traveling about in NC

Discussion in 'Day Trippin'' started by 35xj, Mar 15, 2014.

  1. 35xj

    35xj Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2008
    Oddometer:
    952
    Location:
    asheville, nc
    since everybody else is doing it, I thought i'd start a recurring thread of my travels about our state, so here we go...
    this is Kat, the poor girl I convinced to marry me some years ago (she's Smellykat on here)
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    se has recently quit her job to go back to school, an endeavor that essentially guarantees our future life will be one of wealth and happiness!
    she's going to become... a middle school science teacher!

    so, its her spring break, and I find myself available so,a ride is planned. initially we were planning to ride down to New Orleans, but after some thought, the Outer Banks seemed like a much more relaxing option

    so, I loaded the pelicans on the 950, and strapped a borrowed set of wolfman soft bags (thanks Pete) onto Kats husky 630, and off we went .Kinda

    We actually cheated a little, and trailered the bikes out to Raleigh NC, as riding down I40 sucks, and adds significant distance to the trip, without any real upside.

    But, then we were on the bikes!
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    So, we have been out to the outer banks a few times over the years, and find the top end to be distasteful. Too many people, to much Bullshit(with the exeption of the Wright brothers Museum, which is AWESOME, and highly recommended!)
    So we decided to take HWY 64 out of Raleigh, all the way out to Roanoke Island for our first nights destination. Easy ride, mostly a 70MPH 4 lane with minimal traffic, and some CRAZY HUGE farms(none of which I took pictures of!
    Scoured the Internet, and found a Pretty cool B&B in Manteo (the town on Roanoke island) Owned by John and Noel. Super cool people, with a bunch of history around. johns Grand father was the guy who sent the original telegram about the Wright Brothers first flight!
    so, we pulled up to our place, and found it to be really cool
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    the building pictured is an ongoing project, and the actual house is a late 1800's house still filled with old family furniture and pictures. Pretty cool place.
    we walked into town, and found the restaurant/bar open, so we had a huge ass cheese burger and some beers, and called it a night!
    #1
  2. 35xj

    35xj Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2008
    Oddometer:
    952
    Location:
    asheville, nc
    So, as has become my Norm, I was wide awake at 6 am. What to do, what to do, so I grabbed my camera,snuck out of our room, made some coffee, and headed outside to sit on the big covered deck and watch the sun come up. It was a little chilly, solid frost on the bike!
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    back of the house
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    the deck
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    Ive also started playing more with my camera, so I took a ton of pictures, watching the sun come up.

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    [​IMG]then Kat found me.

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    we hung out, drank some more coffee, and hit the road again. Plan was to head over to Hwy 12, and head south towards Hateras for lunch. Stopped and checked out the lighthouse again. I'ts currently not open for climbing, but its well worth it when it is. Pretty neat visitors center here if you have time. Interesting story about moving the lighthouse to its current location.

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    then, tried to eat at Pops raw bar for lunch, but, as with most stuff on the banks, its still closed for the season. a couple miles further down, we found a decent restaurant. nothing special, but not a bad cheese burger!

    Then it was time for our first ferry ride of the trip. The NCDOT runs a free ferry from Hateras over to VOcracoke island, which happens to be our favorite of the outer banks. We just managed to catch the 3 o clock ride. With all the crazy weather, the channel between the 2 islands is filling up, creating a need for constant dredging, it also means that the ferry trip is kinda like a water born autocross course. at some points, you're hauling ass, then, you all but stop, and make a pivot turn. Pretty fun though.

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    #2
  3. 35xj

    35xj Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2008
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    952
    Location:
    asheville, nc
    Ocracoke...

    probably the second most relaxing place ive ever been. Its great, because there's not that much to do. Once you get off the ferry youre at the northern tip of the island, its about 12 miles into town. Pretty quickly, you come up on the mini horse area. The story goes something about the Spanish bringing mini horses to the islands many years ago, and these being the land locked descendants.
    To me, they look an awful lot like the full size horses in my yard, but anyway.

    We of course stopped to make sure they hadn't become smaller since our last trip, they had not, so we continued into town and to our B&B. We've stayed at the same place the last several times down.(Crews Inn B&B) its affordable(cheap) the owner is a really nice guy, and it has lots of interesting history. The house was built by the family that started the first general store on the island, and still has lots of really cool old pictures, etc. the owner also wrote a book (Ocracokers) about life on the island.

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    theatporch has seen a lot of feet!

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    One of the other great things about this B&B, is its proximity to the beer store! (its across the street)

    Zillies... I come from the land of microbreweries, we seem to have a new one pop up once a week, and I attempt to try them all. So i'm hard to impress with beer selection, But, this place is awesome!

