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Old 07-28-2011, 08:42 PM   #166
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Like most good sized cities, Chattanooga just isn't much fun (well, the Aquarium is nice).

OK, one more map from Cisco to Tellico Plains. 411 is the most direct route and the most boring. A little sidetrack through the Ocoee/Reliance areas is much nicer and not much in added miles.

http://maps.google.com/maps?saddr=Ci...=11&via=1&z=11
I plan on taking 411 to 64 to 68. Someone posted that 30 is currently trashed due to road construction/resurfacing.
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Old 08-02-2011, 06:34 AM   #167
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I'm back from Tellico Plains, time to post a report and some pics. I decided to take the route suggested by GSBS in this thread: http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=710997

I got an early start to try to beat the heat and was greeted by this view of the sky as I was heading through Huntsville:



I took I-565/72 through Huntsville to Scottsboro, crossed the Tennessee River on 35, then 40/117 east to Mentone. I wanted to stop and check out the waterfalls near Mentone so I stopped to check my map. Unfortunately I suffer from a bad case of CRS. I had forgotten to bring my Alabama or Tennessee maps. Oh well, I did have TWO North Georgia maps

So I continued on 117 which becomes 48 in Ga, then left on 157 and right on Dougherty Gap Rd. This Rd had a nice section with some tight curves and switchbacks.



Then on to Hog Jowl Rd. This road was not what I expected. With a name like Hog Jowl, I expected a small, poorly paved road with some occasional rundown shacks and single-wides, and some banjo music in the background. It was actually just a nice country road with some pretty nice houses on it and even some spandex wearing bicyclists. It was a pleasant ride with only light traffic and most importantly some curves.

I snapped a couple of pics but don't remember if they were on Dougherty Gap or Hog Jowl Rd.



.



Then it was a right on 193, left on Shinbone Ridge. Then I ended up in Lafayette and got off the track and wandered around town until I found my way on to 136 East. I did stop for gas. The Aprilia only has a 2.4 gallon tank but it does get 75 MPG.
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Old 08-02-2011, 08:13 AM   #168
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Headed east on 136 I decided to deviate from the route posted by GSBS. Instead of following 136 to 201, I took 151 north to Houston Valley Road (it's called something else on the western end but I can't remember the name). This is a fun to ride road with some tight curves as it crosses a small mountain ridge just off of 151, then is reasonably curvy and hilly past that. Then a left onto Mt Vernon Rd and north to 201. 201 passes through the booming town of Tunnel Hill, Ga. I was getting hungry since I had skipped breakfast so I stopped at the town park and ate the PB & J I had brought along. It was starting to get hot so the shaded picnic table was perfect.



There was also a clean restroom with running water. Since it was getting hot, I decided to get out my portable air conditioner:



I soaked it in the sink for a few minutes and put it on. As soon as I started riding it cooled off real nicely.

Then I followed 201 to 2 east to 411 north. I rode through a brief shower on 411 but didn't bother with a rainsuit. I figured it was a great opportunity to recharge then vest.

Then it was east on 64. I stopped at another small park by a dam on the Ocoee river. I called Debbi, who was driving up from Marietta. I thought we might meet in Copperhill for lunch but I was way ahead of her and she had already eaten lunch. Since I was ahead of her, I had time to go exploring and do some extra riding. I decided to ride up 30 from 64 to reliance and see if it was in as bad of shape as reported. It actually wasn't too bad. Although there were still signs warning of construction and grooved pavement, It appeared that the road had been repaved and the construction was complete. There was still some left over pea sized black gravel so peg scratching would probably not be a good idea. Despite taking it easy due to the gravel, I still came up behind some cages pretty quickly and ended up pulling over and waiting a bit so I could at least have a little fun on the curves

Here's an old historic church in Reliance:



crossing the Hiawassee river on 315



315 was in great shape and had much less traffic than 30 so I was able to enjoy the curves, only getting stuck behind a cage for a brief while.

