A few days on the TWVT

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Day Trippin'' started by dstutz, Sep 8, 2018.

  1. Lostb4found

    Lostb4found wrk2ride

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    There's been a few variations of the twvt. From the files I've compared. But the signs I seen marked private were in the southern portion near Charleston I believe. But I never did run into any angry people either. Just heard the stories.

    Didn't realize this was a already done thread I was thinking about heading out and intercepting you guys some where. But hey maybe next time. Glad you had a save bad ass ride. If you ever down this way again. Got some grass you can pitch a tent on.

    Sent from my SM-G928V using Tapatalk
    #21
  2. BuiltnotBought

    BuiltnotBought Perpetual Project

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    Dave is right, the high road had enough of a slope to it that if you'd tried to take that line you would have ended up in the ditch anyway. Might not look like much of a slope but there was enough moisture in the ground and let me tell you that WV clay-mud was like grease. The ravine was kind of nice, you always knew where you'd end up at least. Just missed that spot where I got high centered :)

    It was slick enough that further down that hill there was a spot where we had to go from a high ground into another ravine to make it down. As I was rolling down that hill I felt both my front and rear tire slid into the ravine at the same time, as I was rolling down the hill. Somehow I did not loose balance but man talk about a weird feeling, sliding sideways with both wheels while you are moving forward!

    I'll put some pics up tonight of the mud in the next section, it bit me again.
    #22
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  3. dstutz

    dstutz Been here awhile

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    Continuing on Day 1:

    Before I get started I have to comment that I was *extremely* surprised by how often we had cell coverage on this trip. I have AT&T. In the past for me it's been a dead zone the majority of trips but I was consistently amazed where and how often we had a signal. I don't know if this is genuine progress or a side effect of all the energy work but either way it's nice.

    Around 2:30 I had noticed Micah missing from my mirrors so I pulled over and stopped. He's a big boy and is allowed to take pictures and pee when he wants. After a few minutes I turned around and headed back to see what was up. Just around the corner I came upon a horrific scene captured via photograph a few minutes later:

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    Ugh...the first flat. He was well prepared and was already digging into the bike. I lended a hand where appropriate and we got the tube out. It looks like the little washer on the inside of the valve stem had fallen out when the tube was installed and it caused a small puncture. The tube was patched and re-inserted, aired back up, bike put back together. I gotta say though, I'm a bit jealous of his zip off riding pants converting into shorts! We were able to use the "legs" to protect the brake rotor from the gravel. This location was kind of nice too, there was a puddle right next to the road that was deep enough to check the tube for leaks.

    While we were wrapping up a truck pulled up and stopped to ask if we were OK. A few others had passed and we had commented to each other that they hadn't stopped to ask. I figured it was because there was two of us and if it was just one of use sitting on the side of the road with the wheel off they'd stop. They went on to ask if we had seen an old man drive past in a silver pickup...after a little memory jogging we said yeah. They said he wrecked just down the road...fell asleep or something. Driver was OK, the truck was not. We were up on a ridge road so they were going to need to winch the truck out.

    A little further down we did Alt 1 and Alt 2 which were not terribly challenging but still interesting. Quite a few sections where you're driving on a road which is also the stream-bed. Water wasn't too deep, a bit rocky but not much bigger than baseball/softball sized stuff. A nice, firm base. We've got some videos that we'll get edited up and posted or maybe just put the raw we'll see.

    So about 3.5 hrs after our first flat:

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    By the way...that's a trail stand Micah made himself. Quite handy.

    We went quicker this time. He patched the tube again but kept it in reserve and installed his new spare. Also decided to air back up to factory pressure as he had been riding down a bit. This apparently proved to be a good choice as we didn't have any further tire/tube issues the rest of the trip. I recently installed Tubliss when I put on the GT 723Rs and was running 15 psi F/R for the 4 full days and didn't have any issues.

    Again, some trucks passing by with no one stopping. At one point a truck went past with a trailer then like 10-15 minutes later we start hearing beeping from the direction he went. This went on for several minutes until the truck came into view...it was backing up with the trailer. There was another truck towing a trailer coming the other way. He backed into the pad we were on, turned around and followed the other truck.

