Morrow Mountain - Cycling

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A challenging ride through Carolina piedmont countryside which climbs to the summit of Morrow Mountain, and then gets difficult.

Written by

Rob Glover


60.0 miles

Destination Distance From Downtown

25.6 miles


4 of 5 diamonds

Lots of vertical and distance make this a challenging ride

Time To Complete

4 hours


Spring, Summer, and Fall

Dog Friendly


Fees Permits


Land Website

Weekly Rides



The 60-mile route beginning in Locust, NC and turning around at Morrow Mountain State park is commonly known by its group ride name: The Assault on Morrow Mountain. The group ride is organized by  Hundreds of cyclists gather each month from May to September for the quad churning, lung burning event.

What Makes It Great

The route begins in the parking lot of Running Creek Elementary School and, for the first 20 or so miles rolls through the green hills of piedmont farmland. Taking a right turn, the Assault enters Morrow Mountain State park and climbs to the top, snagging views from the ancient mountain.

The trick to this ride isn’t just climbing to the top of Morrow. It’s remembering that the way back is filled with plenty of rolling hills, tedious climbs, and a couple serious uphill battles. Being a hero on the first 30 will make the rest of your day a long one.

Expect every terrain from nearly flat farmland to 14% grade up the side of a mountain. Once in the park you have the option of continuing straight up to the top of Morrow Mountain or riding down to the lake and then attacking the peak for even more challenge.

Who is Going to Love It

Any cyclist looking for a great mountain ride east of Charlotte. Given the location, the route attracts riders from the Triangle, Winston Salem, and The Queen City.  This ride isn't for beginners,  and can feel long, but the country roads and park views help the 60 miles fly by, sort of.

Directions, Parking, & Regulations

There is no official support for this ride. Begin at Running Creek Elementary, the earlier the better for both heat and state park traffic. The group ride is show and go so everyone can do their own thing. 

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Morrow Mountain - Cycling

339 Running Creek Church Rd
Locust, NC, 28097
35.275855, -80.383984

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