    The best part, they have 4 taps, and a giant fridge full of all kinds of bottled beer. I tried a bunch of beer, I'd never heard of. It seems as though you're doing wrong, but you can open the fridge, select a bottle, open it and consume it on their awesome porch! And the bottles average about 3.50 each! They also have a great wine selection, as well as a great selection of meats and cheeses. Its a cool spot!
    they also have these super cool heaters on the deck.
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    So, they open at 4, and close about 8. We managed to spend those hours there!

    otherwise, the island has a cool nature trail, that apparently takes you out to where the navy killed Blackbeard, a lighthouse, and some super friendly kat's. In season, the kayak tours are pretty fun, and the restaurant scene is pretty good, and you can small boat ferry's out to Portsmouth island (apparently super cool)
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    After a couple of days bumming around on Ocracoke, it was time to head onwards, the ferry from Ocracoke to the main land offers 2 choices. Swan quarter, which lands north of Ocracoke, and cedar Island, which lands South. we chose to go to cedar Island, on the 7.30 AM boat. Its 10 bucks a vehicle, and takes about 2;15 hours. Luckily, with the time change, the 7.30 boat was just in time for sunrise!
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    The cedar island ferry port drops you in the middle of nowhere, and you ride through some national forest, and a bunch of wildlife areas. Pretty fun(make sure you gas up on Ocracoke!

    From there, we rode down the coast and into Morehead city for lunch and a stroll around. then onwards to Wilmington to spend the evening, and spend the night.

    We had planned to keep heading down the coast to Folly Beach, Sc, but with the impending rain and 40mph winds, we decided to call it, and head for home.

    All in all, we rode the bikes 653 miles, drank some good beer, saw some neat stuff, and had a pretty relaxing trip!
    #3
  4. wipfel

    wipfel Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2011
    Oddometer:
    293
    Location:
    Nashville
    I taught 7-12 and middle school was my favorite. Good luck to her! Look forward to the rest of the ride :).
    #4
  5. Rutabaga

    Rutabaga Been here awhile

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    Aug 16, 2012
    Oddometer:
    734
    Location:
    Southeast Lower Carolina
    Nice trip. Love the Outer Banks. Spent a lot of nights over there, most in the Pony Island Motel. Great time of the year to be there. Those ferry runs are a fantastic value and great sightseeing venue. Thanks for the memories.
    #5
  6. trespalacios

    trespalacios Oh libertad

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2012
    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    Upstate SC
    Very nice pics. Glad you guys got to relax. Look forward to your future trips and I'll hopefully see you in Hot Springs next weekend
    #6
  7. CharlestonRider

    CharlestonRider Adventurer

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    Jul 17, 2009
    Oddometer:
    69
    Location:
    Charleston, SC
    Nice ride...Thanks for sharing! And, kudos to your wife for choosing to be a middle school science teacher.

    Cheers.
    CharlestonRider
    #7
  8. Married Man

    Married Man Been here awhile

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    Feb 21, 2013
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    133
    Location:
    Raleigh, NC
    Great pictures! Best of luck to Kat. Hopefully, the legislature will come to its senses soon and start supporting the teachers again.
    #8
  9. 400psi

    400psi Cropdusting

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2009
    Oddometer:
    538
    Location:
    Asheville NC
    Love the photos! Looks like good times had by all!
    #9
  10. 35xj

    35xj Been here awhile

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    Oct 30, 2008
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    Location:
    asheville, nc
    yep, you'll see me! we still planning on Friday about lunchtime? looks like I was able to find a bike for Dad.
    #10
  11. Laconic

    Laconic Anodyne

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    Recalculating...
    Subscribed.

    Very nice work with the camera. :deal
    #11
  12. sweetwater

    sweetwater Been here awhile

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    May 30, 2007
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    466
    Location:
    Charlotte Metro
    I'm in too! Really enjoy seeing our state as the topic, lots of nice shots!
    #12
  13. Gaston Gagne

    Gaston Gagne Past Easy

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2006
    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    Western Piedmont, NC
    Very nice photography. Looking forward to more.
    #13
  14. bomose

    bomose Long timer

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    Jul 22, 2007
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    Location:
    Hoover,Al
    I love riding in NC. Looking forward to your continuing report.
    #14
  15. trespalacios

    trespalacios Oh libertad

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2012
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    Upstate SC
    That's the plan
    #15
  16. RobbieO

    RobbieO Muskokatard

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    Location:
    Dumpmere - Muskoka
    Wow!
    You have a really good eye for photography! :clap
    #16
  17. Aarrff

    Aarrff Gravel Grinder

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2009
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    Location:
    Ol' Smokie
    Great a stuff! I took Barb ( mtngal) down the coast two years ago we hung out a a few days down there then kept going south until we were in Charleston...I think we ate our way all down the east coast and I am still trying to loose that trip from my waist :lol3 Awesome camera work!
    #17
  18. 35xj

    35xj Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2008
    Oddometer:
    952
    Location:
    asheville, nc
    Its mid march, and its going to be 68 degrees? Time to go ride!