    For this flat we had stopped at a pipeline company pad site. It was about 8pm when we were about done. We had already talked about possibly just camping at this spot. It was mostly gravel but there was a big pile of mulch we considered spreading a little out. Ultimately we were both fairly low on water so started looking around. We were pretty close to a couple small towns but no rooms and the closest campgrounds were more of the RV variety.

    There was a gated pipeline road heading up the hill. Again when we were finishing up a truck pulls in that we see Sheriff markings on, drives right past us and goes to the gate to check the locks. On his way out he stops to check on us. Micah was just buttoning things up and we inquired about a place to camp for the night. He suggested the county park (http://doddridgecountypark.com/index.html). We rolled into town, gassed up, got some chicken tenders from 7-11 for dinner, followed the main route which went just past the park, went to turn onto the road for the park and there's a country work truck at the intersection with lights going. I roll up and the lady says the road's closed ahead. GAH! I'm like "how closed is it? Is it completely impassable or like Dodge Neon impassable?" She says it's completely out and we have to go around to the other side of the road to get to the park. She said in fact they had to drive around as well to pick up the flaggers on the other side. At this point it's 8:45pm and we just want to set up camp. So we backtrack and get to the park right about 9:00pm.

    The sheriff had told us there was a house right when we turned in and to just knock on the door. When we rolled up there was, in fact, a house there with the inner door open and largish dog peering out the storm door at us. Lights were on in the living room and it looked like a TV was on as well. We approached and knocked.....nothing. Knocked again a little louder....nothing. "Hellooooo?"....nothing. At this point we were about ready to just find a spot and hunker down on our own but we see a pair of headlights heading our way from the park. Car pulls up and stops. "Are you the office?" I say. "Yep". We explain we're looking for a place to set up a couple tents for the night and the Sheriff sent us this way. He says follow me and runs us around the park to a picnic pavillion. Turns on the lights for us. There's electric, running water and about 8 picnic tables plenty of room for us to spread out. The fee? $15 for both of us. Micah hands him a 20 and calls us even. He tells us about the bath house with hot showers. Heaven! We set up our tents, parked bikes under the pavilion, showered up and went to bed. The park isn't technically open for camping yet, They're still working on getting the RV sites prepped but it was great were able to utilize the space. We didn't take any pics...just wanted to get to bed.

    Day 1 stats: 9:05am-9:00pm, 164 miles.

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  4. bronciii

    bronciii Long timer

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    what no picture of the bikes in front of our teapot? lol
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  5. bronciii

    bronciii Long timer

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    yep, it's an official invite! 'been mayor since june. He ran unopposed and won by a landslide of 100 votes! He's actually a pretty good guy, was also the city police and then city judge for many years.
    #25
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  6. dstutz

    dstutz Been here awhile

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    Actually, just remembered Alt 2 wasn't quite like Alt 1. I have no video/pics of Alt 2 (I think when things got more interesting we were just interested in getting through it) It was fairly flat and a lot muddier. We had a few issues, did a little bushwacking for go-arounds. I had gotten off my bike to help Micah and he points behind me. I turn around and my bike is laying on the ground...the kickstand had sunk in. That ended up being my only drop of the trip.:clap

    Day 2:

    We were packed up and hit the road at 7:43am. I forget where we had agreed to go for breakfast but as we were sitting at a light just up the road from the park I was looking over at a place that the previous night I thought was a banquet hall. It had a fancy sign "The Fairview". Wasn't a whole lot going on at 9pm the night before but this morning the parking lot was full of pickup trucks and there was at least one guy standing in the parking lot on the phone holding what appeared to be take-out containers...So we drove over some grass and pulled in. Turns out it's "The Fairview Diner". Would have been nice to put that on the sign. Anyway we had a nice, hot breakfast and actually hit the road at 8:50.

