Hampton resident opens 95 acres of land for public use

When his parents owned the property, Hampton resident Jason Wills said they kept everything there largely untamed, from overgrown grass to unkept ponds and streams and the lack of a solid road leading to it all. Now, after months of work, Wills said he wants to open up his 95-acre property in the mountains of Hampton for public use.

The property fell into his hands after his mother died last year.

“I had the chance of selling it,” he said.

However, Wills said he eventually changed his mind, deciding it would be in better use providing its natural beauty to locals and tourists alike.

“It is a good place to get away,” he said.

711 Simerly Creek Road’s only landmark is a small bridge connected to a half-concealed gravel road in the middle of a tight bend in the road, unintentionally concealing almost 100 acres of untouched natural beauty in Carter County, including five ponds, 11 different streams and even several historical cabins.

Wills said he started working to shape up the property last winter, even making treks in the snow to chop trees and spending two days at a time just to mow.

“It takes a lot of hard work,” he said.

All of this effort is leading to Wills opening up a kind of Airbnb, where a family can rent the property for a few days to vacation in the mountains, a different kind of experience from simply visiting a state park like Sycamore Shoals or Roan Mountain.

“It is just you and your family here,” Wills said. “This is a place your family can come and not have to look over your shoulder.”

Wills said he stocks the ponds with trout, bass and other fish, and renters are allowed to fish up a few during their stay.

The condo itself has all the modern luxuries of present-day condos, including a washer and dryer, a game room with a pool table and TV as well as complete internet access.

Outside the condo, however, he said he is most proud of how he has managed to keep the property largely uncontaminated by the cities and civilization near it.

“It is like it really is in the 1900’s,” Wills said. “There is no litter around here.”

Wills said he plans to officially open the property on Monday, July 1, with future plans to include a small parking lot at the front of the property. He said the condo can serve as a cheaper place to stay than local hotels.

For specific details on pricing for booking and/or event gatherings, those interested can contact Wills at 423-426-7569.

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