ADVrider

Go Back   ADVrider > Riding > Ride reports
User Name
Password
Register Inmates Photos Site Rules Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 10-14-2009, 05:42 PM   #46
klaviator OP
Beastly Adventurer
 
klaviator's Avatar
 
Joined: May 2008
Location: Huntsville, AL
Oddometer: 5,132
I usuelly try to eat a light lunch when I'm riding but that's not possible at Fat Buddies. After about a half hour of good riding we stop at this spot for a power nap.



While we were napping, someone stole our wall to wall sunshine. The scenery is still good. This is Needmore Rd.



After this, it's off to my favorite section of Hwy 28 for some action shots.



__________________
I ride, Therefore I Am.



klaviator is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-14-2009, 09:09 PM   #47
SSG650
n00b
 
Joined: Oct 2009
Oddometer: 2
Thumb Ride pics

Great pics,looks like fun..Steve
SSG650 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-15-2009, 05:39 AM   #48
klaviator OP
Beastly Adventurer
 
klaviator's Avatar
 
Joined: May 2008
Location: Huntsville, AL
Oddometer: 5,132
I consider the 8 mile section of HWY 28 where we shot the last two pics to be on of the best sections of twisty road anywhere. If you want to see more pics and another opinion, go to "Dave and Julie, trippin in the Smokies", page 7. They did a great job taking lots of pics while riding this area.
http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=489489

After 28, it's time to go over Tellico Gap again. I did it twice yesterday and it was just as fun doing it again today. Then we took Wayah Rd to to 19 to Winding Stairs. There is a place on this road I think is really cool. I'm riding along when suddenly, there's someone riding up over my head in the opposite direction.



Here's Steve's view looking down.



I have ridden other dirt roads that have this feature but this is my favorite. I've ridden this road many times but it always seems to catch me by surprise when I first glimpse another bike overhead.

After that it's about another half hour of nice riding back to Andrews. Total miles for today: 194

For dinner, we go back to Elsie's restaurant. I may be an adventure rider but I'm not an adventure eater. I order the same thing as yesterday, country fried steak, and it's great as usual. Steve tries something different and is disappointed.

One more day of riding to go!
__________________
I ride, Therefore I Am.



klaviator is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-15-2009, 06:14 AM   #49
Moooz
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Moooz's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2008
Location: Athens, GA
Oddometer: 349
Great report, great photos. I love riding in this part of the world, you're letting our little secret out of the bag. Looks like a great cycle-therapy trip!
Moooz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-15-2009, 08:49 AM   #50
klaviator OP
Beastly Adventurer
 
klaviator's Avatar
 
Joined: May 2008
Location: Huntsville, AL
Oddometer: 5,132
Quote:
Originally Posted by iDave
klaviator, thanks for pointing me to your thread! Man, you guys and girls living in the Smokeys are so fortunate! One of these days.....

I think the xt-350 is the perfect bike for those fire roads in your report. I had an 89 model, and it was the perfect solo exploring bike. Comfy stock seat too

I've been to this region on numerous occasions, but reports like this one show me how much I have yet to discover .

Love the shot of the pickup with flowers, and this one:



One of these days I'll get the 690SMC down there and hit some of these "roads less traveled."
I was trying to capture the true nature of this rollercoaster of a road. I don't know that I did a really good job. You need to do it with Julie taking pics over your shoulder and some bikes in front of you. She really has a good eye for getting pics of the roads you did.
__________________
I ride, Therefore I Am.



klaviator is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-15-2009, 12:06 PM   #51
klaviator OP
Beastly Adventurer
 
klaviator's Avatar
 
Joined: May 2008
Location: Huntsville, AL
Oddometer: 5,132
Quote:
Originally Posted by Moooz
Great report, great photos. I love riding in this part of the world, you're letting our little secret out of the bag. Looks like a great cycle-therapy trip!
It was cycle-therapy of the highest quality. As far as letting our little secret out of the bag, It’s already out. At least part of it is. Over the last decade or two, more and more motorcycle riders have been discovering the Smokey Mountains. I was one of them. The good news is that most of them just stay on the main roads. October is peak tourist season in the Smoky Mountains. Maggie Valley had quite a few Motorcyclists. All of the guests at the motel we were staying at were on motorcycles. We saw a lot of motorcycles on the main roads we were on (BRP, 19, 276, Cherohala, etc). I’m sure that Deal’s Gap had a huge crowd. We spent most of our time off the beaten path. On Sunday I saw a small group of dual sport riders on a gravel rd in GSMNP. After that I did not see another motorcycle while off the beaten path. That’s in six days of riding!

I’m not sure why that is but I think it is because of three reasons. First, most motorcycle riders, like most people, are just like sheep. They are content to stay on the main path with the rest of the herd. In my 21 years in the Navy, I moved to a different state every 2 or 3 years. When I got to a new state, I would go exploring on my motorcycle because I wanted to know “where does that road go.” On several occasions, I went riding with some locals who had lived in the area far longer than I had, and took them down some roads they had never been on.

