Southern Appalachian Bicycle Association

Southern Appalachian Bicycle Association News:


The North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) will hold a public meeting in Murphy on December 8th for the proposed safety improvements forms the end of the four lane section of U.S. 19/74/64/129 approximately ¾ mile south of Murphy to Hiwassee Street in Murphy. The meeting is being held to inform citizens of the proposed and receive comments.

The project team will be developing designs to improve the traffic congestion, safety and traffic operations of this section of roadway. The improvements may include access control, dedicated turn lanes, and/or other safety measures to address traffic congestion and improve the overall safety and operations of the facility.

View the project limits map here.

The public meeting will take place on December 8, 2016, from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. at the First Baptist Church of Murphy located at 517 N. Hiwassee Street in Murphy. Interested citizens may attend at any time and NCDOT representatives will be available to answer questions and receive comments regarding the proposed projects. Attendees will also have the opportunity to submit written comments and questions until December 30, 2016. No formal presentation will be made.

The public can view information online at .

Anyone desiring additional information may contact Steven Williams, NCDOT Division 14, Design Construction Engineer; 253 Webster Road, Sylva, NC 28779 by phone; (828) 586-2141 or via email;

NCDOT will provide auxiliary aids and services under the Americans with Disabilities Act for disabled persons who wish to participate in this meeting. Anyone requiring special services should contact; Diane Wilson via e-mail at or by phone (919) 707-6073 as early as possible so that arrangements can be made.

Persons who speak Spanish and do not speak English, or have a limited ability to read, speak or understand English, may receive interpretive services upon request prior to the meeting by calling 1-800-481-6494.

Aquellas personas que hablan español y no hablan inglés, o tienen limitaciones para leer, hablar o entender inglés, podrían recibir servicios de interpretación si los solicitan antes de la reunión llamando al 1-800-481-6494.

Perfect Trail conditions set the stage for this year's Big Ring Challenge Mountain Bike Race

Chainbuster Racing

Perfect trail conditions along with great weather brought mountain biking enthusiasts from across the southeast to the Jackrabbit Trails on Saturday, September 24. This date marked the seventh annual Chin Buster 6/3 Hour Endurance Race at our local trails. Just under 300 racers participated in this endurance event in either a solo or team category.

JackRabbit Chainbusters-1

The Southeastern Endurance Cup features 3-hour and 6-hour mountain bike races at trail venues across Georgia, Alabama and North Carolina. Participants also travel as far as from Florida, South Carolina and Tennessee to be a part of this race series. Courses are designed to accommodate a range of athletes from beginner to expert. The course layout for the Jackrabbit venue consisted of an eleven mile race lap. Racers attempt to complete as many laps in the least amount of time.

Local racer Justin Bradley topped the podium in his first mountain bike race to win first place in the Junior 1 (14 and under) age category. Nathan Lindsey fought hard for a fourth place finish.

Justin Bradley

Many participants stated they will always attend the Jackrabbit venue, as it is one of their favorite trail systems in this series. Praise was also voiced in regards to the professional and efficient manner in which race director Eddie Freyer conducts his race series. The Southern Appalachian Bicycling Association prepared the course layout and assisted Chain Buster Productions with registration, course marshals, first aid stations and cleanup. SABA helped build and continues to maintain the Jackrabbit Trails. Members from the Lions Club volunteered their time by assisting with parking. Appreciation is also extended to the local EMS, along with Fire and Rescue for their assistance during the event.

For additional information, visit

JackRabbit Chainbusters-2


On October 1st it will be legal for motorists to cross the solid center line to pass slower-moving bicyclists.   This is a big advocacy win for BWNC and the NC bicycling community as we have been advocating for this change for many years; read the BWNC discussion here.

This provision is contained as Section 5.5a of House Bill 959: DOT Proposed Legislative Changes and reads as follows:

(e) The driver of a vehicle shall not overtake and pass another on any portion of the highway which is marked by signs, markers or markings placed by the Department of Transportation stating or clearly indicating that passing should not be attempted. The prohibition in this section shall not apply when the overtaking and passing is done in accordance with all of the following:

            1) The slower moving vehicle to be passed is a bicycle or a moped.

            2) The slower moving vehicle is proceeding in the same direction as the faster moving vehicle.

            3) The driver of the faster moving vehicle either (i) provides a minimum of four feet between the faster moving vehicle and the slower moving vehicle or (ii) completely enters the left lane of the highway.

            4) The operator of the slower moving vehicle is not (i) making a left turn or (ii) signaling in accordance with G.S. 20-154 that he or she intends to make a left turn.

            5) The driver of the faster moving vehicle complies with all other applicable requirements set forth in this section.

This new law is great for motorists especially as many pass in this manner already and now can do so legally. As bicyclists, we want motorists to pass us - and of course the motorist still needs to have assured clear distance ahead and only pass when safe.

The newly stipulated four-feet distance between the faster moving vehicle passing the slower moving (bicycle) vehicle in this scenario is an improvement over the current requirement for all vehicles to pass with a minimum two-feet distance clearance, which for bicycles is unacceptably too narrow to be safe. We believe that these new passing stipulations open the door to considering changing lanes to pass as the preferred default passing mode on all public roadways, including those with solid centerlines.

Viewers can read the Full Version of the Bill Here .

BikeWalk NC is a membership-based, statewide advocacy organization promoting non-motorized transportation choices for residents of and visitors to NC. Our existing and potential support base includes shop owners, cycling clubs, transportation professionals, local advocacy organizations, elected officials, allied non-profits, business groups, government, environmental and health-oriented organizations and various individual advocates across the state interested in promoting people-powered transportation.

Weekly Group Rides!

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

Road Rides 2016:

ENDED FOR 2016 SEASON - Tuesday Nights: 6:00 PM

ENDED FOR 2016 SEASON - Wednesday Nights: 6 :00 PM

ENDED FOR 2016 SEASON - Thursday Nights: 6:00 PM

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...
Get yours today!

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:

  • December 3, 2016 - Trail work day scheduled for Piney Knob Trail System from 9am-12pm weather permitting. Meet at Trail Head.

Next SABA Meeting:

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

  • December 9, 2016 - SABA Christmas Party - Join us for the SABA Christmas Party at Valley River Brewery in Murphy, North Carolina on December 9, 2016 at 6:30 PM.

    Everyone welcome! Come out and meet an awesome group of cycling friends!

SABA is a Member of:


Trail Building


Blairsville Bikes and Hikes

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


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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