Surviving the Snake metric century bike ride to benefit Johnson County Community Hospital Sept. 13


MOUNTAIN CITY, Tenn. – The fourth annual Surviving the Snake 100K/50K Bicycle Ride is set for Sept. 13, giving riders a scenic, challenging ride while helping support the Johnson County Community Hospital Foundation.

The 100-kilometer ride will start at Ralph Stout Park near downtown and take cyclists on some of the legendary motorcycle route known as “The Snake” along U.S. Highway 421 from Mountain City to the quaint community of Shady Valley. The 100K route includes a pass by Watauga Lake, a mountain climb with almost 1,500 feet of elevation gain over four miles, and a visit to Damascus, Va., known as Trail Town USA.

Proceeds go to the JCCH Foundation for a Cardiac Exercise Stress System which is used to diagnose heart disease. Last year’s ride raised about $15,000 to help the hospital finish upgrading its mammography exam and waiting rooms.

“This is a gorgeous ride that benefits a great cause,” said Karen Clark of the Mountain States Foundation. “Riders can have the full ‘metric century’ experience or do the 50K that doesn’t include the mountain ascent.

“It’s challenging, but it’s a fun, friendly event and the people who’ve done the ride have really enjoyed it.”

All pre-registered riders get a race T-shirt with their name on it, and a full lunch will be provided after the ride.

“This is no doubt the best-kept secret of a bike ride, just 15 minutes from Boone N.C.,” said Jim Marler, one of the race organizers and a past ride participant. “It’s extremely well-organized with scenery ranging from the Blue Ridge Mountains to riding beside whitewater streams.

“This ride also has some of the smoothest roads of any event anywhere. No matter if you choose the metric or half metric route, the good race support, rest stops and delicious food afterward makes this one a great, memorable biking event.”

Bikes hit the road at 8:30 a.m. Both rides start and finish at Ralph Stout Park near downtown Mountain City, located at 465 N. Shady St. on U.S. 421. Registration is $40 in advance, $50 on ride day. There is a 250-rider limit.

Surviving the Snake is a timed ride rather than a race and will be held on an open course. Aid stations will be provided. Event-day registration will start at 6:30 a.m.

For more information or to register online, visit or call Mountain States Foundation at 423-302-3131.

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