and continue up the hill. At the top of the hill you'll have a really nice view of the mountains and be able to get some speed through the wildlife opening (big, long, open field).
Continue straight ahead and you'll enter the woods for about a mile on some rooty and twisty singletrack before coming to the very technical downhill. The downhill is steep, extremely technical, and consists of lots of roots and rocks. For the expert rider, this downhill is the best part of the loop. For the intermediate rider, this is where you come to be an expert. For all others, you may want to walk your bike down this hill, you'll know when you get there.
Once at the bottom, take a step off the trail and you are at one of the most beautiful spots on the Cartecay River, great photo area. The trail continues along the river with no real contour in mind and just kinda goes wherever they felt like putting it 40 something years ago, and it is awesome.
After the 3rd creek crossing, you'll have to climb your way back up from the river, and don't feel bad if you have to walk parts of it or most of it, it is a beast. When you are almost at the top of the climb, you'll enter a very dense, young pine forest for a short distance and then the trail will open back up to a singletrack on old forest service road.
Continue straight ahead and you'll pass a turn to the left which would take you on a nice twisty and fast singletrack on the Cartecay Loop, Red and White, and Boy Scout Loop, but don't turn and you'll merge back onto the service road that you started on and it will take you back to the parking area.