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Old 06-05-2014, 01:15 PM   #1561
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To the right, South, of the restaurant is a Souvenir Shop known as the Dragon General Store and the Gas Station.



With a nice Dragon Skeleton on the roof that reminded me of the Jersey Devil !



Looking back from down the road.



Near the road is the Deals Gap Motorcycle Resort sign.





Looking down from US-129.



And to the left of the Restaurant is the Motel.



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Deals Gap, NC, Gas Station @14
Deals Gap, NC, Motel @14
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Old 06-05-2014, 01:36 PM   #1562
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Then of course there is the Tree of Shame.



A sad reminder of getting carried away while riding a motorcycle.



"No Gain, & a lot of PAIN!!!!" the sign says !



A little girls Big Wheel !
I wonder what the story is behind that ! ?



I am hoping that stuff was added to the helmet later !





A radiator ! ?



Note the yellow sign on the right.
CAUTION, WATCH FOR FALLING PARTS FROM TREE OF SHAME.



A bent rotor leaves a sad memorial.





People even climbed this tree to add stuff.
Actually you are supposed to sign and date your "Contribution" and give it to the Store's Front Counter so they can display it for future generations to admire !



A whole gas tank !





A LOT of mirrors!





Having Dragon markings does not make you exempt.



Stupid Hurts !



Yes it does.

Started some time in the 80's by a group of Harley riders, it is a makeshift shrine to those bitten by the Dragon.
Found on Deals Gap site.

YouTube video from 2006 which shows a lot less parts !

If you go, please do not add any parts.

Thank You.

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Deals Gap, NC, Tree of Shame @14
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Old 06-05-2014, 05:53 PM   #1563
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From there I walked across the street to see the stuff over there.



Some bikes were leaving and coming back later.
This is looking north from Deals Gap.



Across the street was Tail of the Dragon and killboy.

They had a rather unique gate to put across the driveway.



To the left was this Dragon tail holding a Motorcycle.
I did not notice the road going up the tail when I was there.
Pretty neat sign.

Nor did I notice the stills in the back !



Inside they sell stickers, patches, and other Dragon stuff.
Even the tables had interesting legs on them.



Killboy was also in here.
I got the information I needed to see my pictures on line when I got home.

I wonder how they take all of those pictures on busy days ! ?



Pictures on killboy.
They have all kinds of pictures of interesting vehicles.

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Deals Gap, NC, Tail of the Dragon Store & killboy @14
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Old 06-05-2014, 06:19 PM   #1564
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Last, but not least, is this really cool Metal Dragon Statue.







Made up of all kinds of interesting parts.



My kind of stuff !











And that is the Metal Dragon Statue you could see from across the street.





Looks like I will be submitting a picture to Roadside America !

I am ashamed to say I did not see, nor look, for a plaque as to the creator of this nice statue.
I happen to see a plaque on the Green Tail across the parking lot on my picture, but I did not see that when I was there either !!



I had also given a friend of mine a hard time for not doing the PC shot when he was here.
I did not do one either.
I guess I was too absorbed in the moment.
It looks like it could have been done looking at that last picture.

Sorry Rob



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Old 06-06-2014, 06:49 AM   #1565
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If you are planning a trip to Deals Gap and the Tail of the Dragon here are a few websites with other great riding in this area.

Most are set up as loops so you can start and end up back where you started.



TailoftheDragon.com
I have already referenced.



Moonshiner28.com
This follows Route 28 from Deals Gap, NC through three states winding up in Walhalla, GA.
A 103 mile trip.
I love their History of Hwy 28 Tab!



The Cherohala Skyway
The Eastern ends starts 16.5 miles South of Deals Gap, NC, which is just north of Robbinsville, NC, off of US-129 and goes to Tellico Plains, TN.
50 miles of "A Drive Above The Clouds" as they say.
Their website is very nice with a good map and things to see on your trip.
STBNE likes this road as you have heard him mention.
You can make a loop out of this too.
* Starting in Robbinsville, NC take the Cherohala Skyway West to Tellico Plains, TN.
*Head North on TN-360 to Vonore, TN.
* A short skip on US-411 N.
* Then turn onto TN-72 E back to US-129 S which is about 10 miles north of The Dragon.
* Another 28 miles, which includes the 11 miles of The Dragon and you are back where you started from.
And the rest is Motorcycle History ready for a Ride Report !
124 Miles of Curves



SixGap.com
Set up as a "Figure 8" running through Six Mountain Gaps in North Eastern Georgia.
If you stayed on US-129 S you would reach this about 81 miles from Deals Gaap, NC.
Their "Area Maps" Tab is great for all of these routes I am posting here.
They even have an Elevation Profile of Tail of the Dragon.
I did not realize there was an 800 foot change in elevation on The Dragon!



