Day 4: Athens, AL to Cosby, TN
Miles 1540-1909 (369 miles)
A day of Turns.
I got up early, though after unpacking my whole bike in the hotel, it took longer to get packed and moving in the morning. The comfy bed didn't help motivate either.
Again, US 72 through AL, and up to I24 with a quick jaunt on the highway around Chattanooga. Onto US64 in Cleveland, and off towards NC and the Dragon. That was the destination here!
I took very few pictures this day, but simply took in the sites, sounds and smells, and most of all, the roads.
I did ride US129 from Deal's Gap
and it was AWESOME. I have some video, that will maybe eventually get uploaded to something somewhere...
I got stuck behind a suburban for a while that would not let myself and a Harley by. I finally stopped at a wide spot (the only significant wide spot?), and got off the bike. Got to talking a couple there that were waiting for the tow truck to come pick up their bike. Not because they wrecked, but rather, had been pulled over.
The comment was made that "It turns out they tow your bike when you get stopped with no motorcycle endorsement." Really? Here i thought if you were stopped with no endorsement, they'd just write you a ticket, and send you along on your way - on you motorcycle that you're not allowed to ride. Only seems reasonable to me
After US129, i headed North along the Foothills Parkway, then into Townsend for some much needed fried catfish, grits, whitebeans, and more water. Rode from there through the park to Gatlinburg. Wow. That is... something else. Come out of the woods into a mini Vegas, complete with traffic, Tourons, and more neon and T shirt shops than should be in one place... Needless to say, I didn't spend long in Gatlinburg. Only long enough to talk to an employee at the Nantahala Outdoor Center, who recommended Cosby Campground as a slightly cheaper National Park Campground (at only $12... i long for the BLM/National Forest Land in Colorado from my college years).
Anyway, rode along the edge of the park, and camped at Cosby. Wicked tired, slightly dehydrated (i really noticed how much the curves were making me sweat here. Hard work, hot, and humid), and ready for some off-bike time.