Limestone Cove Loop

Limestone Cove Loop, 39.4 miles, 3,395’ elevation gain

● start/end at Hampton Trails Bicycle Shop, 446 US-321, Hampton, TN

Much of this great route is used on the Roan Groan Pro Route, so you’re in for a challenge.  It starts at Hampton Trails Bike Shop, located six miles south of Elizabethton, and follows busy US-19E (wide, clean shoulder, though) for about five miles. The climb up Simerly Creek is popular in the summer with local cyclists. A cool, bubbling stream parallels the winding road that is its namesake. After four miles of climbing, a welcome sight is the “Unicoi County” sign at the top of Woodby Hill (elevation 2,587’) – careful of bad pavement in a few places on the descent.  Limestone Cove, surrounded by towering mountains, is remarkable for its pastoral beauty and Civil War history. In 1863 recruits enroute to join the Union army were ambushed and killed by Confederate troops. Dr. David Bell’s Limestone Cove house, where Union sympathizers gathered, was burned down. On TN-107 a roadside historical marker at Bell Cemetery tells the story. Sciota Road climbs back to Carter County. More hills ahead on Dry Creek Road and Mary Patton Highway. Follow the unpaved but road-bike-friendly Tweetsie Trail through Elizabethton to the trailhead at Hatcher Lane. US-19E has four lanes and a wide shoulder for the 3.5 miles back to Hampton.

Cue Sheet: Limestone Cove Loop
Miles Action and Landmark/Road
0.0 start at Hampton Trails Bike Shop
0.0 left onto US-321/TN-67
0.4 left onto 1st Avenue
0.6 proceed onto Church Street
0.7 left onto US-19E
5.0 right onto Simerly Creek Road (TN-173)
9.4 Woodby Hill Church, enter Unicoi County
11.3 Limestone Cove
11.5 right onto TN-107
12.0 Bell Cemetery
16.4 right onto Sciota Road
22.2 right onto Dry Creek Road (TN-361)
24.7 left onto Gap Creek Road (TN-362)
25.8 left onto Mary Patton Highway (TN-362)
30.4 cross West G Street
30.5 right onto the Tweetsie Trail, follow through Elizabethton
35.0 Snap-On Tools
35.4 right onto Hatcher Lane
35.7 right onto TN-19E
38.5 left onto First Ave. (before McDonald’s)
38.9 left onto US-321/TN-67
39.4 end at Hampton Trails Bike Shop