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Last weekend's Trail Care Crew visit to Morristown, TN was our third visit to Eastern Tennessee this year (after Kingsport and Chattanooga). Needless to say, there was no griping on our part about going back to the region that we have learned to love almost as much as our Rocky Mountains -- Eastern TN and Western NC (and we're going to throw in Northern GA for good reason, too) offers some of the most spectacular mountain biking in the country. No wonder there are a handful of IMBA Epics in that neck of the woods.

And we got to be a part of making it even better. We had a great time working with a hard-working group of volunteers in Morristown, TN. We led a project at Panther Creek State Park, host to plenty of mountains, rivers and jungle-like forests. In fact, our trailbuilding project was one of the hardest ever – something we didn’t refrain from telling our volunteers as they manhandled 200 pound rocks, dug bench-cut five feet into the rough, potters-clay like sideslope or ricocheted between paw-paw trees. Not to mention dodged tarantulas, snakes and ticks. No complaining here, though! We wouldn’t have it any other way. The new Lost Road trail is going to be a gnarly, technical bit of singletrack, exactly what the park is looking for, in order to compliment the 10 miles of existing fun and flowy trail.

We also helped the Five Rivers Cycling Club get their club off the ground and think through all the awesome opportunities they have to build more trail in the area. Thanks to Timmy at Panther Creek Bicycles; John and Jason, rangers at Panther Creek State Park; and to all of our volunteers who even stayed after our project was over to work ‘til dark. You guys rock!

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When does this trail open?

I will be in the Knoxville area in 3 weeks visiting my family. I don't suppose there is any chance this will be open by then?

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