Aarrffin' around Appalachia

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Day Trippin'' started by Aarrff, May 18, 2012.

  1. Bearcat

    Bearcat burg1

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    Aarrff,
    It's great that you remember the good times with your dad and that he's still going at 93, that's what it's all about. I'm now 74 and my Grandaughter just turned 16 and last month passed her MSF riders course. We'll be riding together this summer, me on my Lardy (Burgman 650) and her on her mothers Yamaha 1100. :clap:clap:clap
  2. Aarrff

    Aarrff Gravel Grinder

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    That is so awesome! Stop often with her a share all you can! I hope you have lots of good riding years left. My dad finally sold his last motorcycle, a water cooled Suzuki, when he was 85. He was out on it and other bikes he has had a lot and with me too over the years but he has had some balance issues in the past 6-8 years so he just spends more time on his tractors now. His first bike, other than homemade stuff was an Indian that he had before he went into WWII.
  3. Aarrff

    Aarrff Gravel Grinder

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    Oh well, guess I'll have to fix that front porch...oh...hey thanks for the photos from our ride Thursday of the Elk and the two birds on the "Roost". Here they are:


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    Richard and Suzanne saw these on the return to Cataloochee...


    There is a good herd now on a back road into Cherokee that I'll show you sometime...:wave
  4. Aarrff

    Aarrff Gravel Grinder

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    Just have not done a lot of riding in the last month with the constant rain and stormy weather we have had here. Been out a few times with some of my ride friends but our pace is usually a bit swift for photo taking. Finally, on Saturday July 6th I think it was, mrtngal and I got out for a day of riding and have a few neat things to show you. My plan was to take her up Curtis Creek on dirt to the BRP and down the South Toe. Questions was,how do we get from my Haywood Hacienda over in that direction. Basically, we did the BRP from Wagon Road Gap to Asheville then south on 191 and back roads through Fletcher and over Bearwallow for a start. The photos began in the Terry's Gap, Fruitland, Clear Creek area but we had to wander around a lot to get through there due to a lot of washed out bridges and detours like we have now ALL over worstern NC:

    Nice stone work



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    I used to ride a mountain bike over this mountain on gravel and there was a littlle air strip in a big field right on top, and a few old shacks,...now the money has come in and there are royal huge pristine estates on the top with sprawling fences, horses, and what must surely be a wonderful lifestyle looking over the struggle of the commercial valleys below:




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    We crossed over to Gerton as the road became the old gravel I remember. I wanted to go up to the top to the radio towers but the gate was closed and an Arden based sporting goods retailer was having an organized outing and a ton of cars there so we just kept on rollin'. Here we find some remnants of the past:



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    We went on to the infamous Bat Cave and up Highway 9, always a good ride if'n you are not stuck behind the tourista parade, and come to something where I always stop if I need grub. A great place much to the surprise of many who just normally fly by:


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    So following are shots from this place taken by mtngal:




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    A table top




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    Brauts




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    Old and grey motorcyclist ( Aarrfin' and scarfin') downing his grub :lol3



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    The food and service was great as always so there you go! And here is my idea of an easy place to take care of and maybe enough room to occasionally change your mind:




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    After leaving the Straightaway, we picked up a hitch hiker and he rode with us up to Black Mountain where he had some relatives to visit. We didn't have a helmet for him but he made it OK.




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    We picked up Mill Creek, a dirt road, in Black Mountain and went down to Old Fort seeing this stuff along the way:




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    Sorta spooky




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    In Old Fort now




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    There is a lot to absorb in this spot in Old Fort. It must be the only place they have to put stuff. As you can see, they have a monument commemorating the westernmost fort back in the day when all lands west of here were known as "Indian Lands", and a truck cannot turn right I guess or is that all of us, and if you have more than three axles, you certainly can not turn right onto this bicycle path and they have a street light over this so you can see all that at night and some other commercials about whats happening in town hanging on the street lamp and fences around all this so nobody will come along and get in there and re-arrange the important order of all this information. :huh




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    Getting on past their incredible "infosection", we find some other things more simple that I can understand




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    Then we head up Curtis Creek and here is the deal:




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    This is a neat dirt road up to the BRP with lots of good camping spots along the way. We did not take photos as I recall but its the typical forest gravel with lots of elevation gain over about a 30 minute ride up. It is a road that has been here a long time. My 93 year old dad worked on the BRP in the Craggy area and the road going up to Mitchell prior to WWII in 1938 and 1939. His only vehicle was an Indian Chief which he rode over here from Lake Logan on dirt and gravel and came up this road from Old Fort to his work on the BRP, where he stayed a week at a time, driving a steam shovel and Euclid type truck. I need to locate some photos of that as we have some and also the old Indian. His work there ending when he signed up for WWII a year later. Always a motorcyclist though selling his last bike when he was 85. Ok, thanks for reading my rambling and on we go with today's ride:



    View from the BRP on the way to South Toe Road:



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    Down the Toe we Go!




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    My happy mtngal enjoying her ride as always!




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    Good way to ride in the afternoon cool of the forest! Brings back childhood memories....




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    I am sure many of you recognize this old building and its nice stonework.




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    Gotta have at least one barn :lol3


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    Even old millstones in this nice rock work




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    Decided to get back on the BRP and take our chances with the slow traffic then hit Town Mountain Road" for a different descent into Ashfrancisco:




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    No stopping along the Ashefrancisco watershed




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    I have a photo of dad working at this tunnel




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    Ok, enough BRP and now descending:




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    Thar she blows!