DevilsTriangleTN.com
A 43 mile loop of Tennessee Mountain Back Roads about 73 Miles North of Deals Gap, TN.
Oliver Springs, TN seems to be the biggest town around. Just West of Knoxville, TN.



TheDiamondbackNC.com
Looks like an interesting group of roads and only a 38 mile loop.
Probably best to do this if you were on the Blue Ridge Parkway to begin with, because that is part of the loop.
Lets start this one in Burnsville, NC.
That is where NC-80 crosses the Blue Ridge Parkway.
That is a bit of a hike from Deals Gap, NC at 146 miles.
If you took the Blue Ridge Parkway starting in Cherokee, NC it would be 178 miles from Deals Gap, NC !



BlueRidgeParkway.org
This is an end to end road of 469 miles from Cherokee, NC in the South to Waynesboro, VA on the Northern end.
Skyline Drive's Southern end starts where the Blue Ridge Parkway ends.
Blue Ridge Parkway is free, but Skyline Drive is a small fee. ($10 for motorcycles)



Just get out and ride any of the backroads in NC, TN, GA, KY, etc., etc.

(NJ not included ! )
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Old 06-06-2014, 09:59 AM   #1566
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Its really great to see NC from your perspective...Deal's Gap and Tail of the Dragon are interesting but IMHO are overrated and overhyped...too many people have come in and basically ruined it...however you just have to be smart and know when the best times are to ride it and it can be quite enjoyable. A rule of thumb is to avoid the place on weekends...although i have ridden though there early on Sunday mornings and had virtually no squid traffic...but later in the day they'll be out en masse I used to live in Robbinsville...NJ so I find it curious that there is a Robbinsville NC...been through there a number of times going to and coming back from Telico plains via the Cherohala Skyway...a fun fun fun road with awesome viewsIf I may indulge...heres a shot from a scenic pullout along the Cherohala...we're over 5600 feet...

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Old 06-06-2014, 06:42 PM   #1567
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So after lunch, and "some" picture taking we head back to Cherokee.

This is the Cheoah Dam right on US-129.



US-219 passed to the left of the dam in this picture.
I tried stopping there but there was no room and too hilly.

This dam is one of the reasons this road is here !
When this dam was built they extended a railroad line to get in and out of here.
The first concrete was laid in March of 1917 and dam construction was finished December 1918.
The powerhouse and such were added after that and April of 1919 they started getting power from it.

Some great information on Graham County website with some great old photographs.

This dam was used in the 1993 movie The Fugitive staring Harrison Ford and Tommy Lee Jones.

The locals are said to call this The Fugitive Dam !

US-219 crosses a bridge just below the dam so you can get some good pictures.
If you take yours while you are not riding !

Some more great scenery on our "longer than I thought" ride back to Cherokee.



Well lookie there !





I just can't get away from this stuff !



US-129 crosses US-19 and we took that East back to Cherokee.

Cheoah is the Cherokee name for Otter.

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Cheoah Dam, Tapoco, NC @14
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Old 06-06-2014, 06:58 PM   #1568
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Back in Cherokee I get another picture of a Muffler Man.



An Indian Chief with no official name as far as I know.

Roadside America information which says he has been here for at least 30 years.



I never noticed that part of his headdress was missing when I was there !



And those look like Cowboy Boots !



Located at Indian Ink Tatoo Studio, which does have a website !



Looks a little embarrassing from this angle !







An old wagon with a casino in the background.



This is one of the other sections of Cherokee, NC I was telling you about earlier.



New Casino buildings here and abandoned and some falling apart buildings all around it.
Mostly motels.



Then on our way to our next stop we go through the new Tourist Section of Cherokee.





Look, a real Indian !



And he probably is too !

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Muffler Man, Indian, Indian Ink Tattoo Studio, Cherokee, NC @14
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Old 06-06-2014, 07:15 PM   #1569
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Our trip to this waterfall was a lot nicer experience than our last one.

