A CannonRide Up the Mid-Atlantic Backcounty Discovery Route (MABDR)

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Cannonshot, Apr 19, 2018.

  1. Critic

    Critic More or less!

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    This looks very much like our KAT ride, but seems more remote. I can see that it is an enjoyable ride; as your report has a relaxing feel to it! Thanks Bryan
    #61
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  2. dano619

    dano619 Long timer Supporter

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    Love the history reports.....some gritty folks back in the day!! Thanks for sharing!!
    #62
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  3. Cannonshot

    Cannonshot Having a Nice Time Administrator Super Moderator

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    Heading to Covington and the end of day 1.

    When I say "rugged" it just means that it was bumpier than what we had seen to date.

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    Heading toward the Mountain Lake Lodge.

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    This end of the lake was dry.

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    Tribute to filming Dirty Dancing movie here.

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    Mountain Lake Biological Station. It is a research station with labs and grow facilities.

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    Heading onto some bumpier gravel.

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    Something to do with the bio station.

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    Another Appalachian Trail crossing.

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    #63
  4. Cannonshot

    Cannonshot Having a Nice Time Administrator Super Moderator

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    Heading to Covington and the end of day 1, continued.

    Sometimes cars appear on some of these contour roads. Over the weekend, lots of turkey hunters were about.

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    Tub Run Road.
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    One of those special tight roads going into Covington.

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    Covington is around 6,000 making it the third smallest city in VA.

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    The old downtown area.

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    Westrock is a cardboard outfit. I think it is now second largest worldwide as a company.

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    Too big to wrap a picture around so here is an aerial.

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    Our motel for the evening. Most of the time is was around $75 for a double. Sometimes a little more, sometimes a little less.

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    End of day. For some reason the stopped time on the 276cx is wonky.

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    It looks like a lot of miles, but they seem to go fast - especially the paved miles. This was a relaxed (but sporty) ride with a number of stops for coffee, a sandwich, etc.

    I think that max speed thing is bogus and will show each day because I never reset it from when I was . . . you know, on a closed racing course. :D

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    The Rail bar/restaurant a couple of blocks away was a good stop. Fast food available as well.
    #64
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  5. Cannonshot

    Cannonshot Having a Nice Time Administrator Super Moderator

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    IN-deed!

    It is similar to the KAT in some ways. It was a long winter so I felt really good about being able to find time between meetings and commitments to get out for a ride.

    Thanks. The history seems to add another layer or dimension to the ride. I really enjoy knowing something about what happened in an area when I go through it.
    #65
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  6. Critic

    Critic More or less!

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    "It was a long winter"

    Boy, I hear you there! I need something to pull me out and your RR is a huge help. I hope to get a trip in this year, but the wrath is still upon me. I had issues last fall and only 1/2 back. Life is full of these good bad things.
    #66
  7. NorthernTraveler

    NorthernTraveler Long time Adventurer

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    Location:
    The Big Mitten
    Good to see that Trent's gas and groceries is open.
    Someone had reported to me that it was closed, and I removed the waypoint for it from my route - SEAT.

    Coming down the mountain from the northeast of there heading towards Trent's while I was laying that route out in the spring of 2010 the cam chain guides on my XR650L broke into 4 pieces. The cam chain was so stretched that with the throttle chopped it slapped so much it broke the guides.

    Coasted down the mountain, pushed the bike a couple of miles, left it in the ditch, hiked to Trent's just before closing. They gave me a ride over to Marion where my van was so I could come back and retrieve my bike. Fortunately I had just finished scouting what I need to scout. That became TET-S and now SEAT.
    #67
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  8. Cannonshot

    Cannonshot Having a Nice Time Administrator Super Moderator

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    Day 2, started out with a side trip.

    We took a short side trip over to Clifton Forge to check out some points of interest there. As I mentioned earlier, the gray line is the original MABDR track and the highlighted track is what we rode during this trip.

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    It is a very short hop from Covington to Clifton Forge.

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    The recommended breakfast stop was Penny's Diner.

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    It did not disappoint. Great service!

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    Clifton Forge runs about 4,000 people. It evolved as a railroad town. It still has a big yard and locomotive fuel facility. It also enjoys Amtrak service.

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    There were a lot of coal trains docked along the long length of the yard.

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    The Clifton Forge Station was built in 1902. Now it is a CSX rail office.

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    Remember Pure brand gas stations?

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    They have a railroad heritage park in town.

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    The Jefferson School was built in 1926 to serve African-Americans. Even though cafeterias and libraries were required for white schools since 1902, those facilities were not part of the initial construction. They were later added in 1937.

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    Heading out of town to rejoin the primary route. A worthwhile side trip.

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    The road back to the route was one of those vehicle length restricted paved roads that was a fantastic ride.

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    #68
  9. BigOgre

    BigOgre Been here awhile

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    What guy doesn't love trains?? When checking out Google's satellite view of Clifton Forge's train yard you get a good sense of the size, including all the coal cars lined up. I counted two turn-tables also with one showing the remains of the roundhouse tracks.