    Not too far down we hit Alt 3. This one was 2 parts with a small section coinciding with the main route. The first part wasn't too bad just a little muddy in spots but not like the Alt 2. I have video of this section to be posted later. The second part we hit a fork about 1.3 miles in and started to go right, I quickly realized this wasn't the track for the alt and we went back to the fork. It was heading downhill into some not-so-friendly stuff, there were a couple "Private" signs on the 2 sides that I'm pretty sure were just saying stay off the land but neither of us were in a rush to get stuck in a mud-hole and lose a lot of time after the previous day's issues and the main route is honestly a really nice dual sport ride of gravel and (sort of) paved back roads. So no worries. We turned back and picked up the main route. I've got some video of a section a little south of this.

    Cool old barn here: https://goo.gl/maps/aKNARubhoMS2

    Micah actually wanted to take picture before me. It's really cool seeing the foundation stones that you know someone carved out and put in place by hand and this thing is still there:

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    Just a couple miles down the road I made a wrong turn at an intersection and made it a little way up a somewhat steep hill before I realized. I stopped and was yelling back to Micah to just hold on. I could see a building and a little clearing up a little bit where I could more safely turn around. When I got up there I saw a really cool old abandoned church. I was about to head back down and get Micah when he motored up next to me. Seemed as good a time as any so we took a break.

    This is the Mount Union Church (https://goo.gl/maps/pfmyUjZxY582):

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    Some hand-hewn beams for the foundation:
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    Really amazed at how little water damage was on the inside but when we looked at the roof it was slate tiles so that explained it. Just a cool old place. There was a hole for a chimney for a wood stove in the middle of the room.
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    Some random "holler":
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    #26
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  7. dstutz

    dstutz Been here awhile

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    Day 2 continued:

    A little further down we reached Alt 4. About 1.6 miles down from Rosedale off the main route it wasn't entirely clear where to go. There were indications off the highway that there maybe used to be a road or something there but there was a lot of vegetation that was pretty high. So we backtracked a little bit and went down another side street that looked like it might be it. As we got a similar distance down that I was really getting a "private driveway" vibe. There was a fork and the road went off in several directions. We tried one that dead ended at a house and headed back to the fork. Micah continued down another section and I was about to when I noticed an older gentleman in a golf cart. I rode up to him and turned off the bike and began to ask questions/explain what was going on. Micah eventually turned around and joined us. Turns out he knew what we were trying to get to, "old county highway 18". He told us what we saw out off the highway was the way...it just hadn't been mowed in a while. We'd go in between the 2 meadows, cross stream and work up the hill to where the road started to be marked on the GPS (Yeah, forgot to mention this bit wasn't marked with roads, was just the track.) We *might* be able to get up through his brother's property but he was packing and he couldn't guarantee safe passage, LOL. He told us some stories of a girl in a Neon getting up there and completely stuck. Said as far as he remembered it was a horrible mud hole mess. Refreshingly, he also said "I can't stop you from going up there, it's a public road". Seems in a lot of parts of the country people take these old disused roads and treat them like their own property and don't want anyone on them. Who knows how bad it really is but he was successful in convincing us to pass on it. We had lost a lot of time on day 1 and didn't make it too far so we kind of wanted to keep moving.

    Should have looked on the phones...Satellite view and street view shows the beginnings of the road:
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    What we saw was so overgrown though, it looked like driving through a farmer's field.

    Continuing on, not too far down the road is Alt 5. I have video this section. This has the "Groves Creek Ford" and ends up down at the Elk River before heading back uphill. There are actually 2 stream crossings and the first seemed more exciting than the marked ford. Nothing too terrible on this one, some puddles, a little rougher gravel in a few spots and a nice hill climb after the ford. Just after the ford the road parallels a little area where you can pop out on a rocky riverbed right next to the river. There was an RV parked there (so that tells you the road isn't that bad) with another vehicle or two and a bunch of people grilling and all set up for the holiday weekend.

    Right around 5:30pm we made it down to Gauley Bridge and the Kanawha Falls. We stopped and looked for a place to stay. Fayetteville wasn't too far away and was a decent sized town. We decided on a commercial campground and called ahead to make sure they had availability (and hopefully showers), yes to both so we got moving again. Turns out there's a pretty nice Jeep trail in between those 2 areas. This was on the main route and was definitely a little hairier than some of the alts so far. There were again some sections where a stream was running through the "road". No video/pics of this as we weren't expecting it. IIRC it was a pretty firm base just a bit rockier and wet in a few spots. Took us 30 mins to cover the 6.5 miles of the roughest bit.