This is part of the river as it has come over the falls up the hill and running past the parking lot.



And I mean UP !



180 steps from what I was told !!!
I did not count them !

At the top you walk onto a dirt path.



Which leads to a bridge over the river coming from the falls.



And there she be !



Mingo Falls, Cherokee or Charleston, NC

The top had to be 100 feet above where we were standing.



Such a nice peaceful place.





Some biker chick I found up here !





We stayed there for a while.

Then decided we needed to move on.

Now it was down.
Which was a lot easier than up was !



Mingo Falls on National Park Service.
They say the falls are 120 feet high and are located on the Cherokee Indian Reservation, which is real by the way.

Some information on NC Waterfqalls.

A really nice YouTube Video.

There were no signs in the parking lot, but you can see the stairs easily.
Just follow the sound of falling water !
I will mark the Parking Lot on my map because you can not miss the steps going up that lead directly to the falls.

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Cherokee, NC, Mingo Falls @14
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Old 06-06-2014, 07:18 PM   #1570
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I had also wanted to see this nice Welcome to Cherokee sign on the Northern end of town.





But of course the other side says "Come Back Soon" !



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Cherokee, NC, Cherokee Indian Reservation Welcome Sign @14
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Old 06-06-2014, 07:20 PM   #1571
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Looks like I leaned further than I thought I did this day.





However, I did not scrape any foot pegs.

But we were back safely in Cherokee after 195 Miles and 9 1/2 hours.
Ready for more adventure.
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Old 06-09-2014, 08:29 AM   #1572
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Quote:
Originally Posted by STBNE View Post
Steve you are 100% correct that the Tail of the dragon is not a scenic route...with all the curves and such there really is no time to look even if there was a view...Thats why a road like the Cherohala Skyway is sooooo nice...it offers plenty of views and vista points to stop and take it in yet its curves are fast sweepers and you can putt along at a pretty good pace. The road is very similar to the blue Ridge parkway
For sure.
I wish we had the time for the Cherohala Skyway.
Perhaps another trip sometime !

Quote:
Originally Posted by ErikMotoMan View Post
Quote : " So, anyone in the market for a Well Used, World Famous () 1990 Honda Pacific Coast?"

Don't sell her, you have too many unforgettable memories together. Plus you would have to change your ADV rider name...

Seriously, though, the PC riders club has 4785 members, surely somebody has a mirror for you?

YOU WILL REGRET SELLING HER !
The more I think about it the more I decide I need to get rid of the blessed thing.
I love it for sure as well, but I don't have time or the patience to be looking for parts when I need them, and I will need them with the age of the bike.

Plus with the Trophy working now the poor PC is getting neglected.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ErikMotoMan View Post
Love the pics and the history lessons!
I am glad you are enjoying my pictures and information.
It takes about as much time to dig up the history as it does to do the pictures !
That is one of the reasons it takes me so long to get this done.

And I thank you for reading through my thread.
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Old 06-09-2014, 08:44 AM   #1573
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Quote:
Originally Posted by STBNE View Post
I was at Clingman's Dome last Sept... The road up was shrouded in clouds and it was raining too... Got to the parking lot and it was pea soup fog...didn't bother to hike up to the tower....:-(

Sent from my DROID RAZR HD using Tapatalk
You should go back some time when the weather is good for seeing the great views I have seen pictures of.
Nothing but mountains all around.

Quote:
Originally Posted by docgonzo View Post
Steve, Debbie, fantastic travelog and photographs. No wonder we haven't seen you tagging much around Southern NJ lately. Compared to those areas in Tennessee and North Carolina, South Joisey is pretty tame!



p.s., pretty good lean angles on the new bike through the "Gap"!
Thank you Doc, I appreciate the kind comments.
And South Jersey is A LOT more tame than it was before !

It sure felt like I was leaning pretty good.
And I guess looking at the tires proved that out !

Now I am back to wearing down just the center !

Quote:
Originally Posted by STBNE View Post
Its really great to see NC from your perspective...Deal's Gap and Tail of the Dragon are interesting but IMHO are overrated and overhyped...too many people have come in and basically ruined it...however you just have to be smart and know when the best times are to ride it and it can be quite enjoyable. A rule of thumb is to avoid the place on weekends...although i have ridden though there early on Sunday mornings and had virtually no squid traffic...but later in the day they'll be out en masse I used to live in Robbinsville...NJ so I find it curious that there is a Robbinsville NC...been through there a number of times going to and coming back from Telico plains via the Cherohala Skyway...a fun fun fun road with awesome viewsIf I may indulge...heres a shot from a scenic pullout along the Cherohala...we're over 5600 feet...

