Flatwoods Road to 87A

Total Miles


767.27 ft



Technical Rating



Best Time

Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Trail Overview

Running Flatwoods road from Hickory Tree TN to HWY 421. This includes a section of Forest Service Road 87A when open. The main route is open year-round and is a combination of gravel and unimproved pavement. The section of 87A towards Fish Dam Creek and follows parts of Flatwoods Horse trail is a combination of gravel, mud, and unimproved road with moderately deep ruts and rocky sections. There is a plane crash site on this route that is well worth exploring, from a Douglas DC3 in 1959. You can research this further on plane crashes on South Holston Mountain. The section of 87A may or may not be open, depending on the forestry gates and time of year. We made it through all the way to the second to last gate, only to find it locked and having to backtrack. Still well worth the trip.

Photos of Flatwoods Road to 87A

Flatwoods Road to 87A
Flatwoods Road to 87A
Flatwoods Road to 87A


The main route is accessible with any 4x4 and most all 2wd vehicles under normal conditions. The alternate spur is accessible by all 4x4 vehicles with decent tires and knowledge of driving off-road.

Technical Rating


Status Reports

Matt Becker
Apr 27, 2024
Permanently Closed
Most of the loop on the trail between 87A and 87B is a horse trail. A small section of 87A is legal to ride on if the gate is open but we spoke to a game warden who was closing the gate due to too many jeeps on the horse trail.
Andrew Landicho Jr
Feb 03, 2024
Summer Route may be permanently blocked by rocks at 87a gate (as pictured) about half a mile northbound. did Elizabethton to the paved road past the lake campground then turned around. other than the short section of 87a up to the mentioned gate. the gravel road is trivial and could be safely navigated in a 2wd sedan when dry. little to no spots for rooftop dispersed camping, but still a quiet little trail. was absolutely no problem in stock Forester. also encounted some quite eccentric locals.
Timothy Joiner
Dec 29, 2023
87a gate was locked but all other trails were open. Easy trail that has potential to be harder with heavy rain.
Greg Scully
Aug 05, 2023
Dirt Bike
Temporarily Closed
Closed Gate

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