    We got into town, gassed up and I picked up a Subway (*shudder*) sandwich for dinner. Then off to the campground (Rifrafters Campground in Fayetteville, $15 each plus tax). We arrived just after 7pm, checked in, they gave us a nice grassy area and we set up tents, ate dinner, showered up and headed to bed. Unfortunately, for me especially, this is a commercial campground and there are no "quiet hours". I'm fairly sensitive to that stuff and was awake well past midnight due to all kinds of lights on and people laughing/talking/singing/playing music showing no respect for anyone else. Luckily, for me, that was the one and only commercial campground.

    Day 2 stats: 7:43am start, breakfast, 8:50am-7:00pm, 203 miles

    We're happy we stopped before sunset!
    [​IMG]
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  8. dstutz

    dstutz Been here awhile

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    I had no idea!

    This is classic:
    "The Teapot is up at the top of the "stick" part of West Virginia (a.k.a. the "Northern Panhandle"), sandwiched between Ohio and Pennsylvania. The drive at night along Ohio's Hwy 7 makes it clear that Ohio is to West Virginia as the Dominican Republic is to Haiti. In Ohio it's all lights and activity and a big highway. Across the river in West Virginia it's pitch black. Perhaps the sliver of WV was deliberately preserved by Pennsylvania to provide a buffer between it and the many industrial metals plants on the Ohio side."
    #28
  9. BuiltnotBought

    BuiltnotBought Perpetual Project

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    Some more of the church, real neat place we stumbled on by taking a wrong turn.
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    And I had to laugh at the sign by the cemetery.
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    One funny thing we both noticed is that there were lots of triangle intersections with no stop signs, no yield signs nothing, you just kind of roll through and assume you have the right of way. Though to be fair I don't think we ever did actually encounter anyone at any of the intersections so maybe its all good.

    This view is around every curve. There is very little agriculture in this area of WV, what there is is a little bit of beef cattle in pastures so steep I think they cows must be half goat to live there. A bit of hay fields where things are anywhere near flat too.
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    Had a bit of a stare-down with this fellow at one point.
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    Pics of Alt 2 i.e. mud hole trail. I had a little dump or two here, one I'll blame on my following Dave too close. He stopped to eye up a go-around and I had to stop short. My foot dabbed for the ground but only found air and down she went sinking my side bag almost completely in a puddle. After all the mud here I was really envious of Daves knobbies and only got more so as the trip went on.

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    And now a laying pose
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  10. BuiltnotBought

    BuiltnotBought Perpetual Project

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    A few from the Alt 1 where I got up to my ears in the gully. Of course add about 20 degrees to get a feel for the steepness, pics never do justice.
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    This is one of the 2 water crossings on the Groves Creek Ford alternate section. Its a REALLY nice alternate, honestly not very challenging but its a really nice ride through a stream bed area, and now that I think back one of the rare places that we ran into sand. Wet sand though so good grip. All of the "water crossings" that we ran into on this trip were uneventful, most we charged right through, a few we stopped and eyed up before venturing in but never had to walk any.
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    A little further down:
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    Crossing the Gauley Bridge. What followed was as Dave said a fairly technical section of the main route that was labeled on the map as a Jeep Trail. The road broke down pretty good, if my memory is right it crossed a stream several times, once or twice a pretty good drop off into the stream bed. The road-base was ROUGH, I would describe it like a cobblestone street that was made with all pointy rocks instead of smooth. You would get way the heck up a mountain and then come across a random little strip of pavement left! At one point in time the road had been paved all the way but just over time 99.5% of the paving had just been obliterated.