    TylerSC was in the southeast forum putting together a ride in Hotsprings to talk about and plan a TAT ride, somehow my Dad (scbob) got involved, and I volunteered to show them a little of our local dirt.
    The plan was to get together for lunch and go for a ride Friday afternoon, So dad, Trespalacious, JayWNC, tyler, dad and I were eating on the porch when a guy rode passed on his loaded Wr250, it turned out to be Hairball29, who had ridden up from Atlanta for the weekend ride(in the COLD!) Once we finished eating, thawed out Hairball, got unloaded and geared up, it was 2 o'clock, so I decided on a quick out and back on Hurricane creek.
    Hurricane is a legal forest road between maxpatch and I40, and was once a great fun rocky trail, with several good water crossings, and an abandoned school bus. Last year the Forest service decided it was time to "maintain" the road with a good size bulldozer. One decent section of the trail was closed and a new dirt road was pushed through, a lot of the rock ledges were reduced, and the school buss portion was also closed off. Luckily, the nasty winter we've had has made significant progress in unimproving the road.
    I didn't get many pictures other than water crossings, because that's where the best chance of disaster lies.... a fact that I would prove to be true on Saturday!


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    TylerSC

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    SCbob
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    jayWNC, pulling the wheelie that didn't end quite perfectly....
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    and im pretty sure this is Hairball
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    this is what the new road section the forest service built looks like now
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    all in all, Hurricane went pretty well, no disasters, and a few decent miles of dirt, a little gravel, and some pretty fun twisty pavement!
    #18
  19. 35xj

    35xj Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2008
    Oddometer:
    952
    Location:
    asheville, nc
    not sure what's going on with the pictures, but it wont let me delete them?
    #19
  20. 35xj

    35xj Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2008
    Oddometer:
    952
    Location:
    asheville, nc
    Saturday 400psi showed up, and so did Rick and Dennis, the guys from easttnadv
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    (definetly not a pic of Dennis, hiding behind Rick peeing!)
    these 2 guys are retired, and spend most of their time scouting, finding and linking trails. The perfect guys for showing the gang around!

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    we took off towards rich Mountain, and over in TN, rode down some really good gravel, and through some more water crossings, and then took off onto one of the trails they've found. We were warned that it would require some picking up of bikes to get over downed trees, so a few of the group opted to not get involved in that, and rode the bypass around
    We didn't get too far before our first tree encounter
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    I finally used the folding saw I've had in my camelback for the last 3 years!

    The next tree proved to be slightly more interesting....I hopped off my bike and walked back to the tree to get a couple pics, just in time for JayWNC's turn, not entirely sure how it happened, as he did in fact clear the tree, but something went wrong on the touch down I guess
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    400psi, trespalacios and Scbob watching the show...
    then we spent a few minutes doing some bike retrieval!
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    everybody else made the log, with Dad having a pretty impressive save on the very edge,
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    pete, dad, and jay watching trespalacios, bang his DR650 over the log

    From there we got into the ever confusing "maze" of Cocke county TN, it seems that no matter how many times I follow Dennis through that area, I end up more lost and confused than the time before! That guy knows that place better than anybody i've ever met. Then, it was off to Blacks market for a much needed sandwich and some go juice for the bikes
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    Next stop was the tower on snowbird. This is a neat spot. The climb up to it os steep, loose and fast, and once you pop out of the woods, you are rewarded with an unreal view! the AT also crosses right through here (and it looks like it was made for a motorcycle....:evil)
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    from there, we pretty much headed back to camp , as it was time for a beer, and everybody had had a good injury free day!

    now... You may hear a rumor, that I decided to bypass a perfectly good bridge in favor of riding through what appeared to be a fairly shallow, slow moving creek. This rumor may also include it being fender deep, me hitting a rock mid stream and my going down in the creek with a running bike, while EVERYBODY else watched from said bridge!
    However, since nobody can produce photographic evidence of that, the wallowing in cold deep water trying to shut the bike off or me dumping the water out of my boots, it never happened

    it was damn cold riding down 209 dripping wet though!
    #20