The Best Guide to Motorcycle Roads, Rides & Events

"Beginners Beware" + ADD NEW ROUTE


16   in North Carolina North Carolina Miles

Motorcycle Roads

By Ross Russo
on May 1, 2000

4.6out of 5

11 Riders rated

 Scenery

 Road Quality

 Roadside Amenities

Written Directions

I usually start my ride out of Marion, NC off of hwy 70. Head west out of Marion and grab hwy 80 going north all the way up to the Blue Ridge Parkway. Head north/east on the Blue Ridge Parkway to hwy 226a (Little Switzerland). Head south on 226a until it intersects with 226 and head back north on 226 back up to the parkway. North on the parkway to 221 and where you want to get on 221 heading south and back down to hwy 70/Marion.

To get to the suggested starting point in Marion, from Charlotte head north on I-77 to I-40 west. from Ashville, NC take I-40 east into Marion.

Scenery

If you dare to take your eyes off the road you will see some of NC's awesome mountain scenery. Photo contributed by visitor in Jun 09 - "Taken above the "Cradle of Forestry". Take the Parkway West towards Mt. Pisgah; its the last overlook before you come to highway 276 (which takes you to Sliding Rock, Looking Glass Falls and the Cradle of Forestry). Its a beautiful ride, not too difficult."

Road Quality

There are some steep drops and lots of tight curves. Hwy 80 can be "interesting" if you encounter a log truck. Traffic is generally light and only locals. 80 is on the narrow side, and has a significant grade. Usually the pavement is in decent to good shape (new blacktop summer of 2001). Curves are banked just right. 226a, 226, and 221 are generally a little more traveled by those dreaded 4 wheel cages but also a lot of fun.

Roadside Amenities

There are several food and fuel establishments in Marion, NC including an ice cream shop at the intersection 80 and 70. Little Switzerland also has food and lodging. There is a country store at the bottom of 226A that serves burgers and dogs and fuel. There are also several food establishments along the parkway in various locations.

Additional Info

- View the weather forecast for this area from Yahoo weather . - Visit North Carolina web site.

Nickname (optional) : Ross Russo

What Riders Say About this Route Add Review & Rating

By Orange-GTO
on October 30, 2013 3 out of 3 members found this review useful.

5.0out of 5

Motorcycle Year

Motorcycle Make

Motorcycle Type Other

We did the portion of this route known as the Devils Whip. The road is fantastic! (PS. Sorry to crash the motorcycle group, but this resource has been fantastic for our car club). The day we drove it as a group the road had hardly any traffic and the pavement conditions were excellent!

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By Guest
on June 3, 2013 1 out of 1 members found this review useful.

5.0out of 5

Motorcycle Year 2011

Motorcycle Make Harley Davidson

Motorcycle Type Touring

What a Great road! We were visiting the Blue Ridge Parkway and discovered it by accident. It was pouring rain and we were ready to call it a day when we came to a sign that said Marion 16 miles and the other town was 17 miles in the opposite direction, so I chose the short route. OMG! We didn't know what were getting ourselves into. Pouring rain and this road ain't cool, but we made it just fine and spent the night in Marion. We rode back up the next morning (it was clear weather) just to see it without rain and fog. Great ride!

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By Guest
on February 11, 2011 1 out of 1 members found this review useful.

4.5out of 5

Motorcycle Year 2006

Motorcycle Make Kawasaki

Motorcycle Type Sport

I love this ride! It is probably my favorite of all the trips we make. However the Beginners Beware advice is for real, but it’s a heck of an adrenaline rush!

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By Guest
on September 23, 2009 1 out of 1 members found this review useful.

4.5out of 5

Motorcycle Year 2006

Motorcycle Make Kawasaki

Motorcycle Type Cruiser

This road seperates the bikers from the posers. Beware!! tends to take chrome off the mufflers and my kidneys hurt for a week after my girlfriend finally let go. Don't ride this to prove anything. It's deceptive and unforgiving. Deserves a 10 but I'm always looking for the "next greatest".

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By trubbl
on August 17, 2014 0 out of 1 members found this review useful.

5.0out of 5

Motorcycle Year 2002

Motorcycle Make yamaha

Motorcycle Type Cruiser

BEWARE at the moment, a lot of tar on 226a after repairs from the winter. Riders who want to ride this need to do so in dry weather, wet weather makes the road terribly slick. I am local and I try to avoid this road right now until it is properly fixed

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By Guest
on August 8, 2013 0 out of 0 members found this review useful.

5.0out of 5

Motorcycle Year 2001

Motorcycle Make suzuki

Motorcycle Type Cruiser

the snake was a crazzy experience definatley a adreniline getter our pipes dragged a few times and those switchbacks are intense but loads of fun, not a road for games or goofing around have fun and be careful!!

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By Guest
on April 19, 2011 0 out of 2 members found this review useful.

4.5out of 5

Motorcycle Year 2011

Motorcycle Make Suzuki

Motorcycle Type Sport

This road is a great road to ride! I only live less that 5 miles from it and one reason it is one of the last great roads in NC is because there has not been alot of people that knew about it untill the last few years. Now it is getting all this attintion it will be just like the Dragon or 421 in TN. or 181 in NC. It can continue to be a great road to ride as long as everyone comes and rides it and shows this road the respect in deserves because it will Bite, and it will Bite you hard! If you slip up its a long way down the side of the mountain!!!! So come ride and enjoy, but please be carefull!

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By Guest
on March 29, 2011 0 out of 0 members found this review useful.

5.0out of 5

Motorcycle Year 2006

Motorcycle Make Honda

Motorcycle Type Sport

I truly think HW80 and 226 are more fun than the dragon. The elevation change is incredible! But seriously be careful, there is no room for error on this ride. With rock walls on your right and blind right turns, you should be ever vigilant for those 1000 foot drops and trucks not in their lanes!

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By Guest
on August 20, 2010 0 out of 1 members found this review useful.

No Rating Provided

Motorcycle Year 2010

Motorcycle Make Honda

Motorcycle Type Other

caution on 226a. They are setting up speed traps as of this year. Looking for some extra money for the area

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By Guest
on August 8, 2010 0 out of 0 members found this review useful.

4.0out of 5

Motorcycle Year 2000

Motorcycle Make Kawasaki

Motorcycle Type Sport

Took this route with some friends today. It was alot of fun. However that is what we enjoy, the twisties! Agreed, its not for beginners! My only issues were that 80 was not in great condition, needs paved & it was trashy. Lots of gravel limbs in the road. I am hoping it's just from the recent storms in this area. We will go back to find out.

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By Guest
on August 30, 2009 0 out of 2 members found this review useful.

3.0out of 5

Motorcycle Year 2001

Motorcycle Make Harley-Davidson

Motorcycle Type Touring

Rode 70-80 a couple of years ago to get to the park way. Not my kind of riding on a Harley. Miles of switch backs.

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