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    So many one lane roads winding through those hills
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    #30
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  11. BuiltnotBought

    BuiltnotBought Perpetual Project

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    I'll let Dave chime in with explaining this one:D

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  12. BuiltnotBought

    BuiltnotBought Perpetual Project

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    See if this works, a compilation of Alternate 1
    #32
  13. dstutz

    dstutz Been here awhile

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    That's Counselman's Hill Rd that ends with the Castleman Run crossing, not Alt 1. Nice compilation. I think it shows that section is a bit shittier than it first looked in my pictures. As a heads up for anyone else this is main route. I'm assuming it was included to get the stream crossing. And obviously this is one of those roads that gets little maintenance. I assume because of the stream crossing so most normal people aren't going to have any reason to be on it.

    This is right after the route crosses back into WV from PA. Easy enough to go around if you don't want to deal with the mud:

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    The stream crossing is right at the very south end of 32/3 where it meets up with 3/2. One could do either go around and cross the stream over and back if one wanted.
    #33
  14. dstutz

    dstutz Been here awhile

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    Day 3:

    Packed up, hit the road, backtracked slightly into Fayetteville to grab breakfast at Dunkin then hit the road at 8:15am. We reached Alt-6 and headed off. Eventually we got out of town and about 1.5 miles in I saw some signs one of which said about all visitors stopping at the security checkpoint. I figured it was going to be some coal mining or something going on and we'd just let them know we were passing though. Alas, that was not to be. They told us point blank there's no road through and hasn't been since the mining was going on, about 5-6 years. On the way out we had to stop to take a picture of the sign that said no photography (third one back):

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    Continuing on, in the town the Eccles, WV I saw a "parking lot" through the trees. Clearly this is part of some coal operation. Anyone know exactly what all this is?

    Google sat view: https://goo.gl/maps/7bVKNYMMHBs

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    Continuing on, we were riding down a road that's pretty straight and I look over to the right and see an ATV trail right next to the road. I motion over to it and Micah hops on at the next break. I wish I had my camera on, it was cool seeing him riding from the side hitting puddles and stuff. I pull in behind at the next break and then we reach a "stop" sign where it intersects the road. The trail continues on ahead looking a bit overgrown. He's checking his phone and says that yeah, that's the route so off we went. I've got video of this section. Nothing hard, nice well packed gravel but with a bunch of puddles and branches hitting us every few feet as we dodge the puddles. I'm pretty sure Micah got airborne:

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    At the end of this trail it came out at a road and we made a right to hit up Alt 7. This would be the last we'd hit on route 1 as we'd be turning the corner onto route 3 before going south enough for 8 and 9.

    The first half is normal gravel, then you make a turn to the left, cross a bridge over stream, almost seems like you're going through someone's yard and enter a logged out clearing. This one was just the right amount of challenging. Wasn't horribly muddy. Some rocky bits and washouts, generally firm base, puddles along the way. A couple of the gnarlier bits:

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    This is also where I almost C-blocked Micah again. I'd been stopping and waiting for him the whole trip making sure he's still with me and I had just paused, turned off the bike (don't know why) and turned around and there he comes around the corner yelling "MOVE, MOVE, MOVE!"...I didn't have time to do anything, he had room to pass by me and continue on but I again apologized. I wasn't being a good riding buddy!

    I think karma got me back a few minutes later as I was just putting along and for no reason I can see in the vid or remember my rear end slides to the right and I end up half into the bushes for a few seconds.

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  15. dstutz

    dstutz Been here awhile

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    Day 3 continued:

    We started to get towards the bottom of 1 and where 3 would pick up heading north when the SxS crowd really showed up in full force. I guess it didn't help it was Saturday on a holiday weekend. We passed a group of 3, then a single one that seemed like he was actively trying to hit me. The road was really wide, like 3 lanes wide, I'm keeping right and this guy is not looking where he's going just drifting over, and over as I'm waving my arm all over the place. Finally swerves back and I can see the case of Natty in the back as he goes past. *sigh* Further on we hit the mother load. Not 100% sure which road it was but it was *THE* place to be apparently. There were trains of 10 or so SxS going the other way tearing the shit up out of every corner possible with smatterings of large groups of them parked on the side of the road (lunch?) as well as groups of ATV/Dirtbikes. We were glad to get off that road.

    (Oh yeah, Micah? The OSM map data says it's Beantown Rd, so we *can* read.)

