Beech Mountain, North Carolina: A Challenging Ride On a Bicycle

During the 1990’s:  The Tour du Pont finished two stages at the top of Beech Mountain…different years of course, with Lance Armstrong winning one of them.  This was before his cancer diagnosis, while riding for Motorola.  

Beech is the highest incorporated town east of the Mississippi at 5,500 feet, and not very far from Boone, North Carolina.

I’ve ridden my bike to the top of Beech at least fifteen or more times over the years.  The last time was 2010 with my good friend and cycling partner Mike Keeley.  It was a late October day, and we began our ride from the Mask General Store in Valle Crucis, then taking highway 194 to Banner Elk.

While climbing the mountain the weather changed suddenly, becoming cloudy, windy and cold.  However, we were fortunate to get to the top and back down without encountering rain.

It can be difficult in selecting a day to climb Beech Mountain, especially this late in the year, as within minutes it can begin to rain or snow.  

(Supplemental)  October 20th 2011 @ 7:41 PM – It snowed today on Beech, and the forecast is for snow showers tonight. 


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