Dirt Rag Magazine

Oskar Blues Brewery to open beer and bike ranch in North Carolina

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Oskar Blues Brewery hails from Colorado but has made western North Carolina its second home, first building a brewery there in 2012, and now it will open a 145-acre farm as a beer and bike vacation destination.

Located about eight miles from the Brevard-based Oskar Blues brewery, the former Shoal Falls Farm soon will be a haven for mountain bikers, a place to grow hops, pasture land for spent grain-fed cows, and a music and event space, all against the beautiful backdrop of Dupont State Forest.

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The Oskar Blues REEB Ranch will be home to The Bike Farm, an established bike guide and concierge service, owned by Cashion Smith and Eva Surls. The REEB Ranch/Bike Farm team envisions creating a world-class biking destination for the whole family at the site, which will offer a bike park and direct trail access to Dupont’s miles of single track.

Cycling has always been a huge part of Oskar Blues’ culture and was a huge reason that soul-founder Dale Katechis chose Western North Carolina as the home for a second brewery.

“Western North Carolina rings true with the same eclectic mountain energy that inspired Oskar Blues to put Dale’s Pale Ale in a can,” Katechis says.

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The name REEB Ranch pays homage to REEB Cycles, Oskar Blues hand-made bike company based in ColoRADo. A stable of demo REEB Mountain Bikes & Dirt Jump rigs are available at the REEB Ranch.

“It’s important to us to keep that trail-side camaraderie in the community,” Katechis says. “We’ve been able to integrate our passions of the brewery, farm, restaurants and REEB Cycles into much of what we do–the Oskar Blues REEB Ranch continues that effort.”

Oskar Blues has kept a grassroots, hands-on feel with ColoRADo projects such as REEB Cycles and the Hops & Heifers Farm, which provides home-grown beef, pork and vegetables to four Oskar Blues restaurants, including a new CHUBurger at Coors Field in Denver. The Oskar Blues REEB Ranch continues that grassroots path in Western North Carolina.

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Construction on the REEB Ranch bike park has already begun, and rides from the property will start rolling soon.

The ranch creates a ride-in, ride-out experience with direct Dupont State Park single-track access, pump track sessions, dirt jump progression lines and post ride beers alongside the swimming hole. On-site lodging includes a 1940s cabin at the base of two 43-foot waterfalls and an apartment on the top floor of a venue-perfect barn, while tent camping is also available.

“Whether it’s brewing beer, building bikes, or creating one of the East Coast’s most impressive bike parks, Dale likes to dream big and enable big dreams for his partners,” Smith says.

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For the past two years, Oskar Blues has offered the Oskar Blues Ordeal bus tours for a backstage view into all Oskar Blues ColoRADo locations including the brewery, farm, restaurants & bike company during the Great American Beer Festival in the fall. Check out a chance to win a trip to the 2014 Oskar Blues Ordeal (ColoRADo) by signing up and recycling here.

 

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