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Old 06-15-2013, 07:58 PM   #16
ddavidv
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I'm along for this one. Always fun to see what foreigners think about our little slice of the planet.
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Old 06-15-2013, 08:12 PM   #17
Ricky Chuck
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ddavidv View Post
I'm along for this one. Always fun to see what foreigners think about our little slice of the planet.
Isn't "foreigner" a little harsh? The man's mother tongue is English, after all!

Biffy, if you make it out to Oklahoma give us a little lead time and we will try to help you out!
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Old 06-15-2013, 08:50 PM   #18
mon the biffy OP
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So day 5 started at Cameron and Bess' place in Charlottesville, with breakfast from a local farmers market in town. Beautiful fresh crepes and a spicy taco to follow. Don't ask me why those two together, they just looked good.

Onto the motorcycling. I set off on the blue ridge where I left the skyline the day before. Its another good road although a lot rougher road surface than the skyline. It was surprising quieter than I thought it would be for a Saturday. But it still had people stopping and going very slow. And to be honest once you done a few miles of it, it's pretty much exactly the same for the rest of the way. It still had great views though.



I got bored and took Cameron's advice and came down the 56 east. Now that was a fun road. I barely saw anyone else so I may have got a bit liberal with the throttle and ground down the boards on the bike a bit.
Half way down the 56 is Crabtree falls. And is well worth a look, it's an easy 2 minute walk that anyone can do to the bottom of the falls. But worth the extra effort to go a bit further up.



I then carried on down to Amherst, where I found my first roundabout in this country. Reminded me a bit of home.
There are some excellent views back up the mountains from the bottom which are just as spectacular as from the top.



I head back up the 60 to the parkway. Again another great road with quite steeply banked corners which meant I could get even more lean out of the bike before it ground out on the tarmac. :

I came back down the mountain one more time on the 501 to Lynchburg. Where I'm staying with nam96zar (Ray) and his family who served me absolutely outstanding home BBQ'd pork and beef, as well as crab, and a pasta salad. :)

In response to my big plan for the trip. It doesn't really have any definite stops or dates. I'm just heading west along the southern part of the US before going up the pacific coast and then along the northern(ish) part and back down the East coast to Norfolk, VA. Where my flight is back to the UK in early September.
I have a list of things I want to see, like the Grand Canyon, Yellowstone, Yosemite, las Vegas, San Francisco, Niagara falls, Manhattan etc but how to connect them is something in trying to figure out as I go and while meeting and chatting to people along the way. Feel free to suggest any ideas. I'm working on getting to the Great Smokey mountains for now. But from there I'm either going due West on the I-40, or going further south to New Orleans and through Houston up to New Mexico? I know it's going to be hot down there, but it's either get across there in the next few weeks or on my way back in late August, which could be even hotter!
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Old 06-15-2013, 08:53 PM   #19
Ricky Chuck
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It would be a shame to come across I-40 and miss Graceland :)
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Old 06-15-2013, 08:53 PM   #20
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Welcome to America
If you need a place to crash in Birmingham Alabama send me a message.
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Old 06-15-2013, 09:03 PM   #21
mon the biffy OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ricky Chuck View Post
Isn't "foreigner" a little harsh? The man's mother tongue is English, after all!

Biffy, if you make it out to Oklahoma give us a little lead time and we will try to help you out!
Obviously i do speak English, but i still definitely feel foreign here. Probably as much as my travels into Europe.
It's excellent though. I know I've only really met people from this forum, and other tourists in DC and on the blue ridge. But so far everyone has been incredibly nice.
The nature, scenery and variety of cultures are exceptional, and I haven't even left Virginia yet!

I can't wait for the rest of the trip.

If I do go through Oklahoma I will definitely get in touch.

mon the biffy screwed with this post 06-15-2013 at 09:10 PM
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Old 06-16-2013, 06:10 AM   #22
raz65man
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It was a pleasure to meet you and thanks for making us part of your trip. I wish you the best of luck and safe travels on the rest your journey. I will be following along to hear all of your adventures. We did forget to get a picture for your ride report.
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Old 06-18-2013, 08:52 AM   #23
mon the biffy OP
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Day 6
More of the parkway. I went from Lynchburg down to the Willville motorcycle camp ground.
I think I've said it before. This road is great, but once you've done part of it, it's pretty much the same all the way along. Not that it's a bad thing, I'm sure I'll be wishing for road like this when I'm bored on a highway heading west.
The view are still spectacular though.


On my way down the parkway though. They closed a section to clear some fallen trees. Without a detour sign, I just set off finding a way around with my gps. I didn't fancy just following the highway so tried some back roads. Now that was fun! The trees that has fallen on the parkway has obviously also fallen on these roads too, but no one had really cleared them. I was therefore weaving around all these fallen logs, sometimes on gravel. I started to fell like a real adventure rider.

