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Nightstalker 05-12-2007 03:07 PM

Nightstalker wants to ride with YOU! North American Tour 2007-2008.
 
1 Attachment(s)
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Nightstalker 05-12-2007 03:20 PM

Ok, this is going to be another one of those, guy quits his job and tours North America threads. But, I'm taking my wife and my home with me.

http://Nightstalker.smugmug.com/photos/149702370-L.jpg

I've got the next 10 months mapped out for our trip across North America, going to places we haven't yet been. We're typically going to be at most campgrounds for a week or two, and I'm hoping to hook up lots you all along the way.

Here's my original itinerary of where we'll be and when:

May - Townsend, TN - Nashville, TN - Land Between the Lakes, KY - St Louis, MO
June - Davenport, IA - DeMoines, IA - Minneapolis, MN - Grand Marais, MN - Medora, ND - Billings, MT - Missoula, MT
July - Deer Lake, MT - West Yellowstone, MT - Victor, ID - West Glacier, MT
August - Banff, AB - Missoula, MT - Seattle, WA - Vancouver, BC
September - Concrete, WA - Seattle, WA - Randle, WA - Estacada, OR
October - North Bend, OR - Medford, OR - Klamath, CA - San Francisco, CA - Pismo Beach, CA (maybe)
November - Reading, PA
December - Key Largo, FL
January - Naples, FL - Tampa, FL - Orlando, FL - Panama City, FL
February - Gulf Coast, TX - Big Bend NP, TX
March - Texas, New Mexico, Arizona
April - Arizona

Here's my new travel itinerary update 9/16/2007

May - Townsend, TN - Nashville, TN - Land Between the Lakes, KY - St Louis, MO
June - Davenport, IA - DeMoines, IA - Minneapolis, MN - Grand Marais, MN - Medora, ND - Billings, MT - Missoula, MT
July - Deer Lake, MT - West Yellowstone, MT - Victor, ID - West Glacier, MT
August - Banff, AB - Missoula, MT - Seattle, WA - Vancouver, BC
September - Concrete, WA - Seattle, WA - Randle, WA - Phoenix, AZ
October - Phoenix, AZ - Reading, PA -Key Largo, FL
November - Key Largo, FL - Reading, PA
December - Phoenix, AZ

DockingPilot 05-12-2007 03:23 PM

How does one do that ?
Have fun ! Is that the new one ?

Nightstalker 05-12-2007 03:31 PM

I'm in Townsend, TN, right now. Went for a ride through Cades Cove last Sunday when we arrived and saw four bears!

Bear #1
http://Nightstalker.smugmug.com/photos/150180201-L.jpg

Fought with the intense traffic (I thought it might not be too busy late on a Sunday, boy was I wrong) until I got to my planned exit, Rich Mountain Road.

Cades Cove from Rich Mountain Road.
http://Nightstalker.smugmug.com/photos/150180318-L.jpg

A little further down the road, I found a momma bear with two cubs! I was little nervous getting off the bike to snap some pictures, but I'm sure you all understand why my hand wasn't all that steady.

Momma and one cub climbing out of a tree.
http://Nightstalker.smugmug.com/photos/150180375-L.jpg

Followed a bunch of dead end roads working my way back to the campsite.
http://Nightstalker.smugmug.com/photos/150180425-L.jpg
http://Nightstalker.smugmug.com/photos/150180479-L.jpg

GB 05-12-2007 04:01 PM

Sounds like a great adventure... with all the toys and comforts of home. :thumb

:lurk

bikeslut 05-12-2007 04:06 PM

How far
 
How much of North America you planning on? You make it out to San Diego, and I'll hook you up with some nice roads/trails, some epic mountain biking, and some area theme parks....(I know some people)

You sure look like you're traveling in style...

ClearwaterBMW 05-12-2007 04:09 PM

wow.....
what an amazing journey this will be
how many Phaeton miles will you drive?
how many miles on the bike do you think you'll cover?

Nightstalker 05-12-2007 04:10 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by DockingPilot
How does one do that ?
Have fun ! Is that the new one ?

Frank, buddypal!! It's a real shame we didn't get to do some more rides together before I took off. I'll be back in Eastern PA for two weeks at Thanksgiving. Perhaps we can hook up on another Barlow ride.

To answer your question, save up for six years, sell your house, live in an apartment for 4 years while you try to get rid of everything you own that won't fit in your RV, then work up the courage to follow through when the time comes. My wife and I both had great paying jobs and had been with our employers for long enough to have a decent amount of vacation every year. Part of our plan is to relocate to another part of the country, most likely Phoenix, get jobs and then start the whole cycle over again. So, if anyone is looking for a great IT guy in the Phoenix area come next April, please PM me.

m0x 05-12-2007 05:17 PM

great idea for mother's day, thanks man

Nightstalker 05-12-2007 06:16 PM

I'm going to save San Diego until we get out to Phoenix, since we'll practically be neighbors. See you next year.

Quote:

Originally Posted by bikeslut
How much of North America you planning on? You make it out to San Diego, and I'll hook you up with some nice roads/trails, some epic mountain biking, and some area theme parks....(I know some people)

You sure look like you're traveling in style...


Nightstalker 05-12-2007 06:41 PM

About 15,000 on the RV. I hope to get 7,000 on the bike, that's about what I usually do in a year.

