49 cc scooters seek fugitives and more power in rural Tennessee.

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Day Trippin'' started by schismatic, May 20, 2020.

  1. schismatic

    schismatic Been here awhile

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    Intro

    Two men, both over 6’-3” and both over 200 lbs tackle the back roads around Tellico Plains, TN on 49cc Honda Ruckus’ over four days while aiding local law enforcement with a manhunt.

    sheriff and schmidt.jpg

    My friend Chris (mOHto) and I did our first trip last year on the Honda Ruckus’ and had a great time laughing at each other and laughing with the others that encountered us on the trails and roads around Pickett CCC Memorial State Park in Tennessee. We just finished our second extended weekend trip a few days ago, so decided to write up my first ride report.
    #1
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  2. RedDogAlberta

    RedDogAlberta High Plains Drifter

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    Love it! This will be a ride report where my Grom is a "big" bike. :D I'm in.
    #2
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  3. schismatic

    schismatic Been here awhile

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    Day 1

    Chris drove down from Columbus, Ohio and I drove up from Gainesville, GA to meet in Tellico Plains, TN. Seven hours for Chris, three for me with the Ruckus’ on hitch carriers. Can you guess who chose the location for this year’s rendezvous?

    Chris saw a bear last year on our ruckus trip and I was very jealous. I saw the first one this year and this bear was actually pointing the way to our bed and breakfast.

    bear.jpg

    Chris arrived first and was already talking to the owner of the bed and breakfast, Kyle (Baggi’tard). I chose Tellico Plains largely because of the Tellico Adventure Trail Thread here on advrider. Kyle and his wife Laura run The Farmhouse Inn in Tellico Plains and Kyle even offered to share some gpx tracks that he developed for his Honda Monkeys. Even though the Monkeys are large adventure bikes compared to our Ruckus’ the tracks worked well over the following days.

    bandb.jpg

    We took off for our afternoon ride and headed onto the dirt roads of the national forest. About half an hour into our ride we came across a road block with two guys from the Sheriff’s Department.

    sheriff and schmidt.jpg

    At first I thought our weekend was going to be cut short and we were going to be busted for riding during a pandemic, but as we approached we saw they were both smiling and laughing (a common reaction to two large men on tiny scooters). They told us that a fugitive was in the area and they were trying to track him down. He was riding a green quad without a helmet and we should steer clear of him if we crossed his path.

    We chatted with them for a minute and proceeded down the gravel forest road. They didn’t really ask for our help, but in my mind we had just become deputized and were now the scooter division of a manhunt for an armed and dangerous felon. I take that kind of responsibility very seriously so I flipped my Camelback from my back to my front to act as an improvised bulletproof vest. An unexpected but exciting new dimension to adventure riding.

    A ways down the road we came upon this shack. The fugitive could be hiding in this shack. No vacancy means there is someone inside, right? Chris kept his engine running for a quick escape, while I approached armed with my Sony camera.

    no vacancy.jpg

    Once I cleared the interior we jumped back on the bikes and headed down the road.

    The road took us alongside a stream for many miles. Gravel roads next to beautiful streams was a common thread of our riding over the next few days The area was strikingly beautiful.

    streamside.jpg



    We left the gravel road when we met up with highway 30 and as we approached the Hiwassee River we came across this building.

    meeting hall.jpg

    Built around 1899 it served as a Baptist church on the first floor and a Masonic lodge on the second floor, according to the sign out front. I couldn’t help but imagine a group of men upstairs sitting around a bar drinking while the church service was going on down below.

    We continued to follow our track and rode through some really beautiful areas.

    roadside.jpg

    We passed this structure which looked like another good hiding place for felons.

    shack.jpg

    Upon closer examination we noticed these skulls adorning the facade.

    skull.jpg

    Chris and I went to architecture school together and we remembered from architectural history class that skulls usually meant a house of worship for Satan (aka stomping grounds for felons). We checked inside for the fugitive but I think he heard our loud exhausts as we pulled up and made his way out the back door.