Second, most people ride motorcycles that are not the best choice for exploring. I was willing to explore on my street bikes, but started exploring a lot more when I got an adventure, and then dual sport bikes. Back in the late eighties I took a trip to Death Valley on my Yamaha Venture touring bike. There was a really neat looking one way gravel road going into a narrow canyon that I would have loved to explore, but I didn’t. When leaving the valley, I took an out-of-the-way paved road over the Panamint Mountains. As I rode along the road surface started to deteriorate. Then it briefly turned to dirt with a frozen creek to cross. Luckily it was a small creek. I was tempted to turn around but it was a long way back. I crossed the creek but that trip really got me thinking about getting a bike more suitable for exploring. I would not have started down that road had I known what I was in for. Many great roads in the Smokies turn to gravel. I usually wouldn't go down them on a street bike. I did ride TN 32 including the mile and a half of gravel at the end on my EX500. It's definitely more fun on a dual sport or adventure bike

Third, the main roads are generally easier to ride well on. For sport riders, it’s easier to feel like an expert rider. Take Deal’s Gap as an example. It is well engineered, well maintained, has gradual and constant grades, and no really tight or unpredictable corners. A good rider can make good time and really feel like he or she is riding the bike near its limits. Get on some of the side roads and you may find steep hills, blind crests, unpredictable and really tight curves, poor quality pavement, and unexpected gravel. It is much harder to feel like a great rider on these roads. What you usually won’t find are LEOs or traffic. I don’t think that most riders will ever develop a taste for these kinds of roads. I used to prefer the main, easy to ride roads. I still enjoy riding them but find myself trying to get off the beaten path more and more. This was the first trip I took to this area where I did not go to Deal’s Gap.
__________________
I ride, Therefore I Am.




klaviator screwed with this post 10-17-2009 at 04:00 PM
klaviator is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-15-2009, 12:30 PM   #52
klaviator OP
Beastly Adventurer
 
klaviator's Avatar
 
Joined: May 2008
Location: Huntsville, AL
Oddometer: 5,132
I just thought of one more reason people don't explore, it's one I wrestle with myself. When you have a limited amount of time and don't even have enough to ride all the great rides you already know, it's tough to go off and explore somewhere that may or may not be worth riding.

Anyway, the point of all this is not to put anyone down. I guess most people are adventurous in their own way. My point is; Because of the reasons above, even as more riders come to the Smokies, much of this area will remain "off the beaten path" because most of them won't go there.
__________________
I ride, Therefore I Am.




klaviator screwed with this post 10-15-2009 at 01:46 PM
klaviator is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-15-2009, 01:28 PM   #53
klaviator OP
Beastly Adventurer
 
klaviator's Avatar
 
Joined: May 2008
Location: Huntsville, AL
Oddometer: 5,132
Day 6, October 9th.

Enough commentary, time for more ride report. We look outside It's cloudy and looks like it rained a little bit. here's the view:



The weather forecast calls for some nasty weather late afternoon so we're hoping to get the ride done before it shows up. First, a quick breakfast,



then we put on our dirt gear and head off. From Andrews, we cross the four lane, Start up the mountain on pavement, and within a couple of minutes we're on FS 304, heading across the Snowbird Mountains. Didn't stop for many pics. Took this one to show what the road was like. One curve after another, hard packed dirt and gravel, and lots of trees.



FS 304 starts near Tatum Gap, the "gravel dragon". It's a longer ride, and in my opinion, also better. From FS 304, a mix of pavement and dirt takes us to the base of the Cherohala Skyway. We skip the skyway and head up FS 81.



We cross under the Skyway. Here's looking back the way we came.



And this is where whe're going.

__________________
I ride, Therefore I Am.




klaviator screwed with this post 10-17-2009 at 04:01 PM
klaviator is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-15-2009, 02:41 PM   #54
klaviator OP
Beastly Adventurer
 
klaviator's Avatar
 
Joined: May 2008
Location: Huntsville, AL
Oddometer: 5,132
It's a nice ride downhill on FS217, then right on River road until we stop for this.



Then off towards Tellico Plains. We stop a a burger/hot dog/ice cream place on the river just outside of town.




There were some kids playing in the river and climbing up a tree and swinging from a rope into the water on the other side. I tried to get a pic of one making a splash but couldn't get the timing right. The girl on the lower left cut her finger. Steve was able to be a good ambassador for the motorcycle community by digging a band aid out of his back pack

__________________
I ride, Therefore I Am.




klaviator screwed with this post 10-15-2009 at 03:08 PM
klaviator is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-15-2009, 05:40 PM   #55
klaviator OP
Beastly Adventurer
 
klaviator's Avatar
 
Joined: May 2008
Location: Huntsville, AL
Oddometer: 5,132
After lunch we head into town. Steve fuels up his DR. I'm on a KLR.... I don't need no stinking fuel. Then it's around the corner to Tellico Motorcycle Outfitters.



