|   Rate it:

Level: Intermediate
Length: 5 mi (8 km)
Surface: Singletrack
Configuration: Loop
Elevation: +296/278 ft
Total: 9 riders

Mountain Biking Bear Wheeler

****   Add a review
#73 of 199 mountain bike trails in Tennessee
#4,109 in the world

Update 7/24/14:

There has been about a mile or two added to the upper loop. It's pretty twisty and has some very steep switchbacks. It has the most relief of any trail in Mid-TN.

First added by searsandrewj on Dec 31, 2002. Last updated Apr 30, 2020. → add an update
Before you go
  • Drinking water: unknown
  • Lift service: unknown
  • Night riding: unknown
  • Pump track: unknown
  • Restrooms: yes
  • Fat bike grooming: unknown
  • E-bikes allowed: unknown
  • Fee required: unknown
This trail information is user-generated. Help improve this information by suggesting a correction.
Getting there
Interstate 40 to Carthaige. Exit and go north. Take a right on state route 25. 25 ends at 859. Turn right. Go 2 miles and turn right into the campground and boat dock area. The trailhead is in the corner of the first parking lot on your right.
I Rode It!   Add to another list

Bear Wheeler Trail map

Add to or improve this map // Share this map on your website

Local Info

Club Sponsor


Local Bike Shop

Trail checkins

iliketexmex (on Jun 21, 2017)
What's this?

Upcoming Events

Add one

Trail conditions

Overgrown (on Jun 21, 2017)
login to update

Camping & Lodging

Coming soon!

Bear Wheeler videos

Add a video
These videos have been shared by members of the Singletracks community. Report inappropriate content here.

Mountain Bike Trails Near Carthaige, Tennessee

| 0 mi
| 5 mi

Rider questions

Add a review




    The trail quality was good but the trail itself was very poorly marked, it was very easy to get lost and lose track of which trail was which.

    Reply | Thank
  • JCampbellTN

    We will be heading out to Defeated Creek tomorrow Oct 29th to reopen any impassable areas on this trail. in years past it has been a small dedicated group that has maintained this trail. SORBAmidTN will now be maintaining this trail regularly. I hope you can join us.

    Reply | Thank
  • djcmmoore   ✓ supporter

    This is one of the more challenging rides in middle Tn because you actually get a long, sustained climb. From the parking lot if you ride the trail counter clockwise (go out on the double track about 1/4 mile then take the singletrack on the right) this is the best direction. You will have a 6 mile ride to the top with about 900' of vertical once you reach it. From the top you can do a 1 mile downhill or turn around to give yourself a really nice 13 mile ride.

    Reply | Thank
  • Eric Meyn

    I give this trail 5 stars for what it offers to the trail runner. The only reason I gave it 4 is for trail markings. It is longer than advertised at approximately 8 miles (as opposed to the advertised 5) and there are a couple of spots along the trail where it is not clear which trail you are supposed to take in order to stay on the one you intended to run. The trail itself is an agility challenge with a lot of rocks and roots that must be paid attention to in order to avoid an ankle sprain. But keep your eyes ahead and be prepared to collapse a knee if you miss an obstacle and don't step right. The trail is beautiful and a lot of fun to run!

    Reply | Thank
  • mtbcharlie

    It's been a few years since I rode this trail but it didn't disappoint. This is a tough trail but very well marked and a ton of fun. There was some undergrowth to deal with but you could still see the trail very well. Well worth the trip!

    Reply | Thank
  • PJ74

    Rode this trail yesterday and it was a little wet but still very fun. Lots of switchbacks and some were tough in the wet conditions and some had some rocks. Overall, not a very technical trail, but has some good climbing, especially if you ride the loop backward. Very fun coming down. I especially like how this trail feels like you're "getting away" and the view at the top is spectacular. Can't wait to come back when there are some leaves on the trees and it's dry.

    Reply | Thank
  • Findog3

    Found this trail thanks to Originally posted as Defeated Creek Campground trails. You can get there by heading to Carthage TN and then following the signs for Cordell Hull Lake and Marina. Turn into the park and then follow the park road for about a mile. The trailhead is on the right, starting at a small parking lot just before you get to the entrance of the RV park. There's a park shelter just down the hill from the trailhead/parking lot that includes bathroom facilities if you need a place to change. As of 9/18/14, the trail seems to be under ridden. Coming off the parking lot, you can head right or left. Both head up and it appears most riders head right. I ended up on Black Bear and followed the white squares painted on trees. As mentioned below, the blue markings are for the hiking trail. Bottom section was rolling with nothing technical. Overgrown badly, often times running through 12 inch foliage that totally obscured the trail. Had to pick out a line by looking for barely visible trail 10 feet to 30 feet away. Once you climbed out of the bottom, this problem faded, but never completely. Black bear leads you to an exit trail offering or you can go right and start the slow, gradual climb up to the top of the mountain on Grizzly Bear trail. Tons of switchbacks with a decent climb at the end. Many large trees down, some totally blocking the trail. Trail has potential, just not ridden much. Weekday ride, so felt like a spider/spider web snow plow most of the time. Probably saw 20 different deer during the ride. Turkeys too. Love to try new places, but this one probably a one-timer for me.

    Reply | Thank
  • djcmmoore   ✓ supporter

    Did a spring ride and highly recommend this trail if you like singletrack and a good climb. Be sure to take a good look at the map as which direction you ride will make a big difference.

    There are no signs indicating where thr trail starts. The blue trail is the hiking trail which goes straight up thr mtn. The bike trail is to the right and is ridable to the top. Lots of good downhill from there.

    Who ever laid this trail our and built it did an excellent job . My hat is off to you guys.

    Ill be back. Thanks.

    Reply | Thank
  • bwilliams302

    This is a great trail!Yes there are a few big hills but the last mile is pretty much all down hill and where I have the most fun.

    Reply | Thank
  • bbo1974

    Trail was very well maintained and well marked 9 mile loop (grizzly bear trail). No scenic overlook at the top as reward for the demanding climb, but the last two miles was a fun downhill ride. If you want to avoid the steep climb, there is a shorter "black bear" trail.* Review edited 6/16/2009

    Reply | Thank