Anyone near upstate SC, GA, NC want to ride?

Discussion in 'Southeast, The Lair of the Dragon - The Blue Ridge' started by stretch160, Jul 19, 2013.

  1. trespalacios

    trespalacios Oh libertad

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    Not sure if there's a route planned yet, different than entering the NC Gorges through 281 (only way I know). Do you want to meet us at the park entrance instead?

    Last time I did those 13 miles it was hell from the river to the gate. Hope it is drier this time though it always rains in that area.

    Looking forward to meeting you guys
    #41
  2. Whitebread117

    Whitebread117 I do what I want

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    Gorges gets 93" of rain on an average year (it's officially a temperate rainforest :huh) and this has been a much wetter than average year. However here in Brevard we've been dry for several days in a row (unusual compared to the summer so far) so it should have dried off a little bit in there.

    Interesting side note, last time I was in there about 6 weeks ago my wife and I were going for a drive in her FJ Cruiser. We were headed down to the river and got down toward the river when a storm came up. Monsoon rain, in 1st gear low range with wipers on high and I couldn't see more than 10ft. Heaviest rain I've ever experienced in my life. Then a tree fell on the car :eek1 What are the odds of having a tree fall on your vehicle while moving? Luckily it had been standing dead for a long while and was pretty well rotted so when it hit the roof rack it exploded into little chunks, but it was a 12-14" diameter tree and did $2k damage to the roof/hood/fenders.

    I'll meet you guys at the lower parking lot of Gorges where the pavement ends, say a little before 11? There's only one other entrance to Gorges to my knowledge, and it's on the east side of park and is a parking lot/ hiking trailhead only. Black 1st gen KLR. If there's time and anyone is game, I'd like to explore some of the side roads. I know one goes another couple miles in - I went back as far as i was comfortable solo then spun around.
    #42
  3. stretch160

    stretch160 Been here awhile

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    I don't know where this lower parking lot is, so I will be at the store at 10:30. Is it close enough that you would expect us there before 11:00?
    #43
  4. Wlfman

    Wlfman Long timer

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    Sounds good to me.


    I'll meet you guys at the lower parking lot
    #44
  5. Whitebread117

    Whitebread117 I do what I want

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    I was going to say yes you'll make it fine, then I realized it's the Country Store at 178 instead of one near Kiowee. I'll plan on being at the lower parking lot around 11:15 or a little after. It'll take about 40-45 min to get from 178 to entrance. By the way, 178 has been closed due to mud slide and is likely still closed unless someone's been by there in the last week to verify otherwise.

    At the 281 entrance you ride in about a mile and come to a 3 way stop sign with the visitors center and parking straight ahead. Make a left a the stop sign and you head down to the lower parking lot which is the trailhead for most hikes inside the park and more importantly it's where the pavement ends. Plenty of space to pause and air down tires, plus porta johns if one needs a last minute break.


    Oh, and just to confuse the issue a little more, for those of you who would be backtracking to hit one or the other of the gas stations in SC. At the intersection of 281 and US64 in NC there is a big BP gas station/country store. Go north on 281 into North Carolina to the stop sign/3-way intersection with US64, it's the only gas station there. It's less than 1/2 mile from the Gorges entrance. If anyone wants to meet there I can meet them on my way through.
    #45
  6. Chiknmunky

    Chiknmunky Adventurer

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    178 is still closed.. There is a detuor,but I'm not sure how far around it takes you.
    #46
  7. Whitebread117

    Whitebread117 I do what I want

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    I believe the detour takes you around toward East Fork/Glady Creek and 276, which is the opposite direction from Gorges.

    For those coming up from SC, plan on coming straight up 281.
    #47
  8. kaosbandit

    kaosbandit Been here awhile

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    Its not firmed up yet, but I may join you guys on Sunday. Its looking good right now.

    I will be on a red gen 1 KLR 650. Stretch160 and I started riding dual sport at the same time so I too am an improving noob offroad, but I think I will be able to keep up.
    #48
  9. Whitebread117

    Whitebread117 I do what I want

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    You'll be fine I'm sure. Gorges is a good place to get more comfortable offroad unless it's really wet, then it gets interesting. We haven't had enough rain recently to get it sloppy in there so it should be good.

