TWVT to Great Smoky Mtn NP

Discussion in 'GPS Tracks - Northeast, Southeast & Florida' started by TomN, Jul 10, 2009.

  1. TomN

    TomN Long timer

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    I am looking for a good route from the bottom of the TWVT down to GSM NP, anyone have a nice backroad route? I don't want to do any freeway. I have been looking over maps but am not happy with what I have.
    Thanks Tom
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  2. intothenew

    intothenew Briar Patch Navigator

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    Have you, or would you consider the Blue Ridge Parkway?
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  3. TomN

    TomN Long timer

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    I was going to take that on the way home.
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  4. intothenew

    intothenew Briar Patch Navigator

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    mmmmk, let me try another. Burkes Garden?
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  5. TomN

    TomN Long timer

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    What's that?
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  6. intothenew

    intothenew Briar Patch Navigator

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    The highest valley in Virginia. How much time are you allowing from the southern end of the Twvt to the Smokies? And where is your destination in the Smokies?


    I am out of town, I will be home tomorrow night. I could put something rough together for you maybe Wednesday.


    Peeled Chestnut-Bishop-Burkes Garden-Mt. Rogers-Smokies?
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  7. TomN

    TomN Long timer

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    I have 9 days all together, I think I have the first 2 days down near the bottom of WV, will have to look up the town name. Other than that I have no idea where to go.
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  8. j-mac

    j-mac guess this avatar...

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    +1 on Burkes Garden. South of Bluefield, WV -- Northwest of Wytheville, VA

    BG.jpg

    There are both paved and maintained dirt in the area. Hwy 16 into Tazwell is an awesome road too.

    one more pic coming...

    j-mac
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  9. j-mac

    j-mac guess this avatar...

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    IMG_1755.JPG
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  10. j-mac

    j-mac guess this avatar...

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    (I've ridden all on a dl650...)

    After a quick in/out from Burkes, sneak west to Tazwell and hit 16 south into Marion, VA. If you want dirt, head south out of Burkes and work over to Marion.

    Mt. Rogers has good roads. Take your pic -- just head south to 194.

    Catch 194 on the south side of Mt. Rogers, then head west/south on 88. Take that down to a quick jog on 421, and catch Hwy 194 over to Elk Park.

    Work your way down to Roan Mtn and catch 143 south. 143 turns into 261 to Bakersville, NC.

    Head west on 226 for just a bit and take 197 south (it'll have a bit of twisty dirt south of 19 - I did it no problem on my strom).

    If you have time, head up 25 to Hot Springs, and catch 208 south. 208 is quite nice. After a bit, take a right on Meadow Fork Road, which turns into Harmon Den Road. Again, dirt on Harmon Den.

    Harmon Den crosses under I-40. Take it into TN where it changes to "Hwy" 32. 32 goes around to 321, to the north entrance of the GSMNP.

    At that point, try not to get lost in the crowds of Gatinburg...

    Hope this helps.

    j-mac
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  11. TomN

    TomN Long timer

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    Sweet thanks! :clap
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  12. TomN

    TomN Long timer

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    Maped that out, looks very nice, is it better to go around the bottom of the park and avoid Gatlinburg?

    I want to check out the Dragon as long as I am down there. Any other tips on good roads or dirt in the area?
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  13. j-mac

    j-mac guess this avatar...

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    I'd assumed that you wanted to arrive at the north entrance to GSMNP, and go into the park. If not, there are other routes to get you to Deal's Gap.

    I know you said that you'd probably take the BRP on your return trip, so I'll avoid suggestions that include that road -- just make sure you ride it. It is great.

    To get to Deal's Gap, using most of the prior route I gave:

    Coming south out of Hot Springs, you could stay on 209 down to Lake Junaluska, then catch 19 (sorry, a small bit of highway) towards Bryson City. Theres a good BBQ place there, and you could check out the "Road to Nowhere" as a quick excursion (look for Hwy 1364 and follow it to the tunnel).

    Out of Bryson City, it would be another short stint on 19 to Hwy 28. 28 north (a nice road) will take you right to the Gap. You're likely to have less Gap traffic during the week -- it does get crowded during the weekends.

    Since you're in the area, and if you have time, the Cherohala Skyway is a most excellent road -- and it has dirt options that are documented extensively on this board. From the Gap, take Hwy 129 south towards Robbinsville (look for Fontana Dam on your left as you head south), and catch Joyce Kilmer Rd (1134?) to Hwy 143 west. The paved option is 143. The dirt option is NF-81. Perhaps you could do paved out, and dirt back? Both are good options.

    Telico Plains, TN is the western terminus of the Skyway. Another place to eat, and there are campgrounds in that area.

    Returning, you could simply make your way back to Cherokee, NC and catch the BRP and take that most of the way home.

    Hope that helps. Sounds like you have the makings for a wonderful trip.

    j-mac
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  14. intothenew

    intothenew Briar Patch Navigator

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    Sorry so long getting back. j-mac has you covered. The only thing I can add is if you were to take the Logan connector on west I have track logs to take you into the Breaks Interstate Park. You can then meander your way down the VA-KY border.
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  15. TomN

    TomN Long timer

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    Thanks all, I think I have a pretty good route down, now just need to work on the wife!
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  16. j-mac

    j-mac guess this avatar...

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    :evil <now just need to work on the wife...>

    Is that what the kids are calling it these days?





    Enjoy your trip.

    j-mac
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  17. ktmMike

    ktmMike Long timer

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    Hey Chip!
    How's it goin'?
    I've been all over Burkes Garden.
    What an unusual place. If you look at it on a topo map, It's like a crater or something with one open place to the north, and 2 other roads coming over the rim into the valley, one from the south and one from the east. All 3 roads are good.
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