Devil's Whip logoThe Devil's Whip

So...What IS The Devil's Whip?

It's North Carolina State Road 80...12 miles of pure adrenlaline and challenge! It separates the men from the boys and the women from the girls! Truly - posers beware!!!
A word of CAUTION - When you hit the "LEARNING CURVE" northbound (a.k.a. SCHOOL BUS TURNAROUND), you've just reached THE POINT OF NO RETURN! Hold on because you're getting ready to travel the LONGEST 3 miles in these parts. You climb 1,205 feet and take 50+ turns in this 3 MILE section alone to Buck Creek Gap and the Blue Ridge Parkway intersection!!
If you choose to continue on 80 north and not get on the Parkway, there's a very deadly curve ~3 miles from Buck Creek Gap and just past the Mt Mitchell Golf Course. Posted speed for this turn is 15 mph for very good reason - at least one fatality occurs here every year.
***IF YOU'VE NEVER BEEN ON The Devil's Whip BEFORE - Travel it NORTH (up) from US 70!***

So...What IS The Devil's Whip (NC 80)??!

It's only one of the most technically difficult roads around. Don't take our word for it. Here are real comments & ratings about NC 80.

The following Rider Posts about NC 80 are from
(©2010 - All rights reserved)
[A really great reference & website, by the way!]

TITLE: "North Carolina's Route 80 (Mar 09)"

"… see a beautiful lake on south end and great views of Mt Mitchell ... more curves and elevation changes than the Dragon’s tail with a lot less traffic also!"
11 riders have given this ride a “Riders’ Rating” of 8.8 out of 10.
Submitted By: Scott
Date Submitted: Mar '09

Motorcycle Road Scenery: 5 Stars
"Climbs 2500' in elevation. Crosses Blue Ridge Parkway east of Mt Mitchell. Beautiful lake on south end and great views of Mt Mitchell at Mt Mitchell golf course."
Motorcycle Road Quality: 5 Stars
"Good road condition. More curves and elevation changes than the Dragon’s tail with a lot less traffic also. Several switchbacks. Not for the novice rider."
Written directions:
"Start this motorcycle ride in a town called Pleasant Gardens, NC which is about 30 mi east of Asheville off US Highway 70. Head north out of Pleasant Gardens on NC 80 and just stay on NC 80 as it crosses the Blue Ridge Parkway and continue north all the way up to US Highway 19 in the town of Micaville, NC."

ACTUAL RIDER POSTS ABOUT "North Carolina's Route 80":

•Matt - 2006 Honda
This user rated the route: 9 out of 10
Posted 12/3/10
"Being from the micaville area I've ridden almost every inch of route 80. This is definitely a must ride if you love tight twistys with little to no police activity. It gets a little tight for high speed once you hit Buck Creek, but still a lot of fun. Not the best road for novice riders, especially going down."

•Nabubba - 1988 Harley-Davidson
This user rated the route: 10 out of 10
Posted 10/20/10
"This is a fantastic ride. Much better then the Tail of the Dragon in my book and more challenging. Just when you get to open the bike up a bit you have to brake and set up for another tight twisty. Hwy 80 is also near some other great roads in the area. Take a trip there you will not be disappointed."

•Jimmy - 2009 Harley-Davidson
This user rated the route: 10 out of 10
Posted 9/13/10
"Super fun road, better than the dragon when you consider cops to curves ratio. A must do, if you miss this one you have missed one of the best. Down is best, don't have to catch so many gears!"

•J. Whiteside - 2005 Suzuk
This user rated the route: 9 out of 10
Posted 7/26/10
"This is by far one of the best twisty roads I have ridin on. NC 80, Buck Creek or what ever you want to call it is a great ride with very little traffic and coppers :D. From highway 70 up to the Blueridge Parkway, its about 16 miles of fun! Oh, and did I say dangerous! I ride the road regularly. about 4 years ago I ran of the road and down the mountain side 150 feet. Lucky to still be alive! I was just on NC80 last week. I was leading the pack with some other riders and maybe I was pushing it too hard..... but one of the riders had an accident. It was his 1st time on the road. Had I known, I would have set a slower pace. He was alright though. It did bring back memories of my accident because we had to turn around and go back n find him. If I hadnt been riding with a friend..... My body may still be on the mountain side."