It's to bad CMR is no longer in business. It looked like a nice place and I never had the chance to stay there.

It's sad seeing a nice place like this going unused.



I followed 315 to 39 towards Tellico Plains. It looks like another motorcycle place starting up along 39.



Anyone want to guess what brand of motorcycle rider they are trying to attract?



I was half expecting someone to come tell me to move my scooter before I ruined the place's image

They were not exactly doing a booming business.



They had some nice cabins but no shade for tent camping.



It does look like they have a nice trail running up the hillside although I doubt too many people will be riding their Harleys up it.

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Old 08-02-2011, 10:06 AM   #169
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I heade into Tellico Plains and checked into the cabin I had reserved for 2 nights. I forgot to take any pics of the cabin but it was Mountainview cabins and their website is: http://www.tellicologcabins.com/cabins.htm

We were pretty happy with the cabin. It had a king size bed and kitchenette for $70 per night. After checking in I headed out to check out the other motorcycle campground near tellico plains. It's just south of town on 68.



Here's a pic lookng toward 68 from the tent campsites on the hill.



Like the other campsite earlier, not much shade although there was on large tree so at least one camper would have shade. I'm not sure I'd want to camp in either place in July or August, it's just too hot. I'd look for someplace with a little more elevation. There was one truck parked by a cabin, otherwise the place was deserted.

Then it was back into town. I went to the visitor center and managed to get a Tennessee map to replace the one I forgot. Then Debbi showed up and we headed back to the cabin.

A little later we headed over to Tellico Motorcycle Outfitters. I have stopped there many times but never managed to meet the Minimike, the owner. He was actually there this time. We talked a bit and got some info on stuff to see and places to eat. We decided to go to a barbeque place he recomended just south of town on 68. They were closed. Their hours were 11-5. They closed just in time to miss the dinner traffic, doesn't make sense to me. So we tried a place that Minimike said was clean, had an extensive menu but the food pretty average. We were hungry and it was convenient so we went in.



It looked real big and impressive on the outside but was pretty small inside. The restaurant only occupied a small portion of the building. There was a large group of around 20 at one table so we figured we might have to wait a bit. We didn't think we would have to wait nearly an hour for our food. Then, when we finally got it, we were real hungry, but the food wasn't very good. It didn't taste bad, it just didn't have much flavor. Maybe they hired a cook away from a hospital or nursing home where they tend to have bland food.

So, if you're in Tellico Plains looking for some good food, look someplace else besides the Nut- N - Fancy restaurant.

We did manage to get some good Ice cream for desert by going up to the Tellico Beach drive in just up 165 along the river. This seems to be the hot spot in town as all the locals come up for burgers, dogs, ice cream and a swim in the river. We both had Hot Fudge Sundaes and they were goooooood. Forgot my camera so no pics.
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Old 08-02-2011, 12:56 PM   #170
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The next morning I was up before Debbi, as usual, so I headed out for a little ride. I started up rafter road and saw this just a few hundred yards up the road:



Both KLRs had ADV stickers around but no riders in sight. I guess Debbi is not the only one who likes to sleep in late

I hate to waste daylight when there are so many great roads and so little time. Especially when there are roads like this so close:



Some of the local wildlife:



Just relaxing in the shade.



Got antlers?




Now that there's some horns.



I continued down this narrow little road up over a mountain. I recognized this road as the road I saw some horse drawn covered wagons on many years ago. No wagons this time but just like last time I had no idea where I was when I came to an intersection and had to make a decision. Luckily I turned the right way and found myself at the Skyway. A Gold Wing came whizzing by so I gave chase. Most touring and cruiser riders tend to ride pretty slow on twisty mountain roads but not this guy. He knew how to twist the throttle and used most of his limited clearance in the curves. I snapped a few pics of him while riding.

Here he has his feet on the highway pegs, almost dragging his heels.



He would pull away on the straights but I could easily reel him in on the curves.



