Tellico Adventure Trail reports

Discussion in 'Southeast, The Lair of the Dragon - The Blue Ridge' started by Baggi'tard, Oct 17, 2014.

  1. Baggi'tard

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

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    There is a thread in "layin down tracks" that introduces the Tellico Adventure Trail, for planning, info, and .gpx file. But I figured this would be a better place for people to see the reports of those riding it. So after quite a bit of self-testing, I had some friends come up to help me give it a better test from a group standpoint. Here's the initial report copied over from the GPS tracks thread.


    October 9-11, 2014

    Russ, Brad, and I completed most of the three days of the TAT. Thursday not only did we complete the whole Day 1 route, but we put in more miles going down to Copperhill and back to find some hardware that went missing on Brad's WR450F. 190 miles in four seconds less than 6 hours of riding according to my computer, so we averaged almost 32 mph. Took us close to 10 real hours with planned and unplanned stops, photo ops, etc. Even though there was a bunch of rain north of us, we had a great day of weather and only ran into a little shower when we were almost back home.

    So we tested the whole "there are no gas stops in the Big Frog through Cohutta Wilderness loop" warning. Brad's WR450 has a micro tank and he ran out of fuel about 75 miles. We almost made it to the Ocoee #2 powerhouse. Luckily he had me on the Austrian Super Tanker for backup. Within a few minutes he had two liters of fuel and we were back rolling again. So if you can't make about 85 miles on your tank, better have some spare fuel.

    First gravel we hit was up toward Oswald Dome and over to Benton Mountain/Chilhowee Mountain. Still cloudy and foggy down low, clear upper elevations.

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    We were on DR650, WR450F, and 640ADV
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    Still foggy down below by the time we got to Ocoee River overlook. Our destination in the background..
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    Beautiful in N. Georgia too.
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    pondering what good are small tanks?? :lol3
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    they are good for borrowing gas on the side of the road...

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    rain finally moving in from the west, from Buck Bald

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    Russ and I had a moment of miscommunication, not paying attention at the right thing at the right time, and to avoid hitting me, took a digger. Banged up his foot, but nothing some Advil, beer, and Angel's Envy couldn't apparently cure. Still rode the next two days!

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    10 October 2014
    Even though it was a high percentage of rain for today, and there was a LOT of rain to the north of us, it didn't rain here until later in the afternoon. We got some great riding in. From Starr Mountian to Candy Mountain NC back to McFarland and Smith Mountain and then back to Joe Brown Hwy (NC) through Unicoi Gap before making it home. The only part of the trail we didn't do was Witt Road. Somebody had taken enough beating on the rocky trails and was "done" for the day. We again average about 32 mph on my computer, so figure another 6 hours of riding time.

    Lesson learned, soften your suspension up if you don't want to get beat to death, these are not roads for stiff motocross or road bike damping settings. :ear

    We "discovered" a great gas station to take care of micro tank issues for this day's ride. Just south of Farner on Hwy 68 (intersection with Hall Road) is the Jett Mart. 100% gas, 87 and 93 octane. It's about 1/2 south of where the track turns onto Pine Ridge Road on the way to Candy Mountain. And is then again very close to where the trail is going back north after the McFarland/Smith Mtn area. We filled up the micro tank each time here, and were well within the 75 mile capacity. Plus they were very nice at the store, even with some hot food for lunch.


    Up to Starr Mtn overlook
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    Nice view from Starr Mountain, over Rural Vale, looking toward NC.
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    I've been accused of being a ride "slave driver".. must be true, we took no pictures on the great little "supermoto" loop down to Candy Mountain NC and back.. Too much fun twisting throttles and scrubbing off tires I guess.

    cool shot looking out of the ruins at McFarland
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    Went down to the Apalachia Powerhouse. The suspension bridge is getting refurbished, looking very spiffy indeed.
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    We relaxed most of the evening playing pool and listening to The Who Quadrophenia (live from London 2013).

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    11 October 2014
    The rain had moved in pretty good overnight, with a lot still streaming out of the Gulf, and straight toward us. Or so the radar indicated anyway. The mountains do kinda make their own weather here. So after a leisurely breakfast, a visit to Tellico Grains, and figuring we better get out there since the cruiser riders were actually out riding, we headed out about 1030 or so. Time line was to be back in time for the MS State football game, since that's where Brad went to school, and played ball.

    We did much of the Day 3 track, just not the NC part. The roads were wet all day, but we never got rained on, kinda strange. We went up to Whigg Meadow, then went back to Green Cove for a hot dog. Up to the top of Beaver Dam Road. When we rode the big group up there at the E TN meet and eat, there was a LOT of loose gravel. Today the gravel was pushed into two tracks (pretty high fluffy center and edges) and you could really move along, as long as you stayed in the wheel tracks. Was pretty squirrely in spots if you changed lanes. We went back down to Green Cove and took Bald River Rd (126) to Wildcat Rd (384), then back to the house. We got there not too long after 1530, and Brad enjoyed watching MS State kick Auburn's ass.