    It was getting late so we headed for the Iron Works Grille on the Cherohala Skyway for some dinner. After checking the parking lot for a green quad we had burgers and beers at the appropriately social distanced picnic tables overlooking the river.

    ironworks.jpg

    So ended day one.
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  4. schismatic

    schismatic Been here awhile

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    Day 2

    After a delicious breakfast at the Farmhouse Inn we hit the road, today heading northeast of Tellico Plains towards the Little Tennessee River. Shortly after dodging a dead raccoon in the road we checked the Mudhole Community Center to see if there was any evidence that the fugitive had spent the night here.

    mudhole.jpg

    We came across a well-marked pothole. I really appreciated the warning.

    hole.jpg

    I think the second part of the spray-painted note was a plea for spelling lessons.

    helpe.jpg

    We arrived shortly after at a bridge under construction and briefly considered a stream crossing. I’ve read that you shouldn’t attempt it if the water is higher than the axle, and the water was 5 ½” deep, so we backtracked to find another route.

    Despite the previous warning Chris hit the pot hole at low speed on the way back. Luckily I had anticipated this and sped ahead to capture the moment perfectly framed.

    hole 2.jpg

    More riding shots from today.

    falls.jpg

    long view.jpg

    shooting.jpg

    another river.jpg

    We found an idyllic spot for lunch.

    lunch.jpg

    Came across Bald River Falls after lunch and stopped for some pictures. Ran into a few guys on dual sports and a bunch of Harley guys. We chatted with the dual sport guys and exchanged menacing glances with the Harley guys.

    bald river falls.jpg

    Got back fairly late that night but had a nice evening chatting and drinking with Kyle and Laura and two other couples that were staying at the bed and breakfast while motorcycling around the area.

    So ended day two.
    #4
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  5. red bud

    red bud alky w/motorcycle problem Supporter

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    cool, i'm from Gainesville too & headed to pickett tn state park this weekend but it's a little further north of where u were

    cool pic's
    #5
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  6. klaviator

    klaviator Long timer Supporter

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    Awesome report so far:thumb I love riding that area but I do it on much bigger bikes.....at 150cc three times the displacement of your Ruckus's:D
    #6
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  7. schismatic

    schismatic Been here awhile

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    Day 3

    Day three continued our great fortune of beautiful weather and great riding.

    cliffside.jpg

    We had a couple scares as dogs that were chained lunged towards us on country roads, but they just helicoptered and barked at us. Our good fortune with canines ran out when we came around a corner to see a PACK of wild dogs- a pack of seven chihuahuas. No pictures as we were too busy fleeing for our lives.

    Since we ran the motors so hard outrunning the chihuahuas we decided to top off both bikes at a gas station we passed. 1 gallon. $2.70 to top off both bikes.

    gas.jpg

    Crossing Apalachia lake.

    bridge.jpg

    We found a lunch spot lakeside with the tiniest little fire ring and since we were on Brandywine Road earlier we figured it must be a Hobbit camp. There was an old man in an orange vest picking up empty beer bottles that were messing up this beautiful site. He told us he was a volunteer and we thanked him for cleaning up our lunch spot. He had slightly pointy ears and was wearing shoes so it was hard to tell if he was a Hobbit. He was pretty tall too, probably the Hobbit mayor or president.

    lunch 2.jpg

    The lake was dotted with these little floating cabins. Will have to come back to this area sometime and see about renting one.

    lake cabin.jpg

    More farmland and twisty roads. Sweet mixture of pavement and dirt. The scenery just kept getting better.

    farm.jpg

    valley.jpg

    Chris saluting.

    salute.jpg

    Could be more evidence of the fugitive in the area. And now we know he is armed. I realized I didn’t have my body armor on today so I swung my camelback around to the front again.

    stop.jpg

    Hiwasee dam.

    dam.jpg

    Ended the day again with drinks and more chatting on the porch at the inn.