I arrived at willville with plenty of time to set up my tent and chat to a few guys who turned up there as well. It's a great place and well set up.
A few guys turned up for the GS giants run out. I starting chatting to a couple of them and then I realised my earlier expedition in gravel roads pales to what some people have done.
In definitely getting the bug now and my next trip will definitely be more adventure orientated with probably a dual sport bike.

Day 7
From willville I carried on south down the parkway again. some interesting stuff the further down you go.
The Linville viaduct is great and an amazing feat of engineering. It looks cool too. I took the quick walk underneath to have a look.



Just a bit further south from there is Grand Father Mountain. I rode to the top and walked the swinging for the photos. It's a cool place and worth a stop if you have the time.




From there I got the highways to get to Asheville where I stayed the night at ADVrider kennyanc's place.
We went out for a few beers at The Wedge in Ashville where I met a couple more forum members and has some delicious beer. It's not all Budweiser and Miller out here then. ;)
I was treated to a huge steak, beer and a few games of pool back at Kenny's place. I let Kenny win at pool obviously! ;)
Late that night another ADVrider, icecold Dan turned up on his way back home from a fishing trip. So more beers and pool was to be had. :

This ADV community is amazing and I'm hoping to take it back home to the UK and spread the word.
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Old 06-19-2013, 02:18 PM   #24
mon the biffy OP
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Day 8

Rain!

The day started out with miserable weather. Luckily Kenny and his girlfriend PJ laid on a gorgeous breakfast to make an excellent start of the day. They also kindly let me hang around while the rain passed over.
I then set off with the skies looking clearer onto the blue ridge again heading south.
Wow. The blue ridge south of Asheville is extremely beautiful. It goes up higher and the overlooks are amazing.
Unfortunately due to the rain I didn't stop for many photos. I got a couple when the clouds broke though.




The Great Smokey Mountains living up to their name.

I then came off the blue ridge at US 215 going north, which is a great fun road down the hill. Although in the rain I was definitely taking it steady.

The plan was to go to the Wheels Through Time museum in Maggie Valley. However when I got there it turns out it is closed Tuesdays and Wednesdays :

I carried on west to eventually get to the Iron Horse motorcycle campground. That is a great place to stop if you're traveling through. Excellent facilities and everyone there was very friendly. It's in a dry county though, so no beer!! :eek:

While I was there it was the International Brotherhood of Motorcycle Campers annual meet. Therefore there were loads of people to chart to about their previous trips for some inspiration and excellent advice.

I managed to get my tent set up in a brief dry spell, before food, and then sitting down and watching some basketball with a guy who seemed to know absolutely everything there is to know about the sport!

I'll try and put more pictures in my next post.
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Old 06-19-2013, 02:39 PM   #25
Woodenveins
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Enjoying this thread, keep it coming. You have already went by my neck of the woods.
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Old 06-19-2013, 03:00 PM   #26
Chickenlegs
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A couple suggestions for you:

Just north of Atlanta GA you should visit Stone Mountain. From Wikipedia: Stone Mountain is well-known not only for its geology, but also for the enormous bas-relief on its north face, the largest bas-relief in the world.[1] The carving depicts three figures of the Confederate States of America: Stonewall Jackson, Robert E. Lee, and Jefferson Davis

From there hit 1-20 heading west into Alabama and visit Barbers motorsports park just east of Birmingham, AL. There is one of the best motorcycle museums period!

Enjoy the ride!
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Old 06-19-2013, 03:39 PM   #27
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Welcome to the US, sorry I missed you in DC would have gladly bought ya a pint or two and played tour guide. Ride safe.
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Old 06-19-2013, 05:10 PM   #28
ricochetrider
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Ah man, I am SO in.

Nice country you've been thru so far. I rode down thru there - coming down to Western NC via West Virginia, back in mid May. BRP can be either good or bad. Weather-wise, that is. Looks like you had a nice few days on it. When it's good, it's pretty good. When its bad, it totally sucks. Back in May, we had over 50 miles in pea soup fog & rain! It was an organized ride, so it was what it was. Nothing I'd volunteer to do otherwise, yet once you survive it, there's an excellent story for later in life- when you can look back and laugh!

Another great motorcycle campground, if you get a little farther south, is Two Wheels Only, down in Georgia. Nor sure if Pennsylvania is on your return leg, but if you come thru PA look me up. We have a bed, some nice ales, and a good meal or two for you.

Cheers!
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Old 06-19-2013, 05:23 PM   #29
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Awesome. Enjoy your ride. I am near Crabtree Falls and what a beautiful place it is ,also RT56 is a fun road.
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Old 06-20-2013, 04:06 AM   #30
Icecold Dan
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It was great meeting you at Kenny's place. I'm glad I got to share in a small slice of your adventure. Have fun and be safe.
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