It's great to see some of your pictures Ben.

After looking up some of the other Road Offerings in the area there is a lot to choose from.
What Deals Gap has going for it is history and a great place (only place) to stop out in the middle of nowhere attached to a great riding road.
And they cater to Motorcycles.

I just wish they would stop truck traffic from getting on that road and getting stuck and also causing road hazards at every corner they come to.
There has to be a way to stop them.
I certainly do not think the warning sign was sufficient, or BIG enough.
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Old 06-09-2014, 09:59 AM   #1574
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After another damp night we rise to the munching sound of carpenter bees destroying the hotel we are in.



That is the outside porch railing.

This is still better than being in a tent during this weather.

My original plan was to stop and see things in Cherokee on the Deals Gap Loop I had planned out.
Since we stayed in town and those things were nearby we went to them on foot after we arrived on Tuesday.
You remember, the Cherokee Trader sign, Tinkerbell and the Museum of the Cherokee Indian Wood Carving.

Before that occurred I had decided to see that stuff the day after Deals Gap, but since we had already seen those thingss we had a free day.
The weather was too bad to start home, and I had a reservation at a campground for Friday night and not Thursday night.


So, people had been telling us we needed to go to Gatlinburg, TN.

So we decided to try that out.

We head north on US-441 again.
Gatlinburg was not much further from where we had turned off the day before.

On US-441 we stopped at this nice little waterfall along the road that I do not remember seeing the day before !



The water was coming out pretty good after the rain.





This is looking North on US-441.



This was one of those "parking on a hill" situations that baffled me for a little while.
The bike looks like it is sitting straight up.
Well, to me it looks like it is leaning the opposite (WRONG) direction !



The stream next to the road is still the Oconaluftee River that runs through the town of Cherokee, NC.

Someone was down by the riverside getting creative with the rocks.



Further north we see more Smoke and less Mountains again.



I still find it pretty though.



Somewhere along in here we put our rain gear on.

This is one of I believe two tunnels between Cherokee, NC and Gatlinburg, TN.



I found riding through tunnels weird for some reason.
Especially the shorter ones on a curve.
The long ones did not bother me.

The construction crews were not out this day except for one spot, but there were still two lanes at that location.
I am guessing the rain delayed the other road repairs.
The rain was pretty much on and off ALL day.
Not hard, but just annoying !

That makes for a miserable time, but I was trying to enjoy everything I could.
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Old 06-09-2014, 10:53 AM   #1575
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We finally reached Gatlinburg.



I road through town trying to find what was so interesting about the place.
I did see some interesting stuff, to my eye anyway.
It is a neat town with a lot of restaurants, gift and novelty shops, and tourist attractions.

To be honest, it reminded me of Wildwood, New Jersey's boardwalk.
Without the boardwalk of course !

After riding through town we turned around and stopped at an outdoor/camping outfitters to see about a cookstove.

Nice sign.





Their parking lot was also slanted, so I parked in between them and this nice looking restaurant next door.



As you can see we were right on the Southern end of town, so we had ridden back to where we came in at.



We went into Nantahala Outdoor Center and with our rain gear on and carrying our helmets I was getting a little miserable.
Sorry about that, but it is difficult walking around in full riding gear inside a rain suit.
I was getting hot, and they had no shopping carts to put our stuff in.
And they had nothing that we were looking for.
I took my rains suit and jacket off and carried them around so that helped with overheating !

Well, I survived that and we took a walk through town.
We left our helmets on the bike and took off walking.

For as low as I was feeling I must say I took an awful lot of pictures here in Gatlinburg !

I don't know why I was feeling out of it.
Perhaps after riding the Dragon this was not so exciting to me,
or maybe my adrenaline was all used up !


I was not sure how to put this on my map.
I think I will just put a marker at the Southern end of where we started and the Northern end of where we walked to.
Everything you will see is in between those two points.

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Gatlinburg, TN, Southern end of town @14
Gatlinburg, TN, Northern end of our walk through town @14
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