    So ended day three.
    #7
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  8. schismatic

    schismatic Been here awhile

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    Day 4

    We were leaving this day so packed up at the inn and headed out early to get in another short ride. Just had coffee for breakfast.

    Coffee caught up with me about a half hour later and we stopped for a pee break. My weak/small/aging bladder gives us ample opportunities to stop frequently to stretch our legs and see some of the smaller details like this millipede. He was about three inches long (the millipede that is) and I was pretty sure those bright colors meant he was poisonous, so I didn’t pee on him.

    bug.jpg

    Animals we saw:

    Millipede.

    Several turkey.

    Squirrels.

    The pointing bear.

    Numerous hawks.

    Pack of wild dogs.

    Partially eaten roadkill raccoon.

    94 roadkill possums.

    One turtle in the middle of road, but luckily he swerved to avoid us.


    More stellar riding...

    overlook 2.jpg

    log and stream.jpg

    powerline road.jpg

    stream.jpg

    barn.jpg

    curved.jpg

    As we heathens headed back to the inn and our cars, we passed a Sunday covid-19 church service where all the congregants were on the lawn spread out on blankets and lawn chairs. We gave them a little beep beep from our anemic horns as Chris rolled over 666 miles on his Ruckus.

    666 part 2.jpg

    As we rolled back into Tellico Plains we were regretful that we were never able to capture that felon and perhaps collect a reward that would fund our next trip.

    Our thoughts also turned to reflections on the Ruckus as an adventure machine. We certainly had a blast but we thought it would have been nice to have a bit more power, and luckily we found it just as our trip was coming to a close.


    moore power.jpg

    So ended our final day.
    #8
  9. mOHto

    mOHto n00b

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    Stellar ride report! Looking forward to the next adventure...
    #9
  10. klaviator

    klaviator Long timer Supporter

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    Cool! I love small/tiny bike ride reports.

    I had the chance to ride a ruckus in Alaska and had a blast. You picked a great area for your report. Now I want to pack up and head to Tellico!
    #10
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  11. schismatic

    schismatic Been here awhile

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    Thanks klaviator. We had a great time!
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  12. Fireman1000

    Fireman1000 Long timer

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    Great report. Makes me want to ride, and that's what it's all about. Good job.
    #12
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  13. PrkChps

    PrkChps Mirth Is King

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    Very entertaining ride report. The Ruckus looks like a whole lot of fun. Well done!
    #13
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  14. Turbodog1000

    Turbodog1000 Vintage Rider

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    Great report, I stayed a night at the Farmhouse Inn during my Trans America Trail trip in 2018, nice place, good people.
    #14
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  15. The Virginian

    The Virginian Long timer Supporter

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    Awesome ride report and the pictures are great! :ricky:thumbup

    Eric
    #15
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  16. RedDogAlberta

    RedDogAlberta High Plains Drifter

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    We need further Ruckus fugitive runs asap. Outstanding!

    I'm headed out on a local Grom Gaggle run Sunday but no armed and dangerous villain on the loose.
    #16
  17. eaglescan

    eaglescan Borrego rocks Supporter

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    You did a fine job of promoting that area. I don't think I have read a report that has me wanting to see that beautiful area, like right now!
    Cool you did it on the scooters, and the humor in you tale is what we need these days.
    #17
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  18. Baggi'tard

    Baggi'tard If I don't answer I'm ridin' or shootin' Supporter

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    Come on down!
    #18
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  19. Baggi'tard

    Baggi'tard If I don't answer I'm ridin' or shootin' Supporter

    Joined:
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    Hey John, just so happens that picture you took parked next to the old barn on the last day is the current tag in the East Tennessee Tag-o-Rama. (I posted it actually). You could claim that tag and post a new one to move the tag along. :D

    https://advrider.com/f/threads/east-tennessee-tag-o-rama.444032/page-264
    #19
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  20. Pavement Optional

    Pavement Optional Adventurer

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    You're making me want a Ruckus! Love the Moore Power pic.
    #20