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Old 04-22-2012, 11:03 AM   #16
mbabc
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Great stuff!
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Old 04-22-2012, 11:15 AM   #17
ghostdncr
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Drowsy Dave View Post
Hey ghostdncr...check this out. See anything familiar?
Been away for a few days, Dave. Love the report! Since I don't recognize the house or the guy in yellow and I'm pretty certain that's your KLR, my attention is drawn to that red Ninja-looking bike in the background. Could it be?...
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Old 04-22-2012, 05:25 PM   #18
CDillard
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Excellent!

Awesome pics and report DD

If any of your other "unworthy rides" were this good then we have been missing out!

Ride on brother
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Old 04-22-2012, 05:34 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Drowsy Dave View Post
I'll search for a "how to" for bypassing the switch and may be doing some mods instead of sightseeing tomorrow. We'll see...
10 miles South of DC if you need a garage and tools.
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Old 04-22-2012, 06:15 PM   #20
Drowsy Dave OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ghostdncr View Post
Been away for a few days, Dave. Love the report! Since I don't recognize the house or the guy in yellow and I'm pretty certain that's your KLR, my attention is drawn to that red Ninja-looking bike in the background. Could it be?...

Thanks for the kind words guys. Just waiting for the weather to improve in the DC area before continuing.


gohstdncr...yea, thats your bike and it's previous owner. Course in that pic she was fully dressed. The pic was taken about 2 years ago at the Loveless Cafe at the northern terminus of the Natchez Trace Pky. Brian is a good egg and he really loved that bike. Hope you're enjoying it too.
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Old 04-23-2012, 05:26 PM   #21
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Well, the weather still sucks. Its snowing to the west of me and its windy, rainy and cold here. And the really fun part is I'm in summer gear. But, I was tired of being cooped up in the hotel so I decided to go ahead and ride into DC. I'm staying in Manassas which is about 20 miles to the west of DC so it only took about 30 minutes to get into town. They had most of the Mall fenced off and are digging everything up. One of the locals thought they were trying to improve drainage or something.







I went to the Air and Space Museum to see what was new. It's been about 20 years since I was last here. They had all of the displays I remembered as well as a few I hadn't seen...

Shace Ship One




X-45




A Predator Drone




The Gossamer Albatross


The Voyager aircraft...well, some of it anyway.


Left town around 3:30 to try and beat rush hour traffic and it started raining which forced me to put the gps away since its not waterproof. Then I took a wrong turn and got lost. Wet, shivering, lost in DC traffic with a fogged up faceshield.

It was fun.

Finally found my way out of town and back to the hotel where I now have all of my gear hanging all over the room drying out.

Tomorrow I'll ride to the Shenandoah Valley, point the bike south and hope for better weather.

Drowsy Dave screwed with this post 04-23-2012 at 05:35 PM
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Old 04-23-2012, 05:50 PM   #22
129drifter
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I am in and following this one
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Old 04-24-2012, 06:55 PM   #23
ghostdncr
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I hope you're having better luck with the weather this evening, Dave. It started raining here just before I left work at 4:30 and gave me an opportunity to try the Ninja on wet roads. The rain never developed into a full-blown downpour, but what we did have left the impression that the bike's rain manners are gonna suit me just fine. Of course, good rain gear makes a lot of difference, too.
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Old 04-26-2012, 08:27 AM   #24
Drowsy Dave OP
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So the weather finally cleared here in DC and although it was still really cold I moved on to ride Skyline Dr.

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5 minutes after this pic I pulled up to the toll booth and the ranger stuck her head out and said, " You can go the first five miles and then you'll have to turn around. It's closed due to snow." So I jumped on 340 and headed down to Elkton which is the next entrance to Skyline. When I rolled into Elkton I could still see plenty of snow up there. I stopped in a McDonalds and downed a few cups of coffee to warm up and decided to continue on 340 to Waynesboro where I hoped it would be a bit warmer, and pick up the BRP.

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Ended the day north of Roanoke in a private campground in the Jefferson Natl Forrest. I was pretty tapped out by this point. I had been cold all day and just threw the tent up and crawled into my sleeping bag to try and warm up. It was a rough night. My air mattress wouldn't hold air so I ended up on the ground and my summer sleeping bag was no match for the below freezing temps.

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Maybry Mill


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Somewhere near the NC state line the parkway was closed and I detoured off. The weather was starting to look threatening so I booked it down to Boone NC and grabbed a hotel room. First thing I did was turn the room heat on high and then took a loooong hot hot hot shower. It's storming today so I'm going to just sit tight. It's supposed to be warmer tomorrow and should be a good day.

