10 Best US Mountain Bike Towns with the Lowest Cost of Living

4. Knoxville, Tennessee

  • COL Index: 81.4
  • Median Home Price: $136,000
  • Population: 186,000; 869,000 metro area
  • Miles of Singletrack: 200+

Knoxville, TN has been on our radar as an up-and-coming mountain bike town ever since they won $100,000 in the Bell Built Grant back in 2015. The result of that grant was the Devil’s Racetrack, a technical, professionally-built downhill trail filled with massive features.

But with over 200 miles of singletrack within 25 miles of downtown, there’s so, so much more to be ridden! Charlie Morgan, Knoxville local and freelance writer for Singletracks.com, recommends checking out “Barn Burner at Baker’s Creek (Devil’s Racetrack for experts), South Loop, Ross Marble, Flow at Mead’s Quarry, and Lost Chromosome at Fork of The River WMA.”

New trails at Windrock. Photo courtesy of Stephanie Wells, CTTP Executive Director | Anderson County Tourism Council

The Windrock Bike Park is also located within 25 miles of Knoxville and boasts super steep, burly DH runs built and managed by none other than pro downhiller Neko Mulally.

Yeah, maybe you never considered Knoxville a mountain bike town before… but it’s time to change your perspective! Defining Knoxville as a “town” is a bit tricky, and with a population of 186,000 (869,000 in the greater metro area), this is the highest-populated “town” on our list. But if you’re attracted to the accessibility of big city amenities like retail, restaurants, and a reasonably-sized airport, Knoxville could be the best choice on our list. That, and you can’t argue with the cost of living numbers.

Henley Street Bridge in Knoxville, TN. Photo: Tanner White via Flickr Creative Commons

The COL index is 81.40–the lowest number on our list. The median home price of $136,000 isn’t the absolute lowest on this list, but for a relatively large city it’s pretty impressive. That said, the market is pretty hot in Knoxville right now, and Zillow notes that the median price of homes listed for sale is $209,900. Knoxville is clearly on the rise.

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