    At this point we're on Route 3 heading back NE...

    After lunch we rode down main street in the bustling metropolis of Matoaka, WV:

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    "This town is named for Chief Powhatan's daughter Matoaka who was better known by her nickname "Pocahontas". Matoaka became an unincorporated town when it voted to dissolve its charter in May 2018." Guess we just missed the party. "As of the census of 2010, there were 227 people, 87 households, and 60 families residing in the town."

    A couple hours later we hit the first of 2 Alts on route 3. This one is pretty long. I'd say 80% is just normal gravel and paved back roads. So awesome on these remote roads where there's barely any traffic you can just stop and take some pics, no one is going to bother you:

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    A little further in we turn on Wolf Creek Mountain Rd. Starts off easy enough but quickly gets a bit steep and then I have to stop due to a tree down across the road. Micah pulls out his saw and cuts through most of then I do what I do best with my fat ass and break it the rest of the way by jumping on it. It wasn't very big but it was suspended way too high to just go over.

    Uphill:
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    Downhill:
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    I have video from after the tree stop through to the end. The climb wasn't too bad. We were both able to get going again without much fanfare. There were a couple tricky spots where you had to pick a decent line as there were tree roots and some washouts with loose rock. After that it mostly leveled out. Some muddy areas but it wasn't super wet. A couple had go-arounds. There was a cool abandoned log cabin back there:

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    A little further on we re-joined the main route and stopped in Pickaway to figure out where we were sleeping as it was getting late. A guy pulls up with a KTM 450 in the back of the truck having just power washed it across the street and boy is he excited to meet us. He said he had a 690 and was eyeing up my 701. He was really super nice but we lost like 30 mins sitting there chatting about how much he really wanted to be riding along with us and how he's got no one to ride with. I told him how Micah and I had never met before this trip and about advrider. We had considered staying in a hotel that night as it looked a little threatening but this guy informed us that the cheaper place in White Sulpher Springs nearby was only a good choice if you "wanted to wake up with a cockroach on your face". So we decided on Greenbrier State Forest. We called ahead (or maybe I'm mixing up and we called earlier as it was close to 7pm...seems a bit late for someone to answer) and they said they had a couple spots open but if not there was an "overflow field". Oh yeah, this is also where we decided to skip the shorter Alt 2 the rest of Alt 1 in order to get to the park while it was still light out and not get stuck in some potentially crappy stuff after dark.

    We made our way on to the park and arrived a little before 8. The host came over and told us the 2 spots that were open. He preferred us to take a certain spot since it was a little smaller and the other was better for an RV in case one of them showed up but he wasn't really expecting anyone and it was our choice. We rode around the loop and checked out the "RV" spot and it seemed nice and then we saw the other one that was right next to an RV that was facing our spot with all kinds of lights on. After our previous night's experience at the commercial lot we weren't looking forward to that so we went back and said we'll take the RV spot. $29 for site. I think it was more expensive since all the sites had 110/220 service. As usual, I was excited about the shower house. This campground had quiet hours and people were great, I think we were the loudest ones getting set up and after dark it was really very peaceful. After setting up tents Micah whipped out his jet boil and did up some hot water. Dinner was Ramen for him and Instant "protein" oatmeal for me.

    Day 3 stats: 7:23am start, breakfast, 8:15am-7:48pm, 220 miles

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    #35
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  16. BuiltnotBought

    BuiltnotBought Perpetual Project

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    Location:
    Ontario
    Matoaka.... creepiest place I have ever been. Riding around "downtown" felt like I was living a zombie movie, buildings caved in on themselves, brick facades crumbling onto the sidewalk, abandoned smashed up cars on the street. It was almost surreal. I am surprised at the population actually because it looked like there were more homes in the town than the data Dave put up would suggest but maybe more of them were abandoned than it looked.

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    This car was on blocks and the windshield smashed in. Didn't seem to bother anyone.
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    I will say that Alternate 7 that Dave referenced as being a bit knarly and rocky with some washouts - that was a challenge for me on the big F8. I really found myself missing my old DRZ on that stretch. There is some good video we will have to put together but I almost lost it trying to hop one particularly good sized ledge, the bike definitely got thrown sideways on me but we somehow kept it together and kept climbing. I think if you had been coming from the other way this section would have been much easier, the gnarlier bits being mostly on the one side of the hill and not the other.