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    We hang a left after crossing that bridge and rolled in here for some more grub which was good but enough food for about 5 people.....Ok, Ok, yes I ate all mine :(:




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    Slabbing home and here is a "mtngal behind the scenes shot"




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    Not bad for a two-up day in the hills:



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    :wave
  5. KingJarhead

    KingJarhead Long timer

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    Aarrff... I love reading your ride reports and daily ride shenanigans... You have inspired me to start my own little riding thread.
  6. Aarrff

    Aarrff Gravel Grinder

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    Great Your Majesty!!! I will most certainly look upon your wanderings with eagerness and thanks for dropping by. It's always good to know folks enjoy my stuff! Ride safe my friend!
  7. Bearcat

    Bearcat burg1

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    Another great RR. Love looking at the pic's around your neighborhood, keep em coming.
  8. Cuttle

    Cuttle twisted

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    I thought the BRP got closed near Craggy due to big cracks in the road... did they reopen?
  9. tnktm

    tnktm Adventurer

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    Enjoyed the reading and the pics. How do you take the pics while still moving?
  10. Honkey Cat

    Honkey Cat Tailights Fade!

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    Great pics
  11. Cuttle

    Cuttle twisted

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    left hand.... ?
  12. Aarrff

    Aarrff Gravel Grinder

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    Thanks Bearcat! Glad you checked by. I am having to do some family related stuff fora few weeks with the cage but will be back out soon. Especially in the early Fall! Take care!
  13. Aarrff

    Aarrff Gravel Grinder

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    Hey Gal! We did this ride on July 6th sozI don't know. Not been in touch with local news much lately but if the crack happened after7/6, its prolly still closed. I saw no probems of that nature near Craggy but there are problems all over!

    Yep and upside down if I am taking them :lol3
  14. Aarrff

    Aarrff Gravel Grinder

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    Hey tnktm! On the ride above, my sweetie, mtngal, took most of the pics riding behind me and I have no clue what she does :lol3 BUT, most of my pics and in most of this entire thread, they are taken by me as I ride. Disclaimer: THIS IS NOT BEING RECOMMENDED AS NORMAL GOOD MOTORCYCLE PRACTICE!!! :lol3

    I use a waterproof Olympus Camera, point and shoot variety, and that is what I do, just simply point and shoot. It is on the sport setting, and tethered to my neck with a lanyard, on top of my tank bag is a small patch of velcro, opposite velcro on the front of the camera. It sits there fine until I stop at which time I just put it in a front jacket pocket. When a photo op is upcoming, and I miss lots, I pull the camera off the bag with my left hand. The camera is oriented upside down already on the bag. Why? I have to take the shot left handed and holding the camera upside down allows me to use my left thumb to press the shutter button. The lens on this camera is in a front corner of the camera so my fingers do not block it. Then I just rotate the photo when uploading. How's that explanation?...I'll send you an invoice :lol3 PS: NEVER TAKE YOUR E EYE OFF THE ROAD, just don't do this if you feel a loss of awareness please. Forget looking at your photos until after the ride. Accuracy improves with practice and sometimes you get some cool things you never saw. I can take photos to the sides, twist of the wrist gives you a good rear shot with practice, even from down beside the bike and to the rear then as well. Have fun!
  15. Aarrff

    Aarrff Gravel Grinder

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    Thanks, mtngal took most of them. Good to hear from you! Hope you are well and getting to ride lots!
  16. tnktm

    tnktm Adventurer

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    Thanks for sharing. I see so many things I'd like to take pictures of but get tired of stopping. Gonna see if I can rig up something like you're doing.
  17. Aarrff

    Aarrff Gravel Grinder

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    Be careful and practice makes for better shots. Be ware of cameras that are not well sealed up like the little point and shoots now that have telescoping lens. mtngal ruined a good panasonic lummix as hurricane force winds( 60-80 mph) :lol3 blow all kinds of dust and pollen into the lens even if you do not get it wet!!! Then these orbs start following you around in all your photos and growing :lol3 Those type little lens are apparently not very cleanable at any reasonable cost.
  18. mtngal

    mtngal Lil' Rascal

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    Well, we got to the top of the falls but too dangerous to walk out on the edge for a photo so we will come in another way next time and get that photo via the trail head. Mounted up a new set of TKC-80s on the big Adventure so me and mtngal decided to see how they work on a little off road excursion today to see some color. We rode gravel for a while, then got on some gravel, then on some dirt , then on something like mud, then more gravel. Here we head down mtngals driveway which is an adventure in itself! ABS Off!!


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    Headed on up the road toward Max Patch



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    Mountain Atlantic Ocean Boardwalk...beach closed today...



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    Not sure which came first...tree or stone?



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    Ready to descend again...I am not sure what mtngal is getting me into!!! 1/3 mile to hell probably...



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    I just dropped her off and headed home....:lol3




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    Naw, she's just laughing at me so I guess I'll go back and get her....( actually Wolf Creek Falls is below this ford but no shoes to climb down there today and get a photo so you just get to watch me run back and forth through the creek :lol3)




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    Rock...



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    Sourwood leaves...




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    Lots of yellow color...



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    The girls are always prettier on the other side of the fence.




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    This pretty gal will be waiting a long time for mail here...




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    We still have not figured out this sign....




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    Not sure which is the restaurant, which is the grocery store, but I can see the gas station.....maybe we will go to Hot Sprangs fer dinner...



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    The Bridge over River Broad




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    Til next time :wave
  19. Aarrff

    Aarrff Gravel Grinder

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    I wondered why this went to a moderator last night. Forgot I was on my sweetie's cputer so it went under her avatar.....that is fine cause I been trying to get her to post more anyway. Her avatar is her dog "Murphee" who is rather wolf like in appearance and our big protector and bud.
  20. _anatic

    _anatic Plated

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    :lol3
    Murphee is a sweetheart, nice pics!!