Then it was back to the cabin where Debbi was almost ready. So I went back to where I saw the dual sports with ADV stickers. A couple of the riders where out so I talked to one of them. He tried to register on the forum but for some reason his registration has been in limbo so he's been lurking but unable to post. Not sure what the problem is. I would have recomended some of the local roads but he had a maphighlighted by Minimike pretty much showing the roads I would have recommended. Don't remember any names but if you happen to catch this report
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Old 08-02-2011, 02:12 PM   #171
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I picked up Debbi and we headed off to our first stop of the ride.



In case you don't recognize the spot, here's a pic where you can see the falls.



As much as I like Bald River falls, I like the beautiful ride up river road even better. Unfortunately there was a lot of slow moving traffic going to the falls today. When we stopped at the falls we discovered that my CRS was still acting up and I had forgot to bring the small cooler of water I had packed and put back into the fridge so it would stay cold

We decided to go back and get it. We had to go back down River Road anyway so it wouldn't be too far out of the way. Since it was already nearly 11 and we were headed back to town anyway, why not just stop and get lunch? Sound simple. So we decided on the Creamery, just across the street from Tellico Motorcycle Outfitters. Great plan. According to the sign they opened at 1100. Except it was 11:15 and no sign of life in the building. So, time for plan B. We decided on the barbeque Minimike had recomended, they opened at 1100..........we hoped. When we got there the parking lot was empty but they were open.



So we ate lunch there. The food was rather pricey and pretty average. Better than last night but not good enough that we're likely to go back again.

Now it was time to ride. A quick stop at the cabin to get the water I had forgotten and it was time to ride the Skyway. It was getting pretty hot so we were looking for some elevation to cool of. The skyway a pretty ride with lts of easy curves. It also has a fairly steep grade. This is not something I normally notice very much but when you are 2 up on a 250cc scooter, it's quite noticeable. I think we bogged down to around 35 on a couple of the steepest grades. But we did make our way up and didn't have any traffic come up behind us. We stopped for a break just past the TN/NC line.



We might have been slow but we beat these sportbikes up here



Actually, we made pretty good time. The Aprilia handles the curves just fine.

Downhill of course, lack of power was not an issue

When we got to the end of the skyway, it was too early to turn around and go back so we decided to ride to Deals Gap.
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Old 08-02-2011, 07:20 PM   #172
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Here's a view of Little River Falls.

KLAviator,

Looks like there was more water than when I went by there last week.

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Old 08-02-2011, 08:06 PM   #173
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KLAviator,

Looks like there was more water than when I went by there last week.

Liberia
Yeah, that was back in February. It seems that the summer heat has all the river levels in the area pretty low. I'm going to try to get back by that area in the near future and see what it looks like with leaves on the trees.
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Old 08-02-2011, 08:40 PM   #174
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From the end of the skyway we headed through the Joyce Kilmer Forest towards 129. The pavement going through Joyce Kilmer is pretty rough. It's not an issue on a dual sport but quite noticeable when 2 up on a scooter. As we approached 129 I got the "are we there yet?" from Debbi. I figured she was ready to get off the bike so I used that as an excuse to crank it up and have some fun on the high speed sweepers as 129 ran along the cheoah river. There was a sport bike following us but he made no attempt to pass. Just past the fugitive dam I pulled over and let him by. If not for his superior power going up the hill I think we could have stayed with him but he pulled away on the straights and pulled into the Deals Gap resort just ahead of us.

I was surprised to see a bunch of small scooters in the parking lot and I parked among them.



They were all cheap chinese scooters and none of them had tags.



They were all pretty beat up and had missing & broken body work. I think most of them were 50cc but one looked too big for a 50.