    It was shortly after the "field of coal" area I think that I had a bit of an off. The road had taken some high ground and the amount of gravel on the road surface had gone down significantly, leaving that wonderful West Virginia clay dirt/mud to be the primary surface. I was cruising along doing a fair job of dodging the muddy bits until - I didn't. I aimed it just wrong and got my front tire to miss a muddy spot but my rear tire just caught the edge of a tire rut through the mud. Next thing my rear tire starts trying to catch up with my front tire by going sideways and down I go on my left side fairly hard, bike skids along and spins around with the front tire ending up facing back the direction I was coming from and I'm lying on the road on my back. When I pick the bike up and go to start it up I notice it was in 4th gear, maybe was going a little to quick.

    I'm facing the direction I was coming from, notice the mudhole that was the culprit on the left.
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    Shaken off, only damage is a scratch on the shin and some dirt on the riding gear. At least there was no gravel there!

    Another cool abandoned building, this one appeared to be some sort of store at some point. Notice me airing our Dave's socks for him under my bungee net - it didn't work, he may have had to burn them when he got home I don't know.
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    Wolf Creek Mountain Rd. - Ya that was a neat section. Again a bit of effort to get the F800 up there, I think I had a bit of trouble on some slippery rocks on the lower section of it. But it was a good challenge, always go-arounds on the tougher sections, it also followed the ridge for a while which was kind of neat. Plus the old log cabin at the top was a neat landmark to see.
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    At the end of it we popped out onto what was the beginning of someones driveway and were greeted by a host of what we had come to encounter EVERYWHERE in WV - yappy little dogs. I swear they bread everything down there with a Chihuahua! There were at least a half dozen times on this trip when we had 3 or more yappy little dogs chasing us down the road, one little champ chased us for I bet a good solid 50 yards or better down the road. Strung him along to make him feel like he had a chance for a bit :) Another we noticed was silently stalking us for about 10 min while we had a water break once :) In all honesty watch for this as a significant road hazard in WV! This was the only one that was nice enough to actually come and say hello, cute little fellow.
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    #36
    bobw likes this.
  17. dstutz

    dstutz Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2008
    Oddometer:
    344
    Location:
    Aberdeen, MD
    Dipping hands in editing...
    #37
  18. dstutz

    dstutz Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2008
    Oddometer:
    344
    Location:
    Aberdeen, MD
    Here's Route 1, Alt 1:
    #38
  19. dstutz

    dstutz Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2008
    Oddometer:
    344
    Location:
    Aberdeen, MD
    Day 4:

    Left campground at 7:10am, rode a little north to Rt 60, got gas and had breakfast at McDonald's, on the road at 8:10am, couple miles up and we go through White Sulphur Springs to pick the main route back up. Not too long after we entered Monongahela, turned onto FR 296 and started gaining elevation. It got a bit foggy and we had some cool lights coming through the trees here: https://goo.gl/maps/NyzeWwq7Him

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    Right off of this we enter out last Alt of the trip, the second on route 3. The first part is just more of the same, nice forest gravel road. Around 10am we're on "County Route 21" and we encounter a nice section of mud holes. Again, stupidly no pictures or video (from me). I think once we see mud we just get concerned and don't think about recording for posterity. Started off with a couple rutted sections that weren't too wet, we crossed a big gravel, probably logging, road that wasn't on the GPS and continued on. We had to stop to get a tree out of the road. We ended up picking it up and sliding it over 10-15 ft until I could again use my mass advantage to break the end off and clear it up. After that it got a bit wetter. Nothing ended up being too terrible, we just got off and looked ahead a bunch of times. I know Micah has some stories about this section but at one point towards the beginning I had lined up on the left track of a mud-hole and we got off, he scouted ahead poking a stick on the right side and it seemed maybe 6 inches deep. I know I had lighter bike, more clearance and knobbier tires than Micah so basically anything nasty was mostly up to him to decide to continue on or not. We decided to give it a go. I started into the puddle and it seemed fine until I dropped down 6-10" extra towards the end but made it through ok. I stopped on the other side and shouted back my side was deeper than advertised :). There were several go-around that it appears ATVs had used and I utilized those whenever possible but the puddles we did go through had a fairly firm base under the slippery bits. I think at this point I just wasn't looking forward to having my boots be dripping wet again, just damp after 4 days was enough.

