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Level: Intermediate
Length: 8 mi (12.9 km)
Surface: Singletrack
Configuration: Network
Elevation: +260/ -293 ft
Total: 156 riders

Mountain Biking Chickasaw Trace

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#20 of 199 mountain bike trails in Tennessee
#873 in the world

This small park has one of the best rides in Middle TN. Every year there is a race called the Chickasaw Trace Classic, lots of fun. The trail begins with a fun, fast pace, low on intensity and difficulty level but increases as you warm up. The first two-thirds of the trail rank all easy-moderate, it's the final third that rocks! They call it the Trail of Tears and the Black Trail. There are some tough climbs and fast switchbacks. My friends and I usually warm up on the easy trails and double up on the Tears and the Black. And for all of you hardcore singletrack junkies (myself included), ride to the left along the creek and follow across the road and up the hill on the right to follow the most challenging sections backward. There is no better singletrack that I have found in the Nashville area yet and it's only 45 minutes or so from Nashville.

First added by BaneGoorb on Dec 31, 2002. Last updated May 6, 2020. → add an update
Before you go
  • Drinking water: unknown
  • Lift service: unknown
  • Night riding: yes
  • Pump track: unknown
  • Restrooms: unknown
  • 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
From Nashville, TN take I-65 south to Saturn Pky toward Columbia, Tn. Follow road signs into Columbia where you will come to a red light with an Arby's and a McDonalds, turn right there. Follow the signs to Hwy 7 (all right turns). Take a right on Hwy 7 and follow for 3-5 miles and you will see a sign on the left (green-Chickasaw Trace with and Indian head on it). Turn left into the MB parking area and the trailhead is ahead on the left running along the creek. Stay on the trail and it makes a full 7.75 mile loop. There are a few intersections so you change the total distance. Enjoy!!
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Chickasaw Trace Trail map

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Local Info

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Trail checkins

LStadelmeier (on Apr 27, 2021)
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Trail conditions

Good (on Apr 27, 2021)
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Chickasaw Trace videos

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2009 Chickasaw Trace Classic/SERC #2 Cat.…
2008 Chickasaw Trace Classic Downhill Clip
2009 Chickasaw Trace Classic/SERC #2 Pro/Cat…
2010 Chickasaw Trace Classic/SERC #2
2008 Chickasaw Trace Classic Beginner Video
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Mountain Bike Trails Near Columbia, Tennessee

| 1.5 mi

Rider questions

Q: Is this trail smooth enough to pull a buggy

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  • prcleburne113064

    Wow....been a while since I did all of Chickasaw Trace...it has been almost completely redone in some sections, especially in the 2nd half. This trail, which was already one of the better ones in Tennessee now is among the very best! Thanks must go out to the Columbia Cycling Club who maintain and must have revamped this already good trail into a great one.

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  • JollyRogerX

    Very well maintained trail system with something for everybody. Generally very smooth fast trails with cutoffs for some terrain with more challenges. Overall little elevation change on the first 4 miles. A bit more elevation change on the more challenging second 4 miles but worth the effort. The back 4 miles has an additional minor loop to hit the extra features there. Congrats to the folks that keep this trail in shape!

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  • ameyers

    A great trail beginning to end with nothing that is too technical. The direction of travel is reversed on the first Sunday of the month, so I wound up doing the most difficult section first. That was probably for the best though because when I made it to the easier trails, my legs appreciated the break!

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  • 1oldguy!

    Great trail for getting in some good excercise... the first four sections of the loop are pretty easy, hate the top of the rock garden on trail 1, then you get to the last two trails... the trail of tears and the black hills trail... one is a leg burner and the other is just fun... there are some technical areas but not anything to difficult. Very nice trails system and very well kept!

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  • Midmoab

    Rode this trail on a whim as we passed through so we didn't have a great map. Snapped a picture of the map at the trailhead but I suspect some of the loops and shortcuts have been added throughout the years. The trail is really fun and fast. We found only a couple of areas that would be considered technical but all the same a swooping flowing dirt pack can be really rewarding. I didn't have the stamina to complete the trail of tears but I think a second time here knowing what to expect would alter that outcome. I would recommend all but the last two miles of this trail for all skill levels.

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  • FergmanTN

    Have ridden most of the trail multiple times. Have yet to complete the entire loop in one run.

    Starts out easy (other than 1-2 rocky climbs) for first 2 miles and then slowly ramps up the difficulty. There are some very strenuous climbs near the end and 1-2 technical spots. Is rooty in some areas which are very slick when they are wet from rain or dew. Lot of spiderwebs early on a summer morning.

    I just wish there was a nice stretch or two of good jumps, rollers, tabletops, etc. built into the trail somewhere.

    An interesting view in first couple of miles is a Ford pickup truck that has been stuck in the Duck river next to the trail. Fun to speculate what idiot got his truck stuck in the river, .25 miles downstream from a boat ramp.

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  • sandres1996

    Great trail with some good challenges. First 1/2 mile is a little rocky and rooty but after that it smooths out nicely for some fast single track for the next 2.5 to 3 miles. After that the next 4.5 miles you get some nice drops and some good climbs that will challenge you if you are out of shape. Lots of tree roots throughout the ride. Right now the trail is in great shape. I can only make it through once however I know some guys will make a couple loops in a day. Really a very fun ride.

