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Old 10-12-2014, 08:08 PM   #1
augiedog OP
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Location: carolina foothills
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3 days 1000 miles in the Carolina, Tenn foothills

This trip came about as most of my trip do. My riding buddy and closest friend convinced his employer that if he didn't get a few days off he was headed for a possible nervous break down. It was a short notice for planning a three day trip (adventure) but that is how most of our ride come about. We have been riding most every weekend now for the last several years . We both own several bikes and ride dualsport and sporttouring rides with the Charlotte ride group as well. As he holds a day job as a machinist , and I am retired I usually do most of the route planning. Having grown up and spending a lot of my younger years in and around the Andrews, Robbinsville and western NC mountians I am very fimiliars with most all the twistie 2 lane blacktop and gravel fire service roads throught the Apalachin mountians. I have also spent a lot of time in Tennessee riding over the last 20 years. Our plan was simple. We will ride the crooked, longist, two lane route we can find due west from Charlotte NC. Toward Memphis Tenn. After the initial plan was set we decided to invite our other riding buddy Opa and he redily agreed to go. Opa, as myself is a retired truck driver and has spent most of his later years in and around the western NC , SC mountians. In other words, they ain't many places one of us ain't been. After a short conversation it was agreed that Flasher, and I Augiedog, would leave Gastonia at 8:00 , meet Opa at the Spinnex on rt 11 and rt 176 at 9:00. He would plan a route and lead us to Tellico Plains and There I would take over and lead as far west as we could go and get back by late Sunday evening.Some people still have work, (Flasher) and make sure there is going to be money in the social security fund for us retires to be able to take these trips in our retirement years. Thanks to all of you for your continued support and contributions.
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Old 10-12-2014, 08:22 PM   #2
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Love to see your route and some pics. You're just down the street. I live near New Prospect.
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Old 10-13-2014, 03:37 AM   #3
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introductions

I,ll start with myself. I'm a 66 year old retired truck driver who lives alone with nothin better to do than ride a motorcycle all over the US and Canada.I was born in the Andrews, Robbinsville area and now spend most of my time ridin all along the blue ridge parkway and southern apalachan mountians. I started riding in my teens and was heavly involved in the iron butt rally scene for years. i spent a lot of time on Yamahas and rode to alaska 3 times on an FZ-1 from NC. I spent 43 days this spring on a 2007 KLR 650 riding over 9000 miles doing the TAT trail and back home on rural roads. I also made a 8000 mile trip to the Grand Canyon, Colorado, Utah and Montana on an ultra Classic Limited with my Girlfriend. I currently own and ride two bikes, a 2007 KLR and a 2014 Super Tennere. This is a photo of me with my previous KLR which Flasher now owns. Opa is also a retired trucker who spends about as mush time on a bike as myself. He was heavly involved in the motocross scene where he and his 2 sons raced in the late 80's and 90's. He did a lot of photography work and was involved with publishing a motocross magazine. He currently owns and rides a BMW 650 Thumper, (which he also uses as a milk delivery vehicle) in his spare time. He is the one in the high-vize green riding jacket. Flasher is the other character in the previous photo. He is a machinist and avid fisherman and hunter. He spends a lot of his free time fishing and hunting in the North Carolina mountians and Outer Banks. He is my closest friend and ridin buddy as he is also single and will ride on a moments notice. We have spent a lot of time riding in the last several years. He currently owns a Suziki Murader and a 2003 KLR 650. We do a lot of dualsport riding together.
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Old 10-13-2014, 08:55 PM   #4
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day 1

After looking at the weather thursday it became pretty aparant we were going to have to ride thru a cold front with some rain associated with it that was moving north east at a good clip that was expected to cross the mountians early friday. After a brief conversation we agreed we shouldn't have to spend much time before we were west of the bad weather. Flasher and I met at our favorite breakfast reaturant at 7:00 am as planned.It would be about an hour and fifteen minute ride to hook up with our guide Opa on rt 11 in upstate SC. After a quick breakfast we left Gastonia at 7:45 to meet Opa at 9:00. (damn, I forget the breakfast food photo).We had the usual Grits, Gravy Buscits and I had sausage, Flasher had Bacon. After a short jaunt down I-85 we picked up rt 11. Traffic was lite, the skies were cool and grey and we could see the see the dark clouds building over the mountians toward the west. We pulled up right on time at the spinex where Opa was waiting with his camera in hand to document or arrival. He's got one of those cameras that cost as much as his motorcycle with a lens about 2 foot long. (he gets in to his photography) check out ( Opas rides) also in the day trippin threads. Some of the best Carolina mountian pictures I have seen. After Flasher and I gassed up Opa laid out his planned route and assured us we weren't going to have to ride thru the rain till we got well over into the mountians and since we were heading west and the rain was moving east we wouldn't be on wet roads for long before we would be behind the weather. He recently got this fancy new phone and now he thinks he is a weather man. Well, it took all of about 15 minutes before we hit the rain. After riding about 10 miles in a slow drizzle he stopped at a stop sign and assured us we were about to run out of the rain. After about another 10 miles he decided while stopping in a car wash we might ought to put on our rain gear. Note: raingear only works if you are wearing it!! Flasher had waterproofed his boots the nite before and found out he had done an excellent job 3 hours later when we stopped as both of them we still full of the rain that ran down his pant legs before he put on his rain gear. ( He had a squishing sound ever step he took). We wound around some remote narrow back roads in a frog strangler on roads covered with wet leaves coming out on rt 64 in Roseman. From there we headed west, still raining like hell where Opa decided we would make our first fuel stop. During the fuel stop we decided Opa needed to spend a little more time honing his weatherman skills. The rain began to ease up and the sky was lookin better to the west. We picked up rt 28 in Highlands, headed north-west over Telico and Bald mountian on Wynaha road toward Fontana Lake. We rode thru several more lite showers and several sections had a good bit of gravel washed out into the road. We made it to rt 74 , grabbed rt 129 and stopped at Mickey Dees in Robinsville for a late lunch under cool, cloudy. but dry roads. Things were lookin up.
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Old 10-14-2014, 01:04 AM   #5
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Old 10-14-2014, 02:54 AM   #6
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Great start! Now keep it coming.