•Susie - 2009 BMW
This user rated the route: 9 out of 10
Posted 7/13/10
"Unbelievable road,Rt. 80 on the west side of Blue Ridge needs to be done up and down, I like to call it “The Devil’s Staircase” We met the man that plotted the route and he ask us if it is better than “The Dragon” YES it is. BTW great town and gas on the other side."

•Scott Wilson - 2007 Harley-Davidson
This user rated the route: 8 out of 10
Posted 6/15/10
"I grew up on Highway 80 and know this road like the back of my hand. My parents still live about a mile from the Parkway in the Busick community. I still love riding 80 from the parkway down to Pleasant Gardens (we call it Buck Creek Rd). I would love to see more people riding 80, pass the word."

•GW21 - 2003 Harley-Davidson
This user rated the route: 8 out of 10
Posted 8/15/09
"We found this awsum road by accident...I had ridin' the Dragon twice the day before...80 is better ...with no traffic or law..."

•Greg - 2006 Triumph
This user rated the route: 8 out of 10
Posted 7/16/09
"i use 80 as part of a longer ride and i believe for the thrill vs. cops ratio it offers a better value than the dragon. It could actually be another dragon if more people knew about it. A great ride from 226 to 70 to 80 to BRP to 226A to 226 to 223 to BRP to Blowing Rock...back on 221 to 18. A great ride. Try it. but it does take about 4 hrs."

•Joe Butch White - 2006 Harley-Davidson
This user rated the route: 9 out of 10
Posted 7/2/09
"Found this one by accident when Blueridge was closed at Mt. Mitchell. Took the rider backrest off on the second run to get down lower on the bike, drug the boards a couple times. I like it much better that the dragon. Old guys like me don't care for head-ons from 70 mph from other bikes."

•Bob - 2003 Kawasaki
This user rated the route: 7 out of 10
Posted 6/1/09
"Pretty good road but it does not have more curves than the Dragon's Tail. It has several good switchbacks, and some elevation change. Worth a ride if you are in the area."

•Carson King -
Posted 5/29/09
"This is a great ride. I usually go up 80 to the BRP, go north/east to Little Switzerland, eat, then come back on 226. Both roads are great riding. Got caught in a monster rainstorm coming down from Little Switzerland once. Made for a very interesting ride that day. Sure was exciting though."

•Dan -
Posted 5/13/09
"also check out the ride between hwy 80 and Little Switzerland on Hwy 226."

TITLE: "Beginners Beware"

5 riders have given this ride a “Riders’ Rating” of 8 out of 10.
Submitted By: Ross Russo
Date Submitted: May 00
Motorcycle Road Scenery: 5 Stars
"If you dare to take your eyes off the road you will see some of NC's awesome mountain scenery."
Motorcycle Road Quality: 5 Stars
"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."
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."


•Reviewed by Orange-GTO on October 30, 2013
This user rated the route: 5 out of 5
Creator: SSP-GTO
motorcycle_type: Other
Comment: 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!

•Reviewed by Guest on August 8, 2013
This user rated the route: 5 out of 5
motorcycle_year: 2001
motorcycle_make: suzuki
motorcycle_type: Cruiser
Comment: 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!!

•Reviewed by Guest on June 3, 2013
This user rated the route: 5 out of 5
Creator: Vince Castiglia
motorcycle_year: 2011
motorcycle_make: Harley Davidson
motorcycle_type: Touring
Comment: 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!

•Reviewed by Guest on April 19, 2011
This user rated the route: 4.5 out of 5
Creator: Jeff
motorcycle_year: 2011
motorcycle_make: Suzuki
motorcycle_type: Sport
Comment: 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 a lot of people that knew about it until the last few years. Now it is getting all this attention 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 careful!

•Daniel - 2006 Honda
This user rated the route: 10 out of 10
Posted 3/29/11
"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!"

•Jen - 2006 Kawasaki
This user rated the route: 9 out of 10
Posted 2/11/11
"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!"

•Steve Moore - 2006 Kawasaki
This user rated the route: 9 out of 10
Posted 9/3/09
"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'."