Southern Appalachian Bicycle Association

Southern Appalachian Bicycle Association News:

6/3 Hour Big Ring Challenge Mountain Bike Race - SEC #4   September 24, 2016

Chainbuster Racing

The Jackrabbit Trail system is a roller-coaster of machine-cut trail that leaps and bounds through the Nantahala National Forest in North Carolina, just over the state line from Georgia. The single track winds through a peninsula surrounded by Lake Chatuge, offering stunning views around every turn. The fun-to-pain ratio is excellent on this fast, flat course—there’s less than 700 feet of climbing in every 10-mile lap. “That’s why we call it the Big-Ring Challenge,” says race director Kenny Griffin. “You can go as fast as you want.”

Lap distance: 10 miles

Elevation per lap: 700 feet

For additional information, visit

Another RAGBRAI in the Bag...

Pat Turner and Mark Moelter

SABA member Pat Turner and his 18 year old grandson Mark traveled to Iowa again this year to participate in RAGBRAI, the Register's Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa. Here are a few notes that Pat put together about RAGBRAI:

This ride is an annual seven day bicycle ride that is the oldest, largest, and longest multi-day bicycle tour in the country. It is the premier event by which all other multi-day bicycle tours are measured.

The ride started in 1973 when two columnists from the Des Moines Register invited people to ride across the state of Iowa. That first year about 120 people made it. That number grew steadily and now attracts 10,000 registered riders. Another 10,000 unregistered riders show up and ride also.

Raigbrai 2016

The RAGBRAI bicycle ride always begins on the western border of Iowa at the Missouri River and always ends on the eastern border at the Mississippi River. The theory is that winds usually blow from the west but that is not always true. The route varies each year as Iowa communities lobby for the opportunity to be on the RAGBRAI route. The local townspeople get organized to show riders how friendly Iowans can be.

Citizens of the pass through and overnight towns earn a hefty income from hungry and thirsty riders. One estimate said that outsiders spent in excess of $8 million during the week. This is Iowa's biggest annual tourism event. This is not a trivial exercise.

Raigrai 2016

This year the seven-day ride will cover 420 miles or an average of about 60 miles per day. The biggest RAGBRAI health challenge is caused by a few overconfident riders who do not train for the heat usually found on this strenuous July ride. One 60 year old had a heart attack and died this year.

I had heard so much about this RAGBRAI ride for decades but I decided to do it in 2008 and 2016 was my fourth. We had perfect weather with no rain.

Raigbrai 2016

For more information and professional photos, see the following website.

Weekly Group Rides!

SABA hosts several weekly group rides each week. The schedule is as follows:

Road Rides 2016:

Tuesday Nights: 6:00 PM - leaves from Hayesville Square in Downtown Hayesville, NC. Approximately 20 miles out and back through the Tusquittee area.

Wednesday Nights: 6 :00 PM - Wednesday night group road ride leaves at 6:00 PM from the big rocking chair at Owltown Market on Hwy. 129 in Blairsville, GA. The route varies through the Trackrock Valley. Mileage approx. 12 to 25 with A & B groups. For more info contact Blairsville Bikes & Hikes (706) 745-8141.

Thursday Nights: 6:00 PM - Meets at John C. Campbell Folk School in Brasstown, NC 28902 at the intersection of Brasstown Road and Harshaw Road. 15-30 miles, route varies weekly.

Other Rides:

Please check our Facebook page to see if there are any unscheduled rides.

Mountain Bike Rides 2016:

Thursday Nights: 6:15 PM - Thursday evening at Jack Rabbit Trails. Leaves the parking lot at 6:15 PM. Usually involves getting a bite to eat afterwards. Blairsville Bikes & Hikes 706 745 8141


SABA Membership Dues

You can now pay your membership dues online at for additional details view our membership page here

Now You Can Find Us on facebook!

Find Us on Facebook!

SABA has a new facebook profile and we encourage you to "Like US!"

For those of you not familiar with facebook, it is a social networking site which allows us to share news, events, photos, and more amongst the masses.

Facebook friends, sometimes known as "Fans" are eligible for special offers from SABA. We encourage you to "Like Us Now" and help spread the word!

Jackrabbit Mountain Bike Trail

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Calendar of Events:

SABA Calendar of Events

What's Hot:

Map of Jackrabbit Trail System... click here

Local Bike Routes Now Online... click here

SABA has a great jersey...
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SABA Jersey

Jackrabbit Trail News:

Close to 15 miles of machine constructed singletrack trails have been completed and are based on a stacked-loop design. The 3.1 mile Central Loop is the "core" trail that all other optional trails are connected. Many of the trails border Lake Chatuge, while others meander through the woods or ridge-top. These trails were specifically designed to appeal to all skill levels, beginner to advanced. It remains a work-in-progress, with signage, maps, parking lot facilities (pavillion/restrooms/information board) being planned, along with optional technical trail features (TTF's) our interviews here with Mike Riter of Trail Design Specialists.

Piney Knob Trail News:

The town of Murphy, North Carolina plans to construct 22.3 miles of recreational hiking and mountain biking trails on the 700+ acre Murphy Watershed property off of Piney Knob Hill Road and opening in Spring more here.

Trail Traffic Counter by

The Southern Appalachian Bicycle Association (SABA) is using two TRAFx Counters to assess both mountain biking and hiking trail usage. To learn more about TRAFx mountain bike and hiking trail counters please visit . To get a closer look on how the TRAFx system works on mountain biking trails click here.

Join or Renew Your SABA Membership Here:

Upcoming Trail Work Days:

  • Saturday - October 8, 2016 - Trail work day scheduled for Piney Knob Trail System on Saturday, October 8, 9:00 AM-12:00 PM. Meet at Trail head.

  • Saturday - October 29, 2016 - Trail work day scheduled for Jackrabbit Trail System on Saturday, October 29, 9:00 AM-12:00 PM. Meet at Trail head.

Next SABA Meeting:

TThe meetings will be held the last Friday of the month unless otherwise notified

  • Friday - October 28, 2016 - Next Meeting October 28, 2016 at Cherokee County Chamber of Commerce, Murphy NC at 6:30pm. This is a pot luck meeting, bring your favorite dish.

SABA is a Member of:


Trail Building


Blairsville Bikes and Hikes

SABA Members get 10% off at Blairsville Bikes & Hikes in Blairsville, GA!

Appalachian Outfitters

SABA Members get 10% off at Appalachian Outfitters in Murphy, NC!


Clay County Chamber of Commerce

Towns County Chamber of Commerce

SABA is a member of the Cherokee County Chamber of Commerce



Golden Leaf Foundation

HandMade in America

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