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  • hardyj

    Great speed trail, very well kept. Good short burst climbs and descents. A lot of twist and turns and but with a good flow. Just a fun overall fun ride.

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  • aip2479

    First 4 miles are bland but after that it's fun fun fun some ups and downs mixed with speed great trail

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  • Dogwood

    Great trail! I'm from the Oxford, AL area so I'm used to riding Coldwater. This trail has a lot of fun, tight turns, climbs, and pretty scenery. Good change of pace, and I plan on riding again, soon!

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  • Cotharyus

    Good trail, on the whole. I had a good time on most of this trail, and suspect I should have had a better time on the rest of it, but I was suffering pretty badly from a hurt knee the day a group of us when down to this trail. That made the last section and a half pretty tough for me, but from a standpoint of liking what I saw even though I was struggling with it, this trail for sure gets thumbs up.

    The first couple sections are pretty fast single track next to the river, then a flyer through a field, some rolling stuff up through the woods to the R/C track, and then the pain kicked in - the trail just runs up and down this hill, over and over again. It's actually done relatively cleverly.

    One thing that stood out to me was how well the local cycling club maintains this trail. There were only a few places I felt like a branch was too low, or something needed to be done to the trail, so those guys get major kudos too.

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  • rodneyhumes

    9 miles of trails, some hills, some technical spots, one bridge, some flat fast flowing singletrack one by the river

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  • ****

    Great ride and very well maintained trails. Some nice climbs with some nice man made jumps.
    The final hill is a great cardio teaser and the drops are woth the climb.

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  • guseden

    Fun, simple trail on the south side of Nashville that's well marked and well maintained. Easy to find and the first half of the trail is fairly simple with a few rocks to keep you on your toes.

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  • SoggyNilla

    a great trail, I have ridden it 3 times now and enjoy the nice easy start before the tough terrain starts. some nice rolling swoopy trails along the duck river before starting the trail of tears. Its called this for a reason! Once you get through the tough part its a great finish along a small creek and back into the parking lot

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  • Bigugly69

    How great is it to have your favorite trail right in your back yard?!? I ride this trail weekly...I normally park near the river and start with the River Trail first. (trail 2) Excellent flow from this start. River Trail first *easy*, a nice warm up and confidence builder for new riders. Ravine Loop, *intermediate* excellent flowing downhill after a mild climb, fast fun run. Woodland Trail, *intermediate* rooty, mild climbs, nice flow, fast fun run. Trail of Tears, *advanced* very aptly named. Physically, by far the toughest part of this trail...gives you bragging rights in my opinion. Black Hills Trail, *advanced* OMG this trail is fun! The most technical trail here by far. Short burst climbs, great down hills, obstacles...amazingly fun, but unfortunately you have to run Trail of Tears to get to it...*damn prerequisites*...and from my parking spot..it makes the *trail one* the last...Creek Trail, *intermediate* a really fun, flowing trail and a quick ride except for the "rock garden" climb that I've only managed to make it up a couple of times without spinning out or hanging up *you'll know exactly which part I'm talking about when you get to it*. Creek Trail would be ranked *easy* in my opinion without the rocky section. Really fun section with some short, fast downhills and jumps. The whole loop is an amazing 9 miles "MTB Classic" route or "Jail Break" *8.2 miles* with short cuts. Great signage. Easy Map. Place it on your wish list. Hats off to Columbia Cycling Club! Check it out here http://www.columbiacyclingclub.com/mtb_map-2010.pdf* Review edited 11/2/2011

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  • cczarnik

    This is not the closest trail to me, but the one I ride most often. Extremely well maintained and marked by the Columbia Cycling Club. First 3-4 miles is rolling fast single track with a couple of rock gardens. Several interesting features- doubles, table tops, log piles, and an interesting bridge over a huge fallen tree. Tech picks up after that to ToT, then the last couple of miles it eases up [a little]. As a beginner / intermediate rider, this trail system has enough tech to get the effort level up, but no so tough that you blow up / have to get off the bike and walk sections. Very good workout trail.

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  • gottaluvit

    This is my favorite trail in middle TN. It was very easy to find using mapquest directions an parking was fine. The trail starts out very easy and flown very well. All the trails are very well maintained and have clear trail markers to keep you on the right path. The easy to intermediate were alot of fun and left me ready for the advanced trails. The trail of Tears is called that for a reason. the trail has alot of short uphills and then a longer downhill. It is very challenging and could make you cry in some parts. The Black Forest trail was in my opinion the best trail. There were plenty of fast downhills in both the advanced trails and plenty of other obstacles but this one just seemed to be the better trail to me. All in all the trails were great and i will for shure be returning here. i would suggest doing the entire system at one time. That is what i did and it was a blast.

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  • tdbgwl

    I haven't ridden many different trails yet, but I loved this one. There seemed to be a great diversity of types of trail. There were a couple of hard climbs that were a real challenge for me. There were some really fun down hills. There was, what I would consider my first 'rock garden'. There was a winding trail in and out of a small tree grove. There was a little bit of everything. You could really work on any kind of skills here. It was a bit of a drive for me, almost 2 hours, but I will definitely get back there every chance I can. I am 40 and could stand to get in better shape, but I loved it so much I rode it twice!!

    o...and there were exits every mile or mile and a half if you get hurt or youve had all you can stand.* Review edited 3/17/2011

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