I figured it must be a bunch of kids but it turned out to be a bunch of older guys. I'm sure they were having a blast and it just goes to show that you don't need a real expensive bike to have fun.
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Old 08-03-2011, 12:05 PM   #175
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We hung out at Deals Gap for a while. Debbi asked me "aren't you going to ride the dragon?" I replied, "I never ride the Dragon, I only ride Deals Gap" I have never gotten into the names the local T shirt vendors have been giving to local roads to try to build up the hype and attract more tourists. US 129 at Deals Gap was just referred to as Deals Gap when I started riding it over 20 years ago and I'm not buying into the "dragon" hype. I picked up some maps and brochures at the Skyway visitor center the day before and there was one I found amusing. It was a brochure put out by Tail of the Dragon.com. Here is what it says about Deals Gap:
"Tail of the Dragon at Deals Gap is America's favorite two-lane tourist road. There's no other road even close to matching the challenge of 318 curves in 11 miles of desolate Smoky Mountain asphalt."

I'm sorry but this is pure hype. Those of you who have really explored the area know that there are many roads in the area with much tighter and more challenging curves. Furthermore with all the heavy, slow moving tourist traffic and numerous LEOs patrolling that 11 mile stretch, I would hardly call it "desolate"

I also discovered more pet names for local roads in the brochure. First there is "Moonshiner 28" which a competing t- shirt vendor has named "Hellbender 28"

Then there is the "snake" which the brochure says is now known as the "striped snake".

It says Wayah road is known to the locals as "warrior Road" I've never heard that but it will surely confuse people since there is a place selling t-shirts calling it "thunder road"

It calls NC209 "the rattler", I've seen t-shirts calling it "shiners run"

There's a couple of routes in N GA called "Six Gap" and "The guantlet" I've been riding N. Ga for over 20 years and have never heard of those.

I think tourists pick up these brochures, assume that people use those names so they use them. After a while the names become common. I'm not sure what will happen with the roads that have multiple names.

Anyway, to answer Debbi's original question. I did not ride through Deals Gap. With all the traffic and the LEOs that were most likely there, it would have been a slow, boring ride.

So we headed back the way we came. I didn't take any pictures. We did stop along the Skyway at the same place we stopped on the way up. There were three couples from Clayton, GA on Harleys also taking a break there. We talked to them for a while. Like most of the Harley riders I have talked to over the years, they were nice folks.

Then we returned to Tellico Plains.

We were determined to have at least one good meal on this trip so we decided to try the Outpost Pavilion. It was recomended by the lady who owned the cabins and she said her husband would be playing some live music there.



It was an interesting place. It's kind of a food court. There are several different vendors who share a common seating area. There was a seafood place out front, a pizza place out back, and inside was a ribs, burge & other stuff place as well as a bar with a selection of beer & drinks.

I choose the seafood place and had Blackened grouper with yellow rice & veggies. It was very good. Debbi decided on a half rack of ribs.



As you can see, the ribs were tiny...........

Actually they were great. Debbi had her fill, I ate some and we still had plenty left over. She took them home where my son ate them the next day.

We finally ate someplace that We both highly recommend. If you like ribs, don't get a full rack unles you are really hungry!

Afterwards it was back to the Tellico Beach drive in to satisfy my addiction to ice cream. This time we wore our swim suits and jumped in the river. Again, I forgot my camera so no pics.
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Old 08-03-2011, 01:31 PM   #176
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On Monday morning it was time to head back to Huntsville since I had to go to work that evening. I wanted to get on the road before 9:00 and I did. About 6 miles down the road I realized I had forgot my little cooler with my cold water and Gatoraid have I mentioned I have CRS disease? So I turned around and got it. This time I got on the road exactly at 9:00. My planned route was basically the one recommended by Raptorman on another thread and would take me well north of Chattanooga through Tennessee. I started on 39 west towards Athens. I missed a turn to stay on 39 and ended up on 310 west. Both were a nice ride untill I got to Etowah and picked up 30 to Athens. 30 had construction and traffic but there were no delays. I stopped at a park outside Athens and decided it was getting hot enough to put on myy cooling vest. I had soaked it that morning and put it in a plastic bag. it sure felt good. Then I followed 30 west through a number of towns and small cities. It was a pretty nice road but seemed mostly built up and had a fair amount of traffic.
One thing I have noticed while riding rural roads in the south is that there are still a fair number of drive-in theaters in operation.



