MABDR, Nashville and the Appalachian!!

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by AL "FLYING CANUCK", Nov 23, 2018.

  1. AL "FLYING CANUCK"

    AL "FLYING CANUCK" Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2009
    Oddometer:
    121
    Location:
    LA PECHE, QUEBEC, CANADA
    Good day

    We had given ourselves 10 years to make 3 great trips together in some of the places that interested us the most in North America!! We did portions of the US and Canadian Rockies in 2013, portions of Western US in 2016 and the Appalachian in 2018.

    https://advrider.com/f/threads/great-western-trip-2016.1195995/

    https://advrider.com/f/threads/great-rocky-mountains-aventure.915231/

    Under the same concept as our previous adventures, basically riding solo to get there to satisfy my adventurous side and ride some of the Mid Atlantic Backcountry Discovery Road (MABDR) as done on the COLORADO BDR and UTAH BDR, and ride a portion back home together (2up) focusing on more popular places .....

    https://ridebdr.com/MABDR

    The following is our RR of our last adventure in the MABDR, Nashville and the Appalachian with comments at the bottom of each photo. Thanks for the info and other RRs who helped us during our planning!!

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    Here is the draft of our itinerary, which is + -6,000 km or 3,800 miles across the States of New York, Pennsylvania, Maryland, West Virginia, Virginia, North Carolina and Tennessee. In blue and black is my solo ride that cover most of the MABDR and return from Pittsburg, PA. In red is our ride together which includes such places as the Tail of the Dragon, Smokey Mountains, Blue Ridge Moutains/Parkway, Mount Mitchell, Skyline Drive which are part of the Appalachian Mountain Range which by the way extends from Newfoundland up to Alabama over more than 2,000 km / 1,200 miles.

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    After spending the night in Corning, which is near the border of the states of New York and Pennsylvania, I undertook the MABDR ... here is a typical gravel road of Northern Pennsylvania.

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    We could resume the MABDR as a series of mountain ranges and valleys ... generally well-groomed logging roads in the mountains and paved roads crossing the numerous valleys ... overall a nice and enjoyable ride !!!

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    Hundreds of km in this kind of nice forestry road. It is not difficult to get lost with many junctions and roads ..... glad to have bought a GPS from one of my friend !!!

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    ... and what to say about the many curves, switchbacks, climbs and descents ... a real treat ...... I hardly met anyone in 4-5 days of BDR at this time of the year…(end of May)...

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    A single, slightly technical portion of a rock climb to the right that you can’t see on this photo which was taken near the summit ...

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    Beautiful view from one of the many summits...

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    Always impressive to see people working on the pipeline which I will cross several times along the BDR..

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    Another beautiful valley of Virginia ... a good portion of the MABDR runs along the border between the 2 Virginia…

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    Impressive to see this young farmer with 6 x workhorses!!!

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    I also enjoyed the Southern portions which I found a bit more scenic and challenging in some ways…

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    My favorite were the numbers 2 and 3 out of the 9 MABDR sections....

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    Some small obstacles caused by the storms of the day before .... I consider myself lucky as I was bypassing or going around numerous rain storms…

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    Kind of a small canyon just before Damascus..

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    The last few kms before arriving at Damascus ..... finally I traveled approximately 1,400 km / 900 miles on 1,700 km / 1,050 miles of the MABDR ...... a rather enjoyable and easy route much doable for most riders ... with a few more technical optional sections. Thanks to those who have established it because not obvious especially with the distances to cover, so many private lands and so close from high populated areas It is not the COBDR but still very much enjoyable!

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    I arrived in Nashville on June 02 and met with Nancy the same day who had flew from Ottawa. We stayed at the Nashville Hotel-Club Inn and Suites for 3 nights .... we had good discounts and the hotel offered shuttles to the airport and downtown which was very convenient…

    http://www.clubhotelnashville.com/

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    We enjoyed our visit to the Country Music Hall of Fame ..... Oups...Nancy locked up in a huge guitar…

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    We enjoyed the many bars and country bands along Broadway road ...... but most bands and bartenders are not paid ... so you have to tip often ... and with $ 6.00 USD a beer, it could get pretty expensive ... well at the end of the day... a good 6 packs along with some rum-whiskey-wine by the pool was welcome…

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    We enjoyed our visit of the Nashville Pantheon which was built in 1897. It is an exact replica of the one in Athens that we have visited during our trip to Greece in 1994…

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    Finally, we were happy to take the road together for the next 2 weeks .... and what better way to start with the Tail of the Dragon ..... we enjoyed it despite that I find the course a bit overrated .... what I mean by that is that there is a lot of dragon tail everywhere including in the MABDR…..

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    The Tail of the Dragon at the border of Tennessee with North Carolina ....

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    Nice place to met all kinds of other riders...

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    Remaining motorcycle parts on the tree of shame….

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    Afterwards, we arrived at the Great Smoky Mountains and we spent 3 days in the Cherokee Nation Reserve, we stayed at the River Edge Motel with balcony along a river and from there we made several discoveries ...

    https://www.nps.gov/grsm/index.htm

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    The Great Smokeys Moutains who bear their name due to the many days of fog ....