    Our rider count could be as high as 10 based on replies here and pm's I've received, so we might consider meeting down the trail from the parking lot a little bit. It's a legal road, but is a tree hugger haven and there will likely be a number of people in the parking lot that would frown/complain about a dozen dual sports going past in one big group.
    #49
  10. trespalacios

    trespalacios Oh libertad

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    I think you're right. It's getting interesting for sure!!!
    #50
  11. Whitebread117

    Whitebread117 I do what I want

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    By my count we've got 4 definites and 6 maybe/probably. Like I said it's a public road but it doesn't take a lot of complaints to get the forest service real pissy, so lets not all meet in the parking lot. Lets meet a little ways into the woods. That way bikes will be rolling through in smaller groups and are much less likely to cause complaints from the militant-tree-hugging-types. Apologies if you fall into that category, but I can't help your narrowmindedness :rofl It's a sad fact of riding in this area, but we lose more and more access every year and I don't want to be a contributor to that loss.


    When you enter Gorges from 281, stay on the main road until you come to the 3 way stop with the visitors' center straight ahead. Turn left at stop sign, and stay on main road after that. It'll weave steeply downhill below the visitors' center and come to another parking lot. Straight through the end of this parking lot is a dirt road with a wooden gate (open). Coordinates for you gps types are:

    35.088652,-82.951092

    There's also a sign that will be very similar to the one below. Road name cropped off the top in photo. This photo is of the identical sign on the other end of the road:
    [​IMG]

    Go straight down the road, and hold the hooliganism over the first several water breaks (there will be plenty more :evil). The road will turn to the left and head downhill a bit, there's several clearings after that. Stop in the first one that looks convenient. I'll try to be down there before anyone else, but if you've gone a half mile off pavement and haven't seen anyone else then you're probably the early bird.
    #51
  12. Wlfman

    Wlfman Long timer

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    I'll be at the lower lot between 1030-11. I'll unload and gear up there and ride in as you suggest to look for/wait on the group.
    #52
  13. mdrake

    mdrake Been here awhile

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    Thanks for letting me tag along. It was a great day.
    mike klx250
    #53
  14. Whitebread117

    Whitebread117 I do what I want

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    Definitely a good day. Whoever has photos of the rattler post them up. I neglected to take any.

    Hope everyone had fun.

    I didn't get my camera charged last night so I only took one short video with my cell phone. I'll post it up after a while
    #54
  15. Wlfman

    Wlfman Long timer

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    Made it home. Sorry i bugged out early. That last get-off I had tweaked the hell out of my bars and forks. Tire pointed one way and bars the other (neither centered) and my shifter was tweaked to.

    Had a blast. Hopefully we can do it again before it turns too cold.
    #55
  16. Whitebread117

    Whitebread117 I do what I want

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    Video link below. Like I said, didn't take any pictures. First ride I've been on in a while where I wasn't leading the whole way or riding sweep to pick up the stragglers, so wasn't prepared to have time to stop for pictures.

    Thanks to all for a great ride. In the past I've refrained from posting pictures/videos of other peoples' offs, but those that have ridden with me for any length of time know that there's ample opportunities to get evidence of my dirt naps. So now I don't feel bad or hold back posting others' oh sh*t moments :D

    Ride with me more than once and I guarantee you'll have a chance to return the favor:rofl

    https://vimeo.com/74074973

    I definitely want to get back in there after the Bad Creek gate opens. There's also 2 more roads that are promising and I want to explore. Also, the cliff photo I posted earlier (and trespalacios was questioning me about) is only about 25 minutes from the gas station. So a lot of riding opportunities nearby, and I intend to venture back that way soon.

    :beer
    #56
  17. trespalacios

    trespalacios Oh libertad

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    It was a very good day in my book. Here's a few pics:

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    #57
  18. stretch160

    stretch160 Been here awhile

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    [​IMG]

    and one of Trespalacios angling for a better shot.

    [​IMG]
    #58
  19. stretch160

    stretch160 Been here awhile

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    More pictures from our stops at the bridge.

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    Thanks for the ride guys. I had a blast :happay
    #59
  20. kaosbandit

    kaosbandit Been here awhile

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    It was good to meet all ya'll and share a great ride. Thanks for all the help picking my bike back up! :muutt

    I am pretty sore today, but I can't wait to go again!
    #60