Nice place. I ordered the Klim Dakar pants I was wearing from them a few weeks back. They had a clearance sale on their Klim stuff. I lucked out and they had my size and a color I liked. They also had the AFX dual sport helmet in stock. I normally wear medium helmets but need a large in this helmet. Maybe my head had swelled? It fit OK, but I'm going to wait and see what else comes out. It's nice to see someplace that actually stocks some dual sport riding gear. If you need a detailed map of the area, including the FS roads, there's a bookstore just to the left which sells them.

Time to ride again. This time we're off to Farr Gap. We start off on some twisty and narrow paved roads.



Notice whats missing in this pic?

As we're riding along I'm thinking: "Double Yellow lines?" "We don't neeed no steeenkin double yellow lines!"

I also remember the first time I rode into this area. Riding on a narrow paved road I came up behind two horse drawn covered wagons, just like the ones in the western movies. Now that would have been a great pic!

Eventually we're back on dirt roads and more nice scenery

__________________
I ride, Therefore I Am.




klaviator screwed with this post 10-17-2009 at 06:32 AM
klaviator is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-15-2009, 05:54 PM   #56
spacefighter
Adventurer
 
Joined: May 2009
Location: Dayton, OH - Wenatchee, WA
Oddometer: 49
i'll be in this area first part of next week. i am so excited and can't wait. signed up for the new performance center deal and we are doing a 3 day dual sport ride all through the area. weather is supposed to be sunny. thanks for the nice rr.
spacefighter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-15-2009, 11:02 PM   #57
knybanjo
kinda slow
 
knybanjo's Avatar
 
Joined: May 2006
Location: out in the clover patch
Oddometer: 22,426

I'm glad the weather finally cooperated for you!

Those new gates that seem to be going up all over the place really have me bummed out...but it won't stop me from getting out there and enjoying what I can....just like y'all did!!

Nice report! ...got anymore pics?
__________________
SmugMug coupon 0E8WP3kJcvvbY save $5 The Banjo Rides


knybanjo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2009, 09:07 AM   #58
klaviator OP
Beastly Adventurer
 
klaviator's Avatar
 
Joined: May 2008
Location: Huntsville, AL
Oddometer: 5,132
Quote:
Originally Posted by knybanjo

I'm glad the weather finally cooperated for you!

Those new gates that seem to be going up all over the place really have me bummed out...but it won't stop me from getting out there and enjoying what I can....just like y'all did!!

Nice report! ...got anymore pics?
Gates and No Motorized Vehicles signs are everywhere in N Ga. Most of the challenging off road riding has been shut down. At least there are still more good dirt and paved roads around here than almost anywhere else. It may suck to lose a lot of good riding, but trust me, it's still better than living in Florida or southern Michigan or a lot of other places.

As far as the weather, we've been pretty lucky. It's rained, but not on us. The pavement has been mostly dry and the off road has been dust free. A little more sunshine would have made the scenery better but I really can't complain. Unfortunately, all that is about to change. More pics and ride report coming up.
__________________
I ride, Therefore I Am.



klaviator is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2009, 09:37 AM   #59
klaviator OP
Beastly Adventurer
 
klaviator's Avatar
 
Joined: May 2008
Location: Huntsville, AL
Oddometer: 5,132
After taking the last pic, It starts raining and we head up the road to Farr Gap. I Ignore the rain because I love this road. Constant curves on a hard packed dirt and rock road. I'm having a blast and even keeping up with Steve. This road is perfect for someone wishing to work on their flat track technique. Last time we did this stretch we stopped for a nap. Not happening today as the rain is getting harder. Also last time Steve ran over a large rattlesnake. No snakes in the road today. Then Farr Gap and back to the bottom. The rain had stopped so we stopped for this pic.



Then we head over to the Cherohala where we stop to take in the view.



We didn't stay too long. Although it wasn't raining at this time, It was looking ugly, the wind was picking up and the temperature was dropping. To make matters worse, we were going to a much higher elevation. We got back on the bikes and rode. The weather got worse until we got to this.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
__________________
I ride, Therefore I Am.




klaviator screwed with this post 10-16-2009 at 10:10 AM
klaviator is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2009, 10:36 AM   #60
DBM
Let's Just Ride!!
 
DBM's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2007
Location: Floriduh
Oddometer: 1,918
I have been on most if not all of those roads/trails in my day. I agree, the last 10 miles of north Hwy 28 is just about as good as it gets for grippy twisties.

Great RR. Last time I saw Steve, I was chasin him all over Cheaha Mountain.

DBM
__________________
08 530 exc
07 XR650L
04 525 exc

DBM is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Share

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

.
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump


Times are GMT -7.   It's 07:10 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ADVrider 2011-2014