    We pulled over at the intersection where the main route picks back up to get some water, snacks and I put my jacket back on. I had taken it off for the worst of the slow stuff and by golly it was absolutely glorious feeling a little bit of wind going through a sweaty shirt! I figured it was slow enough I wasn't really going to hurt myself.

    The aftermath:

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    Not too much later we make our way up to Public Road 55 that winds slightly back and forth along a ridge between WV and VA and Monongahela and GWNF. I've got some video of this, nothing spectacular, just nice, flowy forest gravel. We pass a pickup truck with some dogs in the back:

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    Then a little further another...then a pair of trucks. I wait up for Micah since I don't see him anymore. When he arrives he said he was talking to the hunters, they're up there for bear. We go past Paddy Knob the highest point of the trip, jut shy of 4400 ft according to the GPS. (Oh shush you Rocky Mountain people....I know, I know.)

    A little stretch on a nice part of 250 and back onto some rocky gravel and we pass Camp Allegheny. Picture is right about here: https://goo.gl/maps/NjRxr5bPP7q

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    "The Battle of Camp Allegheny, also known as the Battle of Allegheny Mountain, took place on December 13, 1861, in Pocahontas County, Virginia (now West Virginia) as part of the Operations in Western Virginia Campaign during the American Civil War." More info: https://www.battlefields.org/learn/civil-war/battles/camp-allegheny
    #39
    bobw and GAS GUY like this.
  20. dstutz

    dstutz Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2008
    Oddometer:
    344
    Location:
    Aberdeen, MD
    Day 4 Continued:

    Here's a shot from Public Road 14 pretty close to Laurel Fork Campground:

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    I was commenting to Micah here that I love when the sky has clouds like this. So much more scenic than just a clear blue sky.

    The last video I have of the trip is Sully Rd just north of the Wymer gas stop. Here's a little clip to hold you over:


    And another random mountain/tree shot from that road:

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    Towards the upper end of all this we finally got far enough out of the NRQZ to have cell service again we pulled over to check in on sleeping arrangements. We were very close to Canaan Valley Resort Park so gave them a call and they had space so over we went. Micah had mentioned about camping in Dolly Sods but we both liked the idea of having water/toilets and I really liked the idea of having a shower, as usual. We only had 70ish route miles left so we actually stopped on the early side, we had still covered a good amount of ground for the day though. The forest roads were definitely flowing better. We arrived a little before 4:30pm, checked in, set up camp and actually enjoyed the chance to lay some stuff out in the sun to dry (like my aforementioned smelly socks and my towel). This is also the first time I realized we hadn't taken any pictures of our camp sites since we'd typically been arriving at dark or had more important things to tend to.

    So here you go:

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    Deer all over the place, the lady in the office told us they have a partial albino deer roaming around. This is from our site, they had walked right through the other site:

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    I also looked over the bike. Here's some mud from the earlier Alt and apparently my new rear tire is a little taller than stock since it rubbed a hole through the mud flap, but only on the one side (???):

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    Micah was checking out his skid plate and it had a real nice ding on the front edge through the powercoat and into the aluminum. There was also a fairly deep gash on the underside going pretty much the whole way along the length. (Maybe he has pictures?)

    Micah and I took the opportunity to head back to the office and get some ice cream and enjoy the view and breeze for once. I also pumped my tires back up from 15/15 to 25/32ish. There wasn't that much route left and we weren't expecting it to be that bad and I didn't want to stop before heading home. Around 9:40pm laying in the tent, heard some coyotes.

    Day 4 stats: 7:10am start, breakfast, 8:10am-4:22pm, 179 miles

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    #40
    bobw likes this.