    If you think about riding from Tellico Plains, up to NC, back to Green Cove, up to top, back to Green Cove then back to Tellico via the gravel you'll prolly realize it was more than 75 miles...in flight refueling required...:rofl

    Tellico Grains
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    Lots of people out bear hunting this week, even the whole family.
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    Along North River Rd
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    Refueling along the way was inevitable today. Prices go up as does the elevation and demand. :rofl

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    #1
  2. Baggi'tard

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

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    Russ posted this follow up..

    #2
  3. Baggi'tard

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

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    Brad posted this follow-up.. LOL

    #3
  4. tellicotom

    tellicotom Been here awhile

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    Thanks for sharing the tracks!

    There is gas just off the Big Frog loop. If you are doing the loop clockwise from Thunder rock campground you pass near Conasauga Lake and are FR17. I go off my map for a little bit, so going off memory, I think you stay on 17 until you come to a T at the bottom of the hill, there is a little kiosk and Forest Service building almost directly across from the T.

    If you make a right, you continue the loop and come to Cotton patch Horse Camp and the Conasauga River bridge. Anyway , if you make the left at that T and go about 5 miles (just follow main road downhill) you will come out on US 411 and a gas station is right there. Nice folks and n interesting stop. We were there back in the summer and the locals were selling watermelons with samples, MNM, MNM good!
    #4
  5. Baggi'tard

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

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    Thanks for the info, perhaps St. Clair's gas station in Cisco GA? It's where "old hwy 2" meets up with 411. about 3 miles off the loop?
    #5
  6. Baggi'tard

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

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    A friend of mine from MS wants to get in one last dirt ride this year, so he's coming up next Thursday. We will ride at least Friday through Sunday, 14 to 16 November. Anybody else that wants to come is welcome
    #6
  7. 666april

    666april n00b

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    Do you have any specific roads planned? Meeting spots? Times?

    A few friends and I will be down there this weekend looking for some back roads. Hoping the weather doesn't do us in!
    #7
  8. Baggi'tard

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

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    Not hard to find backroads here.. The meeting spot is the Farmhouse Inn, that's where I live and where my buddies will be too! No time schedule or exact routing as of yet, but we'll be on mostly gravel with a few back roads for sure, riding enduros don't ya know. We'll be somewhere in the Citico Creek, Bald River Gorge, Starr Mtn, Kimsey Mtn, Big Frog Wilderness areas. I'm guess we won't be setting the world ablaze on Friday to get going, but Saturday and Sunday will be a better day temp-wise too.
    #8
  9. Baggi'tard

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

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    While it WAS cold Friday and Saturday, the sun was out, skies clear, and the roads were mostly clear. The frozen leaves were pretty slick though, and the icy mudhole every now and then.

    About 3100 feet or so (Doublecamp Rd), there was thick ice on the trees.

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    On Saturday that ice was melting off and falling on the ground, almost looked like it had snowed (Beaver Dam Rd).

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    Richard on his KTM 690R

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    Unfortunately for me, while checking out a trail between N. River Rd and the Cherohala Skyway, I got "upside down" and have twisted and injured my knee pretty good. Of course the battle bike pretty much made it through unscathed, think the only damage was the tab broke off the choke lever. Thank God for riding buddies that come back to look for your dumb ass.
    #9
  10. kingrj

    kingrj Been here awhile

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    Annual Frozen Nuts Tour of Tellico..Last Friday and Saturday from the Farmhouse Inn in Tellico Plains, TN.

    We left the Farmhouse Friday morning at 29 degrees F! As usual Kyle was kind enough to lead the whole group which consisted of ...me!

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    First day was all I could do to keep up with Kyle without crashing..He was going so fast that I didn't get to see any sights until we got higher up in elevation and ran into these beautiful views of frozen dew on the trees!

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    This is what it looked like up close:

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    It really got interesting on Saturday morning. When we left it was 25 degrees F..Perfect Adventure weather but soon we ran into this!

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    And this!

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    Kyle demonstrating proper ice riding techniques..

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    This is what we rode through all morning!

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    It was all absolutely beautiful! We actually did not get cold during the ride..only our hands and feet did! We stopped to warm hands about every 20 minutes..

    It warmed up later in the day and Kyle wanted to explore a two-track he had never been on before..Sure! Lets go! It turned out to be about the most difficult woods road (only a trail in the leaves in places) I had ever been on with my 690 Enduro R..This was for sure not a good big bike trail! Steep, rocky, muddy, frozen, rutted..what more could you want! I followed Kyle until he decided the trail was not technical enough and ventured off piste into the forest proper..I elected not to follow..That is when the real adventure began! :1drink

    Anyway it was a fantastic ride, where-ever-the-hell we went, Thanks to Kyle and the Farmhouse Inn for this awesome tour! I can't wait till it gets a little colder!:freaky
    #10
  11. kingrj

    kingrj Been here awhile

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    Oh..this pic...It was NOT a vulgar gesture..I was just showing Kyle that all my fingers had frozen off except one!