    Thanks for this report. Really enjoying riding along with you guys.
    #69
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  10. scarysharkface

    scarysharkface Broke it/Bought it Supporter

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    :lurk
    #70
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  11. Vic5491

    Vic5491 Been here awhile

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    You mention "Contour Roads" often. What do you consider a contour road to be?
    #71
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  12. bkendig76

    bkendig76 Been here awhile

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    Thank you for this RR. We are doing parts of this route in a few weeks; your pictures and info are awesome.
    #72
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  13. Cannonshot

    Cannonshot Having a Nice Time Administrator Super Moderator

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    As we've often said, make hay while the sun shines. :D

    Always great to hear when people like the Trent's folks go the extra mile to help out a rider. :thumb

    Thanks. That facility must have really been something back in the day. As you say, very impressive now.

    Thanks for following along John!

    Most roads are engineered to straighten them out a bit and to have more uniform arcs on the corners. A contour road is often found in mountainous terrain where the path is mostly restricted to a notch in the side of a mountain. Because of this arrangement, the road must closely follow the existing contours of the side of the mountain. This is a situation where you see hairpin inside turns in a drainage between protruding slopes and sometimes those pesky decreasing radius turns as the road follows the contour on the outside of a point on a slope. Elevation is generally level but there are often slopes that are required to get the road up or down in elevation. This is not a roller coaster road, it is more of a serpentine arrangement.

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    I'm glad you are finding this helpful. I try to write my reports to assist or encourage the next rider. That is one of the reasons I have so many pictures of varying road surfaces in each area. The subject of seeing a bike from behind over and over isn't always so entertaining, but as a clear reference about road surfaces and conditions that some may be concerned about it is very valuable. Thanks.
    #73
  14. ChopperCharles

    ChopperCharles Long timer

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    Wow. I'm wanting to ride this on my SCR950 this summer. Maybe "on the way" from NC to Vintage Motorcycle Days.

    Charles.
    #74
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  15. Cannonshot

    Cannonshot Having a Nice Time Administrator Super Moderator

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    Warming up to Hot Springs, part 1.

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    Back on the basic track.

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    Some small protruding rocks. These are pretty mild.

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    You encounter active logging every now and again.

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    Don't pass up Danny Ingalls' overlook. It is impressive.

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    #75
  16. Cannonshot

    Cannonshot Having a Nice Time Administrator Super Moderator

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    Warming up to Hot Springs, part 2.

    Slammin' Sammy Snead was born near Hot Springs. He is said to have had the perfect golf swing. Sammy started as a caddy at a resort nearby. He eventually scored 92 PGA tour wins. He died in Hot Springs.

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    Warm Springs Inn

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    Jefferson Pools in Warm Springs. Closed now. Tommy J used to hang there when he was in the area. He spent three weeks here in 1819 bathing three times per day. The Gentlemen's Pool House is the oldest spa structure in the US having been built in 1761. The spas are fed by a 98 degree mineral spring. The place is closed by the county due to its deteriorating condition.

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    Info station.

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    The Homestead Dairy Barns complex was built in 1928 to support the resort in Hot Springs.

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    Motel south of Warm Springs on the way to Hot Springs. Hot Springs is only 5 miles down the road so why not visit?

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    Gas station in the same vicinity.

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    Hot Springs.

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    Part of the Omni Resort.

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    I was going to roll the valet parking just to see what would happen.

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    Lindsay's downtown bar and grill is the stop to make here. Fried apples, coffee, and a biscuit.

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    Laundry and valet operation.

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    Attempted camo job on the cell tower.

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    Webb's, west of Warm Springs.

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    Downtown Warm Springs.

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    Court house.

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    Memorial to Confederate soldiers.

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    I think they use regional jails in this area.

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    A good place to rehearse.

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    #76
  17. Vic5491

    Vic5491 Been here awhile

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    Thanks for clarifying what a contour road is!
    #77
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  18. Cannonshot

    Cannonshot Having a Nice Time Administrator Super Moderator

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    On the way to McDowell, part 1.

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    Back on the track heading north after the spur trip to Warm Springs.

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    Two minor water crossings along here.

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    One of 9 VA hatcheries.

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    Draws water from the 3rd largest spring in VA.

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    This is a grow out facility that produces 500,000 catchable size trout.

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    #78
  19. Cannonshot

    Cannonshot Having a Nice Time Administrator Super Moderator

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    McDowell part 2.

    Nice side trip to the site of Fort Edward Johnson. The ride up and back down the mountain is worth the trip by itself.

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    There is a walking trail to look at the site. We opted for a more convenient experience a little further up the way.

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    A battlefield is on a spur trip on the other side of the route.

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    They had some artillery set up here. In order to be able to elevate the tubes high enough to fire on the top of the hill they had to dig a hole under the trail of the cannon.

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    Unique bridge.

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    Looking at the battle hill from the town. Some artillery would have been in the foreground.

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    Memorial at the church.

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    Troops were lined up along the right bank of this stream.

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    #79
  20. chudzikb

    chudzikb Long timer Supporter

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    Fantastic treatment of the sites. Can't wait for your coverage of Harpers Ferry and the C&O canal, and of course Antietam. Hopefully, a side trip to Gettysburg, which is certainly worth the time and effort. Certainly, this is the gold standard of a ride report! (especially since I plan on doing this soon)
    #80
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