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  • Motorcycle Loop Ride near Hot Springs, NC
    French Broad River in Hot Springs, NC

    French Broad River

    The small historic town of Hot Springs, NC, has long been a familiar pit stop for mountain area motorcycle riders. It is situated north and west of Asheville near the border with Tennessee on the banks of the French Broad River. The town is popular with rafters and hikers, has couple biker friendly places to eat, and there are natural hot springs to soak in at the spa.

    Hot Springs, NC

    Hot Springs, NC

    Motorcycle riders are attracted to this area for the wonderful and tricky two lane back roads which thread through the surrounding mountains. The newfound popularity of NC 209 a.k.a. “The Rattler” as one of the top 10 motorcycle rides in the Blue Ridge Mountains is bringing more motorcycle touring enthusiasts to discover this playground of nice biker roads.

    Hot Springs to Flag Pond Motorcycle Ride Map

    The map shows a motorcycle loop ride that takes you across the border to Flag Pond, TN., then loops you back to Hot Springs.

    • Leaving Hot Springs, go east on US 25 / 70 making the gentle climb then descent to the junction with NC 208 at Hurricane.
    • Turn north (left) and follow NC 208 along the winding river. As you come to the junction of NC 208 and NC 212 note the small bridge over the creek. Guntertown Road is on the right just before the bridge, NC 212 is at the stop sign once you cross the bridge.
    • The north leg ( NC 212 / TN 352 ) of the triangle shaped motorcycle ride is a pretty nice cruise following along creeks and streams for the most part with a few tricky curves thrown in to keep you on your toes.
    • The east leg ( TN 23 / US 23 ) is pretty relaxed riding, there are a couple passing zones on the long inclines. You’ll want to keep an eye out for the turn onto Big Laurel Road, then hold on for the wild ride back.
    • Big Laurel Road is the south leg of the loop and full of tricky curves. Be alert for scattered debris in a couple of the hairpins around bluff faces. Walnut Creek Road spurs off to the south, be sure you veer in the correct direction when you reach this junction to remain on Big Laurel Road.
    • Guntertown Road leads you east to the small bridge on NC 208. Retrace your path to return to Hot Springs.
    Motorcycles on Big Laurel Road

    Big Laurel Road

    The roads in this area can be extremely challenging and tight. If you prefer an easier course, the ride to Flag Pond on NC 212 / TN 352 can be done out-and-back. There is a large pull off riders use for a break at the junction of TN 352 & TN 23.


    wayne busch - Smoky Mountain Motorcycle

    Wayne Busch

    – Wayne Busch lives in Waynesville, NC, where he produces the most detailed, comprehensive, up-to-date motorcycle pocket maps of the Blue Ridge and Smoky Mountains to help you get the most of your vacation experience. See them here –


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    14 Comments to “Motorcycle Loop Ride near Hot Springs, NC”

    Thank you for posting all the rides there are. We are planning a trip down to the Deals Gap area in August and are looking for some places to go riding.

    We’ve ridden the Smokey Mountain area a few times and we love the Cherohala skyway area. Take the 6-7 mile road down to Bald River Falls just outside of Tellico Plains.

    Cherokee NC is a cool little town to hang out for a day or three.

    Thank you for this info, Wayne. I cannot wait to check out some of these rides.

    Also the Bobarosa saloon on 25/70 just a short ride north of hot springs n c is a great biker bar/food/campground an party place 24/7 located in delrio tn.Bob an Jesse or the owners!!great people.

    Looking for ride around hit springs arksas

    never rode on the Blue Ridge Mountains roads but definitely going to do it someday

    Have been to maggie valley and stayed at Rob and Gabby’s a holiday motel. They are awesome hosts and my wife and I are going to try to get back down this year again. We have done the blue ridge many times..the foothills parkway..awesome..cherahola..kòol deals gap many times and many loops in the area. We havent done this loop yet….looking forward to it.

    We are going from Oklahoma to Kitty Hawk NC and we are going thru’ Deals Gap Dragons Tail and then up thru’ Johnson City Tn, to visit with my Daughter and then hop back on the bike and go to Kitty Hawk. Is there any Roads that go From Johnson City to Kitty Hawk that’s Amazing?
    Thank You So Much.

    Thanks for posting these rides.We are going down to Waynesville for a base and ride as much of the area as we can.I will use the references you have shared whenever I can.Thanks again. and safe riding…Dave Smith

    Nice Ride . I will be heading up that way on my way to New England again. Had some wonderful rides thru the Smoky Mtn in years past and look forward to this year . I will look closer and see if this ride is in my general loop.
    Keep up the great ride posts

    sounds like a bucket list trip for me

    Thanks for the info, We love riding in NC

    I picked this ride to ride with two friends. Started at lake Junaluska, followed your instructions and it was an awesome ride! Keep up the awesome ride info.


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