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    #11
  12. Baggi'tard

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

    Joined:
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    So for 2015 the Farmhouse Inn will have "follow the leader" three-day (about 525 miles) Tellico Adventure Trail rides. Here's our initial thoughts and planning. The planning thread is here..http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?p=25802232#post25802232


    • These are for guests and anybody else extra that wants to come along and just don't want the hassle of figuring it out, following the tracks, etc.
    • Initial dates are below, all coincide with three-day holiday weekends.
    • In order for us to lead the rides, we need at least four riders and at least two rooms reserved. We have a total of three rooms, with five beds that can accommodate up to nine people. So figure out a good time for you, and get your buddies lined up. If you are a single, post your interest and maybe you can get organized with others.
    • Each room will get ONE FREE Tellico Adventure Trail performance tee, others can be purchased (for instance if you stay at another location).

    1. April 3-5, 2015 (Good Friday and Easter Weekend)
    2. May 23-25, 2015 (Memorial Day Weekend)
    3. July 3-5, 2015 (Independence Day Weekend)
    4. September 5-7, 2015 (Labor Day Weekend)
    5. October 10-12 (Columbus Day Weekend)
    May and October are busy tourist months here, don't wait too long. Of course your group can plan to come and ride the TAT anytime, these are just the weekends I can plan to be available. We can always help with trip planning or even lead a day or two on other weekends if ya want.


    Come and enjoy a great time in a super-relaxing small town, have a great Farmhouse breakfast, enjoy beers on the porch or back patio/firepit, enjoy the game room, and starting next season enjoy wood-fired pizza at Tellico Grains Bakery EVERYDAY! :clap


    You can PM or post questions here, you can also call the Farmhouse Inn at 423-253-3123.


    Kyle
    #12
  13. kingrj

    kingrj Been here awhile

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    Count me in for at least two of those weekends! If house if full I will camp in garage!
    #13
  14. nightowl1352

    nightowl1352 n00b

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    That looks like a great ride. Thanks for sharing the photos.
    #14
  15. Baggi'tard

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

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    The past month of weather has been so crappy the bikes have barely been started. Even a short run gets nothing but salt and crap all over anyway. Which seems pretty amazing that the weather in January was actually so much nicer. A couple from DC was down to ride for a few days. We rode a nice 100 mile supermoto type loop one day, Dane on his F800 and Shelley on my 640 Duke II. Hopefully the weather for the big dual sport weekend in three weeks will be OK, but then we've gone from 72 to snow and single digits in one day this week.

    Always a nice view.
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    Crossing Gee Creek, no problems, even on the Duke.
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    #15
    slime likes this.
  16. kanur

    kanur cu new er

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    The wife and I are planning to ride your loops the first full week of April on her KXT 250S and my 690R :nod
    #16
  17. Baggi'tard

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

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    KLX250S? Perfect! Can't wait to hear how you do. Please post up!
    #17
  18. kanur

    kanur cu new er

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    Oops, yes KLX. She used to have an XT 225. We've been all over the area for years chasing white water but this will be the first time for the dual sport bikes.

    When do the leaves start coming out? If we get real ambitious we may even bring the big bikes, 950 ADV and 650 GS Twin.
    #18
  19. Baggi'tard

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

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    mid-April mostly I suppose. Never hurts to bring several bikes, your ADV will feel right at home with the other three KTMs. :evil
    #19
  20. Baggi'tard

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

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    We had 8 guests stay and ride much of the TAT tracks during this March Moto Madness weekend. The weather was spotty on Friday morning, but cleared up by Friday afternoon. Saturday and Sunday were cold, but clear and sunny. The one thing that was quite "amazing" was the "lack" of bikes out riding, considering we had heard there might be 500 people signed up (plus no doubt a few who were here that didn't sign up).

    Friday after breakfast we started out on FR 76 Old Furnace Road, weasled down to FR311 Buck Hwy, down past Farner and Turtletown to Kimsey Dairy and Stansbury Mountain Roads to Ducktown for lunch. We then hit F45, FR221, FR62, FR67 in Big Frog Wilderness, this would be the only road so far where we actually saw fresh motorcycle tracks. After leaving Big Frog we went up Chilhowee Mountain and FR 77 Oswald Dome roads and stopped at Webb Brothers store. It was getting late but the the guys decided to hit FR44/FR220 Starr Mountain for the last push. Amazingly this was the only place we saw other motorcycles all day, and it seemed like everybody was only on this road. Would be nice if guys learned they aren't the only ones on the road and to stay on their own side, especially around blind corners. I don't know where everybody else was riding all day but we appreciated having it ALL to ourselves!

    Saturday we headed up to Stratton Meadow and encountered snow at about 3500 feet. We were the first vehicles up North River Road after the snow had fallen too. Another day when we barely saw any other bikes. Just as I figured, the North Carolina side was closed (damnit NC, why close the FR roads all the time?) so we rode the snow covered Cherohala Skyway back down to Indian Boundary and headed over to Citico Creek and Doublecamp roads. Since there is nothing in this area to stop for a break or lunch we headed back to Tellico. After a long lunch break we headed back out to ride FR348 and 126/126C in the Bald River/Holly Flats area.

    Sunday, all but two guys headed home. The two remaining rode much of the TAT2 track, Witt Road, the McFarland and Kimsey Mtn Hwy and Smith Mtn Road area south of the Ocoee.

    Pics and more details coming...
    #20