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Level: Advanced
Length: 5 mi (8 km)
Surface: Singletrack
Configuration: Loop
Elevation: +284/ -282 ft
Total: 36 riders

Mountain Biking Lees-McRae College

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#105 of 543 mountain bike trails in North Carolina
#1,939 in the world

Home of the 2007 & 2008 NCCA National Mountain Bike Championships!
The Lees-McRae College mountain bike course is made up of a 5 mile loop filled with a variety of exciting challenges. It is 50% single track (half of that is passable), with two-lane forestry roads, a gravel road, and a bit of pavement for good measure.
There is plenty of technical climbing and descending to challenge. Some of the trail is hard pack, and other parts will be soft and loamy, but most all of it has its rocks and roots to overcome. There are sections of rock garden, off-camber, slippery rocks, switch-backs, power-climbs, taxing descents, all complimented with berms, bridges, and drops. Once you make the last descent there is a mile-long gravel road climb to the finish.
The campus also offers a 1-mile Short Track and a Dual Slalom Course with jumps, rollers, drops, tabletops, and berms.

First added by EZ-E on Oct 24, 2007. Last updated Apr 30, 2020. → add an update
Before you go
  • Drinking water: unknown
  • Lift service: unknown
  • Night riding: unknown
  • 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
Campus Address: 191 Main Street West; Banner Elk, NC 28604 Lees-McRae is best reached from Boone, North Carolina, by highways N.C. 105 to route 184 which leads to Banner Elk, a distance of 17 miles. The College is reached from Johnson City, Tennessee, 65 miles to the west, by highways U.S. 19E to Elk Park and route 194 to Banner Elk.
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Lees-McRae College Trail map

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Local Info

Club Sponsor


Local Bike Shop

Trail checkins

Chandler Roffey (on Sep 22, 2019)
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Upcoming Events

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Trail conditions

Good (on Aug 19, 2017)
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Camping & Lodging

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Lees-McRae College videos

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The slolom at LMC Lees-McRae college…
Mountain bike race at Lees-McRae
Lees-McRae Slolom course top section
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Rider questions

Q: Where to see if trail is open

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  • Lizwarlick

    Good climbs to get the blood flowing, very technical descent with lots of sharp rocks. I wouldn't suggest the singletrack loop with less than 100 mm travel.. dual slalom was fun

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  • Skills With Phil

    These Trails are built and maintained by the students on the cycling of Lees McRae College. There's a little bit of everything XC and DH. The main course features a proper rock garden that typically results in rider walking it their first few times through.

    Over by the athletics fields and the Softball fields, there's a nice dual slalom course which rides well during the months when school are in session.

    Every year the team adds new trails features, so these trails are being constantly worked on.

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  • [email protected]

    Could be a really fun, technical trail. Rode as ice and snow were melting (it WAS open). It was very soupy and slippery which made the technical sections pretty damn hard. Did some hike-a-biking as a result. Could definitely see it being a great trail when dry. Poorly marked/routed. It is a choose your path trail if you are unfamiliar with it. You cannot really get lost so don't worry to much about which way you go. Overall pretty fun.

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  • Joeb

    Similar to Polar Tent in Charlotte with all the switchbacks, but VERY much more technical.
    Lots of opportunities to take side jaunts with built up jumps! Make sure your insurance is up to date!!

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  • EZ-E

    Spectator Info for the 2007 Collegiate Nationals Race(Oct 25-28):

    The best areas for spectators to watch the race will be at the starting line located on the lacrosse practice fields, in the bleachers set up at the Mill Pond and along the road by the Mill Pond. Parking for the cross country events will be available at Lees-McRae’s athletic complex located on Hickory Nut Gap Road in Banner Elk.

    The short track consists of a one mile long loop with a little of everything from flat, open sections to a short climb. Open spectator areas will be available in the middle of the course on the lacrosse practice fields and in the woods along the course, and bleachers will be set up at the finish. Parking for the short track races will be available at Lees-McRae’s athletics complex.

    On Saturday you can also catch the practice for the dual slalom events from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on the dual slalom course near the lacrosse practice fields at Lees-McRae’s athletics complex.

    The weekend comes to a close on Sunday, Oct. 28, with the final competition: the dual slalom. Qualifying will begin at 8 a.m. with the dual slalom finals taking place afterwards. A favorite of mountain bike spectators, the dual slalom is a head to head competition down a manmade course usually with gated turns (much like ski racing). The course usually has manmade obstacles such as berms, jumps, bumps and the occasional drop. One side of the dual slalom course is cleared for spectators, and bleachers will be set up at the finish line.

    Top Lees-McRae riders to watch in the weekend’s competitions are Scott Stewart, a junior of Oxford, MI, and Mike Anderson, a freshman of Alpen, MI, in the cross country and short track competitions. Top downhill and dual slalom riders are Aaron Bradford, a senior of Auburn, WA, and Ben Hulse, a freshman of Mooresville, NC. Bradford will be racing in all four events and competing for the overall omnium title.

    Lees-McRae College, who finished on top of the USA Cycling Collegiate National Rankings in Div. I for the 2006-2007 season, is a favorite for the Collegiate Mountain Bike Nationals. Other favorites to watch during the competition are Fort Lewis College of Durango, CO; University of Colorado at Boulder; Lindsey Wilson College of Columbia, KY; and Colorado State University.

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