Fall ride to the Smokies

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Day Trippin'' started by Trophy1298, Oct 24, 2010.

  1. Trophy1298

    Trophy1298 Vicarious Cowboy

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    Had a 6 day stretch (or so I thought) and planned to ride along the Apps from Alabama to WV. On Day 3 a work issue came up and cut the trip short. Made the best of it, rode in MS, AL, GA, TN, and NC, mostly county roads, lots of dirt and a huge mistake getting on the interstate in Chattanooga. Had a flat, went down at around 45MPH, and was amazed by how little water there was in the streams. Hope the pics are enjoyed as dialogue from here on will be in short supply.

    Headed out from Brandon, MS running northeast. Stopped by the Nanih Waiya mound. Was right by the road. Not sure why they would build it so close to a roadway. :D Was also the site of the great opossum massacre of 2010. There were 5 or 6 dead ones right in the road by the mound. Was kinda odd.

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    Never know what you might run into on county roads
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    Then on to the smaller roads for miles to AL.
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    These are public roads, but often go right through the middle of someone's farm. This guy and his son had been in the fields since 4am.
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    Great roads and very few people anywhere.
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    Next, into Alabama.
    #1
  2. Jman955i

    Jman955i Falls Down A Lot

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    :lurk
    #2
  3. Trophy1298

    Trophy1298 Vicarious Cowboy

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    What I like best about traveling with a GPS is seeing the reall curvy or "squiggley" roads heading in the general direction I'm traveling. They are normally dirt and often have interesting sites you just don't see on major roads.

    Somewhere in AL
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    There were a few of these in the Cleveland, AL area. None were open to traffic.
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    You hear alot about TN and NC, but AL and GA have some beautiful sites too.
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    More later
    #3
  4. DavidQ

    DavidQ We Don't Rent Pigs

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    Good start Trophy. Keep it coming.
    #4
  5. Trophy1298

    Trophy1298 Vicarious Cowboy

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    After Cleveland I followed the ridgeline(?) on the west of I-59 on small twisty roads. Was running behind on where I wanted to be and the sun was rapidly getting lower inthe sky. I finally jumped on the interstate somewhere in north AL/GA to make up some time and get passed Chattanooga. HUGE mistake. It took over an hour to get through that city. Traffic was horrible and the GPS wasn't showing me any other routes east and that was the direction I was headed.

    I like to camp away from everyone, so I always look for NF sites with no toilets, or running water. Seldom will you find anyone there. Also, you can normally find a camp site off the road in the middle of nowhere in a national forest. I was headed for Sylgo in the Cherokee NF. No pics b/c I was too frustrated with the traffic and it had gotten dark. Did not make it to the actual campground. The roads were not what I wanted to ride in the dark.

    The next morning I was up and on the road early. The Cherokee NF was great. South and North of lake Ocoee there were some great roads. All the way in to the Tellico area and over into NC. I zigged and zagged and have no idea where each pic was taken, so I will not try to explain them, just show the pics.

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    #5
  6. Trophy1298

    Trophy1298 Vicarious Cowboy

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    Early in the day these pics were taken, whike still in TN, I got screwed, and not in a good way.

    Here it is after being "unscrewed" about 3/4 of the way.
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    Of course that led to this...
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    Got the tube patched, tire back on the wheel, and realized my compressor was broken. Part of the plug for the elevtrical outlet was broken off and not to be found. Had to improvise.
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    After the tire was aired up and back on it was time to have some lunch. Needed to find a place to set up the stove and cook.
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    #6
  7. DeBandi

    DeBandi Exploring Alabama

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    Nice ride report.


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    This is 2 miles from my home in Blount Springs.:thumb
    #7
  8. Trophy1298

    Trophy1298 Vicarious Cowboy

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    Thanks DeBandi. You have a great backyard to ride in. I have really enjoyed your RRs over the years. Mine is short on history, or any actual details, but it has a few good pics. :lol3

    Have any plans to head south Nov 5 - 7?
    #8
  9. Trophy1298

    Trophy1298 Vicarious Cowboy

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    At somepoint during the morning I rode along the Ocoee and took a few pics.