More later.
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Old 04-26-2012, 10:24 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Drowsy Dave View Post

Had a bit of a scare tonight though. Went out to grab a bite and while eating a storm blew in. Lightning flashes gusting winds and all that. Ran out and jumped on the bike to head back to the hotel and it wouldn't start. Hit the starter and nothing. Wouldn't even try to turn over.
I have a 2007 KLR. Sometimes I have the same problem. I've found pushing the starter button from different angles will cause it to start.

Weird, but it works.


.
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Old 04-27-2012, 06:54 PM   #26
Drowsy Dave OP
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Left Boone pretty early this morning and everything was still wet and misty. For most of the morning I played hide and seek with the sun and all of the views, while still nice, had limited visability.

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Lincove Viaduct
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Made a brief side trip to Little Switzerland to check out the hotel my folks spent their honeymoon in 58 years ago.

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Made to the Mt. Mitchchell area and decided not to ride over to the Mountian since the cloud deck was right over my head. I figured why bother, I wouldn't be able to see anything anyway.

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As I moved further south the visability improved.

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If I remember right, this is called Mirror Face Mt. or something. Interesting what ever its named.

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Here's something you've never seen before.

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The end of the BRP at Cherokee NC. After all that I expected a better sign.

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On the way to Clingmans Dome.

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At the top of Clingmans Dome.

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New Found gap.

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This is what awaits me tomorrow. When I was a kid I spent alot of time in the Smokies. I've hiked to the top of the Chimney Tops many times over the years but a couple of years ago I came to the sudden realization that I was too out of shape to make the hike. It hit me hard at the time. Just the idea that things that I loved to do were now a thing of the past caused me to start paying more attention to my health and make some much needed changes. So, tomorrow I'm going to make the hike to the top. And hope I don't have a stroke.

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Old 04-28-2012, 02:30 PM   #27
Robert Ford
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Old 04-28-2012, 09:03 PM   #28
Drowsy Dave OP
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So I slept in this morning and then went and ate a big breakfast. Stopped and took the official photo for posterity.

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Last time I was here my wife broke her finger climbing these rocks. Notice the guy at the top.

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When I was a kid we used to jump off this bridge into the pool below. It was neat swimming around with the brook trout.

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The swimming hole. Its around 12 feet deep depending on where you land.

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There are 3 or 4 bridges on the lower part of the trail. The first half mile is a nice pleasant hike.

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Here's where it starts to get steep and rocky.

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No pics until the top. I was too busy trying to breathe.

The "Chimney Top".

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After climbing the rocks.

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It was actually harder climbing down the rocks than climbing up. Partly because there are long drops on both sides and partly because I'm not a kid anymore.

On the way back down.

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The peak through the trees.

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Back at the bottom...Aaahhhh.

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So I thought about riding "The Dragon" and Cherohala tomorrow but after riding the entire BRP I just can't seem to get excited about it. We'll see.
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Old 04-29-2012, 05:40 PM   #29
Drowsy Dave OP
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Well, I woke up this morning to the sounds of vast herds of Harleys and suddenly had no desire to get in the middle of the craziness which you typically see on the Dragon on weekends. So I decided to head for home. I'm close enough that I can get back here with little effort when the mood strikes.

It's been a good trip. One that I'll always remember. There's something about traveling alone on a motorcycle that has always appealed to me. Puts me in mind of the lone cowboy traveling the wilderness. Minus the paved roads, hotels with wifi and fast food joints of course. Anyhow, I met some interesting guys while out. At last count 7 guys approached me to talk bikes. The last one today after I got back to Nashville. He was a new KLR owner and he chased me down to introduce himself.

Mileage for the trip = 2,037 miles which is more than I expected when I loosely planned the trip.

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Things I learned:

I packed too much stuff. If you really need it you can find it on the road.

The camp chair was used exactly once. Every campsite had a picnic table.

Don't buy the Walmart inflatable mattress. It wouldn't hold air after the first night.

If you're doing the BRP in April, plan for the possibility of cold weather.

Although camping is still kind of adventurous, I've gotten old enough to prefer a cheap motel to sleeping on the ground.

Well, there you go folks. Time to get back to normal life. Thanks for coming along.

Cheers.
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Old 04-29-2012, 06:01 PM   #30
TroyJ650
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Welcome back, thanks for the play-by-play.
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