Commune with nature in William Hastie Natural Area. Also known simply as Hastie, this trail zone reflects the character of the early days of South Knoxville and the Urban Wilderness. It’s got a boatload of natural feeling singletrack in a big, beautiful forest. A ride here will provide experiences that range from gliding along smooth and fast sections to picking your way through technical rocks and roots. The setting couldn’t be more peaceful, and throughout the network, you can gaze out and feel like you are far away from everything. Hastie is one of the places that has a fair bit of undulating terrain, meaning there is plenty of change in elevation throughout. It’s not all up or down and has a number of varying routes that offer everything from punchy climbs and descents to natural contouring flow. Hastie can be combined with Baker Creek Preserve and the Year Round Get Down for a bigger ride or be a destination by itself.
There is no particular right or wrong way to ride Hastie, it can be different every time and always be fun. Although every trail in the network retains its own character, some are quite memorable, including Dryer, Yellow Jacket, and A,E,I,O,U.
Throughout the Urban Wilderness you will come across various artifacts like random yard art and wayward camp trailers. Hastie has a few including the front of a clothes dryer on a route named, you guessed it, Dryer. It’s a must-do if you like trails that go downhill. Across the forest, the sublime singletrack is found on Yellow Jacket, one of the fun contouring trails tucked into the big trees. Often overlooked, it’s worth the effort to add it to your ride. After you’ve enjoyed some bliss, don’t miss the latest in rocks and technical riding…A,E,I,O,U. This trail is challenging with plenty of slow-speed sections where strength, balance, and bike handling skills are helpful to navigate the trail. It’s a true Hastie experience.
Perhaps the best of Hastie is what is yet to come. In early 2022, new trail construction is underway that will result in 2+ new miles of singletrack fun.
Words & Photos - The Wide Eyed World