Much of the road was four lanes. I took this pic because of the guy riding a horse in the median.




I took a short break along a lake in Dayton.



I followed 30 to127 south. There were some nice curves on 30 as it descended into the valley just before 127.

127 was a two lane road in a valley with lots of traffic. It also had another interesting feature, one yard sale after another. In many places there were groups of yard sales all in one place and even had porta-potties for the customers.

I only took one pics of one but could have taken dozens.



I'm used to seeing yard sale on weekends but this was monday. Based on what I saw, yards sales may just be the largest industry and source of employment in this area.

I do wonder where they get the stuff to sell. Sometime I'll have to stop to look at it. I guess I someone was unemployed they could go to a big city, hit the yard sales on Saturday morning in the nicer nieghborhoods, and then try to resell it to the tourists during the week for a profit. Anyone out there know the story behind these yard sales?

I took 127 south to Dunlap where I got gas. Still getting a consistant 75 MPG

Then it was 8 west/ 111 north to Cagle. Here's 8 climbing out of the valley:




399 west or south? Whatever, there were plenty of tar snakes on the road.



I was supposed to take 56 south but ended up continueing west to 50 south. 50 had some nice sweepers as it descended into the valley. Then it was a pretty boring ride on 64 to Winchester where I stopped for lunch.
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Old 08-03-2011, 02:56 PM   #177
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After Winchester I took 16 south which becomes 79 as it crosses into Alabama. It has a few curves climbing up the mountain then is pretty straight after that. I saw lots of signs for "Walls of Jericho" and hiking trails.

Then I went right on 146. 146 descended off of the mountian and it felt like riding into a blast furnace. My Cooling vest was still working but the air was so hot I could feel it as I breathed it in.

Then it was left on 65. 65 is a great country road with lots of nice curves and is shaded in many spots. In Tennessee they seemed to always clear the trees away from the road so you are always riding in the sun. This was a nice change and one of the best parts of the ride.

Then it was 72 - I 565 back to the Rocket City. I know I am close to my apartment when I see Huntsville's most distinctive landmark, the giant Saturn 5, as well as smaller rockets and the space shuttle.

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Old 08-11-2011, 05:56 AM   #178
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I've got a free weekend to ride this coming weekend since the spousal unit will be out of town. I've been planning this weekend's ride for a while and after many changes, I finally have a plan..................sort of.

I'm going to leave Huntsville whenever I wake up Saturday morning and head east. My plan is to be in Ellijay Ga at 5:30 for the NW GA ADV dinner and then head home to Marietta after that. That leaves me plenty of time to explore between Huntsville and Ellijay. My rough plan is to go to Cloudmont ski area (who would have thunk there is a ski area in Alabama), then ride to Mentone and head south through Little River Canyon. After that I'll find my way to Chatsworth and ride 2/52 over to Ellijay.

Any suggestions on stuff to see or more importantly, twisty roads along the way would be appreciated. Or if anyone is heading that way on Saturday and wants to tag along part or all the way, let me know.

As usual, I'll take lots of pics and hope some of them come out OK so I can post them.
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Old 08-12-2011, 09:05 AM   #179
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127 Yard Sale, Worlds Longest Yard Sale

The first week of August is when this monstrosity happens. It goes from the beginning to the end of 127, over 700 miles. For those who like to yard sale, it is nice, for those of us who don't, it's a PITA.
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Old 08-16-2011, 10:30 AM   #180
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The first week of August is when this monstrosity happens. It goes from the beginning to the end of 127, over 700 miles. For those who like to yard sale, it is nice, for those of us who don't, it's a PITA.
Thanks for the info. I did see a sign or to for the 127 yard sale but didn't really pay attention.
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