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Level: Intermediate
Length: 30 mi (48.3 km)
Surface: Singletrack
Configuration: Network
Elevation: +4,426/3 ft
Total: 732 riders

Mountain Biking Bent Creek

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#3 of 540 mountain bike trails in North Carolina
#14 in the world

Bent Creek is the go-to trail system for the greater Asheville area, and with the deeply-ingrained mountain bike culture in the Asheville/Brevard area, and Western North Carolina in general, Bent Creek sees a ton of traffic. There are several different trailheads and ways to access the trail, and many weekends all of the trailheads are all filled to overflowing. Cars that can't fit into the parking lots line the nearby forest roads, and Lake Powhatan Campground is usually filled as well. This might be the busiest mountain bike trail in North Carolina... and as you'll see if you ride here, there's a good reason for it!

The trail system is composed of two very different areas: a flatter area, and a much more mountainous section on the ridge.

There are numerous singletack and doubletrack trails in the lower, much flatter areas near Lake Powhatan. These are great beginner trails or warm up/cool down sections. These segments include Deerfield Loop, Explorer Loop, Homestead, Lower Sidehill Trail, Pinetree Loop, and others.

If you're looking for a climbing challenge and/or some killer high-speed descending, the place to go is definitely towards the ridge. Green's Lick is the widely-renowned descent, and if you're riding here, you have to ride it! Green's Lick is very fast, flowy, jump-filled, full of massive berms and wallrides to rail (even bigger than those on Ingles Field Gap and Wolf Branch), a few rock gardens, several technical rock features, and offers absolutely no respite until you reach the bottom!

Other trails on the ridge that work well as climbs or descents include Ingles Field Gap, Wolf Branch, and others.

First added by Greg Heil on Dec 31, 2002. Last updated May 11, 2020. → add an update
Before you go
  • Drinking water: unknown
  • Lift service: unknown
  • Night riding: yes
  • 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
Hwy. 191 south of Asheville, near the Blue Ridge Parkway entrance. You can go through the Arboretum and hang left, or take Bent Creek Ranch Rd. Don't worry, you'll see all the other mountain bikers about 1/4 mile from Lake Powhatan....
System trails (22)
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Bent Creek Trail map

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Local Info

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Trail checkins

B0B (on May 30, 2021)
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Trail conditions

Good (on Sep 15, 2019)
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Camping & Lodging

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Bent Creek videos

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GoPro HD Trial 1 - Bent…
Bent Creek - Mt Biking 12NOV10
Green's Lick
Bent Creek - Green's Lick -…
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Mountain Bike Trails Near Asheville, North Carolina

Beginner | 33 mi
Intermediate | 5 mi
Intermediate | 0 mi

Rider questions

Q: Which is the flatter section?
A: There's a short trail around the lake starting from Hard Times trail head and a series of service roads around that area which are pretty forgiving. If you want elevation gain with great single track downhill take the North Boundary Road and head down Ingles Gap Connector... a favorite ride.

Q: e-mtb's allowed?
A: Not on Singletrack. Plenty of Gravel roads though

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  • plant guy steve

    Good trail but lots of foot traffic. Had to pull over several times and let them by. Good trail with several hills and exposed roots.

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  • CyberBomb

    Amazing trail system filled with challenges for all. A great outdoor destination. A must for any mountain biker ???????

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  • CyberBomb

    The trails were nice and cool. I have to get back in shape. I climbed some and walked some. Aside from that, I rode 75% of the trails like a bat out of hell. A maniac. There was no stopping me, I was @ the best that I've been in years...

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  • Walterbanner
    Reviewing Green’s Lick:

    I love Greens Lick! I think the trail is extremely fast, semi technical, great burms, you have option to single track climb it or fire road up. Depends on the day.

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  • rmap01   ✓ supporter
    Reviewing Green’s Lick:

    What a fun downhill! If you're at Bent Creek this is a must. The climb is no cakewalk but it is definitely worth it if you like flying downhill over rocky sections and with opportunities to get plenty of air. If you take it at speed (hard not to) be prepared for a thrilling, yet bone rattling experience..

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  • rmap01   ✓ supporter

    Rode here last year. There's a wide variety of trails for different skill levels. Be prepared for some climbing. Green's Lick is a must!

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  • MikeyO

    Great Area!!! A lot of uphill and downhill. Beautiful country. Make sure you are in shape. More Roots and rocks than I expected. I would definitely put some gnarly tires on. I only had a rock razor on the rear and got a pinch flat. I was surprised I didn't cut my tire. The rock is a shale type sharp rock.

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  • drewm2018
    Reviewing Green’s Lick:

    Fantastic downhill run. Rocky sections with moderate sized jumps and high berms. I prefer to get to the top climbing Ingles field Gap for a more gradual ascent.

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  • nate_smith_1029

    amazing trails. i had a great time riding all day. try deer loop trails there are about 10-20 rollers in a row. would ride again. one thing that mad me not give 5 starts is the lack of well constructed burms. the trails could really have a very different and better fell if there were even as few as 5 burms. maybe i just needed to ride black diamond trails to get the burms i looked for but still amazing.

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  • Chrismj51

    Great trails close to town. I enjoy deer field loop and hard times trails.

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  • Aaron Chamberlain   ✓ supporter

    I've only ridden here a couple times, because usually when I make the trek to NC, it's to ride in Brevard. Fun trails, but as many mentioned, they can be busy.

    Green's Lick is not to be missed if you ride here.

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  • Jeff Houston

    Trails were in great shape despite some rain. It wasn't too crowded either.

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  • sleahcim

    I know a lot of people love this trail but I attribute it mostly to its proximity to Asheville. While the trails are fun I don't consider it even close to a 5 as so many of these ratings reflect. Too crowded, too used, not enough variety for my taste. But that's just me. Obviously many others feel differently.

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  • jcarter29072

    AWESOME first ride here today! 8-13-2016. Meet a group of 3 locals and we went to the top of a mountain (very advanced), and literally FLEW down! What a blast! I can only remember Star wars, and 5 points I think, but the trail condition and fun factor was off the chart! Parking was thick on a Saturday around 8:30am , but was very worth while coming out here today. I tried hard to find an address, best way is to GPS to Bent Creek Baptist Church, the entrance is across the street from the church. Hope this helps someone.

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  • dlaido

    Good mix of trails. Plenty of beginner trail but must hit Green's Lick. It's a pretty good climb to get there (nothing steep but seemed relentless for a Florida rider) but well worth it for the 15 minute descent.

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  • David Brow&
    Reviewing Boyd Branch / 665:

    Start from the top. Only the first short segment has any difficulty. Cross the creek and go all out. There are no surprises past this point and I max my top gear every time. A fun short trail you can simply fly through.

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  • bikeit420   ✓ supporter

    Rode here on a weekday around noon. Was pretty busy for a weekday. On a trip from NY to FL and hit this on the way. Awesome trail in the Asheville area. Lots of reddish clay and rolling downhills. Nice rideable berms and great trail system. Pretty easy to find your way around. Plenty of parking and restrooms. Several creek crossings and plenty of beginner to intermediate and some crazy nice downhill sections. Some short climbs but no shame in walking when you old and fat like me. If your in Asheville area, don't miss this. Very busy trail. Pretty easy to bail and find your way back to your car.

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  • Colton Lock

    GREAT trail system very close to downtown Asheville. A good mix of beginner & expert trails. Make sure to do Greens Lick down then take a LEFT to climb back to 5 points. Then head down Ingles (which you probably climbed) for a decent just as fun as GL but is often over looked.

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