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    We enjoyed our visit to the Cherokee Museum ... very well done and informative….

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    A nice little town with friendly people, some of whom also come to Canada to meet with other native nations…

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    All along the reserve there are many paths decorated or painted in different ways which always symbolizes somethings ..... as an example this black bear is cover with the Cherokee alphabet...

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    We took a day to cross the Smokey Mountains and spend some time in the nice tourist town of Gatlinburg in Tennessee ..... two more beers please….

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    After 3 memorable days in the Smokey Mountains and Cherokee .... we rode the Blue Ridge Parkway which really exceeded our expectations ... beautiful scenery one after another on a nice and well maintain road .... we have completed the 755 km - 470 miles in 2 days …..simply another memorable ride ... and without any traffic ......

    https://www.blueridgeparkway.org/

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    Typical scenery of the The Blue Ridge Parkway .....

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    Many places to stop and enjoy the scenery and visit old sites…

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    It's worth to stop to Mount Mitchell, which is the highest mountain in the Eastern Mississippi .... higher than the Mt. Washington in NH.

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    Another beautiful site to visit along the Blue Ridge Parkway...

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    The road is simply exceptional.... difficult to control the acceleratorrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr!!!!

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    As this was not enough .... the next day we tackle the 170 km / 100 miles of Skyline Drive which is literally part of the Shenandoah National Park.

    https://www.nps.gov/shen/index.htm

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    After a morning under intense fog .... the sky finally cleared up to show us wonderful landscapes one after another ....

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    After so many nice rides, nothing better than a good local beer in Front Royal, VA which may have a been at one time the border between New France and the American Colonies ...

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    We spent two memorable days in Gettysburg which held a battle that was a turning point in the 1861-1865 American Civil War between the North (the Union States under Abraham Lincoln) and the South (the Confederate States - under Jefferson Davis) ... We must not forget that 200,000 Americans died in the fighting and nearly 600,000 in total during the civil war, not counting the many wounded.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Civil_War

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    We enjoyed the small town of Gettysburg and its pubs...this pub had a menu with themes of the battle...I had the General Lee`s burger...

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    You can make the circuit of the battlefield by vehicle (one way road) and see the hundreds of monuments erected by the different states and regiments involved .... very impressive .... I recommend to do one of the museum that explain and demonstrate the unfolding of the bloody battle before making the circuit in order to get a better understanding once you are on the ground at the different locations.

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    I could not hold back ........

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    During the visit, you can follow the two different lines of combat ... that of the Union and the Confederates ... there are monuments which some are actually real work of art. Here the status of General Robert Lee, chief of the Confederate army…

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    There are more than 6,000 graves of Pennsylvania American soldiers who died during the wars at Gettysburg Cemetery, of which more than 3,500 were from the US Civil War of 1861-1865… respect and peace!!

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    Impressive monument dedicated to the soldiers of Pennsylvania..

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    On this, we wish you many more years of riding, freedom and discoveries!!

    Cheers
    #1
  2. 88Marine

    88Marine Adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2015
    Oddometer:
    40
    Location:
    Chapel Hill, TN.
    Great photos. Thanks for sharing this!!
    #2
    AL "FLYING CANUCK" likes this.
  3. bobw

    bobw Harden the phuck up

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2006
    Oddometer:
    1,918
    Location:
    God's country, Western North Carolina
    Some ride reports just "work" for me, this is one of them! Glad you and the Mrs. had a great Holiday and thank you for sharing with us!

    :beer:beer
    #3
    AL "FLYING CANUCK" likes this.
  4. Critic

    Critic More or less!

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2005
    Oddometer:
    1,829
    Location:
    West of the Illinois, heart of the state!
    Great job, your photo's give a fulfilling review of the MABDR's details!
    #4
    AL "FLYING CANUCK" likes this.
  5. Insane rider

    Insane rider Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2016
    Oddometer:
    85
    Salut Tonneau ;)
    #5
    AL "FLYING CANUCK" likes this.
  6. Folly1

    Folly1 Been here awhile Supporter

    Joined:
    May 11, 2014
    Oddometer:
    649
    Location:
    Charleston, SC : Bath, Me
    Good job. Thanks for taking the time and making the effort.

    Ben.
    #6
    AL "FLYING CANUCK" likes this.
  7. AL "FLYING CANUCK"

    AL "FLYING CANUCK" Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2009
    Oddometer:
    121
    Location:
    LA PECHE, QUEBEC, CANADA
    Thanks for your comments!

    Much appreciated!

    Cheers!:beer
    #7
  8. AL "FLYING CANUCK"

    AL "FLYING CANUCK" Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2009
    Oddometer:
    121
    Location:
    LA PECHE, QUEBEC, CANADA
    Salut mon chum!!

    I still have pictures of your participation to our ride in 2017 and 2018!!

    All the best in 2019!!

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    #8
    Insane rider likes this.