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Gravel (FS, mild mtb) trails near Atlanta?

Old 05-07-18, 03:13 PM
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Gravel (FS, mild mtb) trails near Atlanta?

My new gravel bike will be here Wednesday! I want to ride it, but don't want to drive an hour every time I hit the trails. Anything closer in? I'm in the NEATL (N.E. ATL).

Thanks!
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Old 05-07-18, 07:36 PM
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TimothyH rides dirt/gravel down your way and would be a good resource. You might message him.
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Old 05-07-18, 08:03 PM
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Not really. Just by reading your other posts I think you're already familiar with all your options but here's my two cents anyway:

There's a short gravel loop of about 3 miles at the Cochran Shoals CNRA right near 285/75. This connects to the Sope Creek singletrack loops. I do it and Sope Creek often on my gravel bike. The singeltrack is better counter-clockwise than clockwise due to how rocky some of the descents are, the gravel is fine any direction but can be a little damp at times.

Other than that you could put together the gravel segments around Roswell - there was a "roubaix" type ride a few years ago. But it ends up being maybe 5-10 miles of gravel but it's spread out over a 40-50 mile ride and is largely unrideable during weekdays due to traffic on the connecting pavement.

Next is the gravel out near Dallas and Paulding county. Issue here is that it's at least 30-45 minutes of stoplight heavy driving or a 2+ hour ride down the Silver Comet. I do it often and it's a fun ride but long. Here's a fun public map from the aforementioned TimothyH that has the gravel in Paulding county highlighted: https://ridewithgps.com/routes/20483345

There's also an additional loop that starts off Braswell Mountain Road at Lee road and loops N/NW all the way around back to Braswell Mountain at Blue Car Body Road. It can be a little chunky but is very fun. I think TimothyH just did this loop last week?

The WNJACS ride on Wednesday leaving from the Spindle is always saying how they're riding in-town gravel but most of those sections are at most a hundred feet long and a lot are alleyways that are in very poor repair and not really fun to ride.

I think you already know about the 20ish mile Dirty Sheets route in Chattahoochee Hills far SW OTP.

Also I just remembered: Look up the Beltgrind route, it's not gravel but it has large sections that are unpaved and really quite fun on a gravel bike. There is the gravel section of beltline north of peidmont park but it's also short and doesn't connect to anything.
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Old 05-08-18, 01:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Spoonrobot
Next is the gravel out near Dallas and Paulding county. Issue here is that it's at least 30-45 minutes of stoplight heavy driving or a 2+ hour ride down the Silver Comet. I do it often and it's a fun ride but long. Here's a fun public map from the aforementioned TimothyH that has the gravel in Paulding county highlighted: https://ridewithgps.com/routes/20483345

There's also an additional loop that starts off Braswell Mountain Road at Lee road and loops N/NW all the way around back to Braswell Mountain at Blue Car Body Road. It can be a little chunky but is very fun. I think TimothyH just did this loop last week?

Paulding will be quite a drive for the OP from the ATL Northeast. Nevertheless, some roads to search for are Gore Lakes, Johnny Monk, Mt. Moriah, Lucas Ln, Narroway Trail, Clayroot Rd, Lee Rd, Blue Car Body Rd and Brushy Mountain Rd. There is also a 2.2 mile unnamed gravel road connecting the top of Brushy Mountain to the Silver Comet Trail.

Lee Rd, Clayroot and Blue Car Body Rd are really nice but keep in mind that this is Wildlife Managment Area land and often open to hunters. A Georgia Land Pass or hunter's license is needed to be on this land.

Any of the roads on these routes can be used to string together a satisfying ride. Blue is gravel.
https://ridewithgps.com/routes/26986193
https://ridewithgps.com/routes/27412253

This is an example of a weeknight ride which strings together some singletrack, sewer easments and cross country runing trails behind the high school.
https://ridewithgps.com/routes/26702330

There may be some gravel to the east of Lawrenceville. I'm not 100% sure.

I can get from Acworth to Jake Mountain parking lot to ride the Southern Cross route in less than 1.5 hours if I push the Subaru hard and take back roads all the way.


-Tim-

Last edited by TimothyH; 05-08-18 at 02:34 PM.
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Old 05-08-18, 02:29 PM
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Hey, I'm thinking of going down to Eatonton this Saturday 5/12, to pre-ride the Red Clay Ramble course.

https://ridewithgps.com/routes/27442473 is the plan. This is the RCR route + detour to the town of Gray for a store stop.

Spoonrobot is at least 40 minutes quicker than I am on the course but the company would be welcome if either or both of you would like soft pedal the first few miles.

High temperature is supposed to be 91° so it should be fun.

Let me know. Send a PM.

Last edited by TimothyH; 05-08-18 at 02:43 PM.
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Old 05-08-18, 05:48 PM
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Great notes Tim!

The gravel east of lawrenceville is almost entirely gone. There is the odd residential road that is gravel but nothing major. Most of what is referenced in Strava titles for that area is the short section of Old Freeman Mill/Lawrence road southeast of Dacula. There was also a section at Bailey/West Union Grove but it might have been paved. There is some dirt out further near Athens but I’d have to dig into my mapmyride to remember where as I haven’t been out there since 2012.

Harbins Park has some mountain bike trails that are pretty fun on a gravel bike but probably not worth the drive just for that.

I’d hoped to pre-ride the red clay ramble but I’ve a brevet this weekend so I won’t be able to make it. Thanks for the invite.
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Old 05-08-18, 09:16 PM
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Good luck on the brevet. Hope you stay safe.
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Old 07-05-18, 06:26 AM
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I see that dirty sheets is mentioned but it is a good route and worth tagging with a location if you don't mind driving south of the city.

https://sorbaatlanta.org/the-dirty-sheets/

Also, I was running in the area and discovered some gravel roads that could be pulled together into something interesting. If you go to this location on Google Maps, Cochran Road is all gravel and I saw other gravel roads nearby.

8660 Campbellton Fairburn Rd, Fairburn, GA 30213

Last edited by mojojojo; 07-05-18 at 12:22 PM.
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