    Here is where the landslide was that closed the road for a few months. Or so I was told by some guy claiming to be a local. He rode a KLR, so I'm not sure if I trust him. :evil
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    Ocoee
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    After I had my lunch I rode more north and east. Rode some dirt near the Harleyhala Skyway and over into NC for a brief visit. I had gotten the call about needing to get back for Monday, so I didn't keep heading north. Was planning to camp at table rock (NC). Have camped up there are few times when I climbed, beautiful place.

    But it was not to be. So I headed back down into TN and GA, winding and twisting on any road that looked interesting. Did not stop to take too many pics, juat in a riding daze.

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    Duck
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    Dry water crossing in GA
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    Found a place to camp (on a mtn in the middle of nowhere) and, after 12 hours of sleep, woke to temps in the high 30's.
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    End of another great day of riding.
    #9
  10. katbeanz

    katbeanz earthbound misfit, I

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    Enjoyed the pics, your company at SLAP too. :ricky I met a British guy at Oark AR over Labor day on the TAT who biffed in the sand in OK and broke his ankle. :huh
    #10
  11. Trophy1298

    Trophy1298 Vicarious Cowboy

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    So you're saying it's bad luck to meet you. :lol3
    #11
  12. katbeanz

    katbeanz earthbound misfit, I

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    Maybe for some, I didn't ride with him. :uhoh
    #12
  13. wolfy317

    wolfy317 Addicted to BMW

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    Nice RR trophy!
    #13
  14. Trophy1298

    Trophy1298 Vicarious Cowboy

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    I'm about to get some sleep. But...

    Teaser for tomorrow.

    Sometimes you're the windsheild, sometimes you're the bug.
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    #14
  15. backwoodsKLR

    backwoodsKLR Ride more, Post Less.

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    #15
  16. Trophy1298

    Trophy1298 Vicarious Cowboy

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    Fell asleep in my chair looking at the moon and stars, then crawled into the tent for the rest of the night. Woke up in to a nice crisp morning. Fixed some breakfast, broke camp and looked at possible routes for the day. The plan, follow the small squiggly roads and look out for flying monkeys.

    I headed west across north GA then meandered my way over to AL. For the past 20 years I have been going to the Little River Canyon area and couldn't pass it up being this close.

    Desoto Falls, drier than I have ever seen it.
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    Standing where water normally flows
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    Then on to Little River Canyon
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    After that I simply followed the squigglies west. Great riding in the middle of nowhere
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    Never know what you'll see on backroads
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    More later, got work to do.
    #16
  17. Trophy1298

    Trophy1298 Vicarious Cowboy

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    Time to wrap this thing up. I like reading RRs much better than writing them.

    Some time during the day the nice dirt road changed to a very hard surface with dust and pebbles or just grit. It was a pain, but the scenery was nice. After a few minutes on it, I realized how easy it was to kick the rear end out and power the curves. If you have ever ridden with me you know how I like to do that. On normal dirt roads you can adjust and normally straighten it up, even when you go a little too far. Not on this mess.

    The results of a 40+mph off
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    Was not too bad. I got the bike up quick and then took some pics. I have plenty of pics of this bike on it's side. :lol3

    The rest of the trip was pretty uneventful. Just small roads into western Alabama and grabbing I-20 for an couple hours home.

    So I don't think I ever technically made it to "The" Smoky Mountains, but had a great time riding some roads and areas I've never been, and seeing some I've ridden several times before.

    Hope to be able to do the actual 6 day route I set up for this trip at some point, but that's for another day.
    #17
  18. Anticyclone

    Anticyclone Ride more worry less

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    Glad you made it through that one ok! Looks like you led with your head. Given your thickheadedness, I'd say it was a good call :D.
    #18
  19. Trophy1298

    Trophy1298 Vicarious Cowboy

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    Didn't want to break an arm or a leg, we have a rally coming up. :lol3


    Bad thing is, I had just put a new sheild on that helmet b4 the trip.
    #19
  20. Fireman1000

    Fireman1000 Long timer

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    Very cool. Love riding in North GA, and I've been so busy lately I haven't had the opportunity to. But I can read about riding there.:D
    #20