Quote:

Originally Posted by ClearwaterBMW
wow.....
what an amazing journey this will be
how many Phaeton miles will you drive?
how many miles on the bike do you think you'll cover?


Nightstalker 05-12-2007 07:00 PM

Tail of the Dragon Ride
 
Had a late Thursday night with a sick cat (I was hoping that my cats would die before our trip, but alas, at 15 and 16 they're riding along), so I slept in on Friday and moisied out for a late afternoon jaunt over to the Dragon.

Started on the Foothills Parkway, just a few miles up the road from my campground.

http://Nightstalker.smugmug.com/photos/151732109-L.jpg

I stopped at one of the overlooks and discovered another road just a few feet down a bank from the parkway and away I went. This took me through Top of the World and Happy Valley and connected up with TN RT 129 on the other side of the stream from the Foothills Parkway. I paused for a moment because I thought I had heard sirens, and sure enough, an ambulance was heading down the parkway to 129 and proceeded towards the Dragon. That can't be good. I hopped on 129 behind the ambulance and the two of us were cruising along at 70-75 MPH. The ambulance passed a car and a few moments later, I too passed the car. Looked in my mirror and saw a TN state trooper coming up on me FAST! "Get ready to pull over and get a ticket", was going through my head, but that poor bastard that crashed on the Dragon's misfortune, was my fortune. The trooper continued on behind the ambulance. I continued at a slower pace, a little closer to the posted speed limit.

I stopped to hangout at THE OVERLOOK with some other riders from Alabama and Illinois, and found out that the wreck was a woman on a cruiser who bashed up her leg pretty bad only a few turns up the road.

Dragonistas from Alabama & Illinois

http://Nightstalker.smugmug.com/photos/151732122-L.jpg

And their bikes, more typically seen on the Dragon.

http://Nightstalker.smugmug.com/photos/151732141-L.jpg

Hot Fuzz. I wonder if he'll send me my ticket in the mail?

http://Nightstalker.smugmug.com/photos/151732174-L.jpg

Nightstalker 05-12-2007 07:08 PM

Dragon Ride
 
A gravel road with a bunch of stream crossings called Parson's Branch Road run from Cades Cove in Great Smoky Mts National Park to this point on the Dragon. It was damaged by heavy rain storms in 2003 and has been closed since. The National Park Service is working on it now and hope to have it open again by the end of this summer.

Parsons Branch Road

http://Nightstalker.smugmug.com/photos/151732211-L.jpg

The end of the Dragon, Deals Gap. It's really expanded over the years. They have a beautiful hugh new resturant with big screen LCD TV playing the Weather Channel.

http://Nightstalker.smugmug.com/photos/151732239-L.jpg
http://Nightstalker.smugmug.com/photos/151732263-L.jpg

Nightstalker 05-12-2007 07:24 PM

Dragon Ride
 
I continued South on 129, exploring roads here and there and came across this well graded, wide, gravel road.

http://Nightstalker.smugmug.com/photos/151732310-L.jpg

With this big pipe coming from and going to nowhere??

http://Nightstalker.smugmug.com/photos/151732286-L.jpg

This road eventually brought me out on 28 at Fontana Village, cool beans, let's hit the dam! Crossed over the damn like usual, but instead of turning left to go to the overlook, I turned right to check out a road my GPS was telling me existed. The road was there and there was no GATE, WOW!

Dirt road

http://Nightstalker.smugmug.com/photos/151732336-L.jpg

Of course, this is a National Park and what that means to backroaders is LIMITED ACCESS.

http://Nightstalker.smugmug.com/photos/151732406-L.jpg

But, there seemed to be another road just before the gate, let's see where that goes.

http://Nightstalker.smugmug.com/photos/151732437-L.jpg

What appeared to be a road, quickly turned into a very steep trail with log waterbars. Some whiskey throttle and log crossing technique got me to the top where I found another GATE, and a cemetery, spooky!

http://Nightstalker.smugmug.com/photos/151732360-L.jpg

It took me some negotiation to get my bike turned around and back down the hill, but once down I headed for the Fontana Dam.

Fontana Dam from the top, 480 feet high!

http://Nightstalker.smugmug.com/photos/151732462-L.jpg

Fontana Dam from the campground at the bottom. What a cool place to camp!

http://Nightstalker.smugmug.com/photos/151732482-L.jpg

I found some more dirt roads, here's a collage.

http://Nightstalker.smugmug.com/photos/151732514-L.jpg
http://Nightstalker.smugmug.com/photos/151732549-L.jpg
http://Nightstalker.smugmug.com/photos/151732585-L.jpg

Nightstalker 05-12-2007 07:30 PM

Dragon Ride
 
Storms were a brewing, so I started back to my campground. Stopped on the Dragon for some photos. I'm no Killboy!

http://Nightstalker.smugmug.com/photos/151732635-L.jpg
http://Nightstalker.smugmug.com/photos/151732667-L.jpg
http://Nightstalker.smugmug.com/photos/151732695-L.jpg

I stopped along the Foothills Parkway to snap a shot of the storm.

http://Nightstalker.smugmug.com/photos/151732707-L.jpg

I made it back dry, I sure like that. Sunday I'm heading out with my good buddy KennyH. He knows a lot of the roads in the area and is an excellent rider!


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