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Old 10-14-2014, 06:44 AM   #7
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Couple of shots from the narrative to date. As far as my weather (whether?) prognosticatin' - I bat around .500, I could prolly get a job doing it .

The proper place to have suited up for rain..........


Nantahala Lake - it started back raining as soon as we left the pullout....





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Old 10-14-2014, 10:38 AM   #8
augiedog OP
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trip pictures

Opa feel free to add pictures as you feel free. I know you took a lot more than I. I will try to post up more on the ride this evening. Thanks for adding any pictures you would like. It is usually best to put the rain gear on before you get into the rain.
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Old 10-14-2014, 12:22 PM   #9
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day 1 continued

[IMG]After one of Ronalds world famous lunches we headed out on rt 129 to rt 143 and up and over the Cheriola Skyway. We began seeing wet roads and slippery leaves almost imediately after turning into 143. Lookin ahead it was clear we were going have to ride thru some fog or low cloud cover as we got up around 3500 feet. The higher we climbed the colder, really colder and foggy it became. By the time we got to the crest of the mountian, about 5000 ft it was in the 40's and foggy as hell. We eased along an as we decended the west side it began to clear up and get warmer. We stopped at an overlook at about 3500 feet and we could see blue sky to the west. As we were takin some pictures we herd a bunch of harleys coming up from Telico Plains. After about 15 minutes they pulled in at the overlook. It was a mixed crowd of male and female riders from Iowa. The had on the usual harley gear, vests and leather chaps. One of the ladies asked if I mind takin a group picture of them. I did and they asked about the weather going east, up and over the mountian. When I told them how cold and foggy it was the acted like the didn't belive me. They said they had motel reservations in Maggie Valley that nite and hoped to be there before dark. As it was almost 4:00 I told them I doubted they would be able to make it before dark riding the Blue Ridge Parkway from Cherokee as they had planned with the fog and rain they were going to be ridin into.[/IMG] [IMG]They asked if ther was a faster way and I gave them directions to rt 74 east thru Waynesville and Maggie Valley. Several of them were in short sleeve shirts with no rain gear or even a lite jacket. I was probally a rough trip. It don't take many rides in the Blue Ridge Mountians to learn you never go without rain gear and a warm jacket. It don't take much evelation change to cause a big drop in tempature here. Especially in the early spring and fall. 60 degree days at 3000 and below usually mean 40's above 5000 feet, and a lot of the mountian gaps on the Skyway and the parkway are over 5000 and some are around 6000 feet. Also you need to understand mountians that high make their own weather and it can change in an instant. There are not many days it don't rain somewhere along the parkway.[/IMG]
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Old 10-14-2014, 12:58 PM   #10
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Quote:
It is usually best to put the rain gear on before you get into the rain.
Now you tell me.........
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Old 10-14-2014, 01:03 PM   #11
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Some view from the overlook on 143.









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Old 10-15-2014, 05:32 PM   #12
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Old 10-15-2014, 06:09 PM   #13
augiedog OP
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day 1 late afternoon

We left the r143 overlook and rode on into Telico Plains. It warmed up a lot as we went down. After gassin up we decided to ride till just before dark and find a room then. We rode rt 39 to rt 30 and headed west. About 50 miles west we got a room for the nite in Dunlap. We had to go south of rt 30 to get a room. Found a nice motel with a good resturant next door. I had stayed there with Trypod Al our first nite on the TAT trail back in May. Motel gives you a free meal ticket for breakfast at the resturant with your room. We had a nice 3 bed room with breakfast included. They let us park under the canopy at the motel. Tomorrow we will run up rt 8 north west to rt 30. Check Opa out , he's a happy dude now since we are west of the bad weather.
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Old 10-15-2014, 06:34 PM   #14
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Love the Report so far...

...hoping this is my life in a few short years...
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Old 10-15-2014, 06:46 PM   #15
The Opa
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Quote:
Check Opa out , he's a happy dude now since we are west of the bad weather.
Ya, bet I'm the only one

Blue sky & Augie



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