Memorial Day Weekend Ride 2014
with Tim and Mindy
Tim and I planned this ride for a year or more.
It is hard for us to get together for a ride due to life happenings and distance.
We meet in Chattanooga, TN on Friday evening May 23, 2014. Tim and Mindy left from their home in Selmer, TN early in the day and stopped off at Look Out Mountain on the way. Dee and I left after work (5 PM) and rode up to our motel out side Chattanooga. The motel, a Day's Inn was OK but nothing special. Like most of our ride motels all we look for is a clean place to lay our head and rest to ride some more.
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The Cherohala Skyway
Day 2 of the ride (Sat, 24th) was from the motel in East Ridge, TN up to the Cherohala Skyway. The Cherohala Skyway is located in southeast Tennessee and southwest North Carolina. The Skyway connects Tellico Plains, Tennessee, with Robbinsville, North Carolina, and is about 40+ miles long. This is a great ride and should be on every riders bucket list.
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From the end of the Skyway we rode up to Robbinsville, NC for lunch and gas, then on to Deals Gap the official start of the Tail of The Dragon. Ya got to stop at the t-shirt
shop for a shirt and to watch all the folks come and go.
Running The Dragon
The video below is the entire 11 mile run of the Tail of the Dragon with all 318 curves. The bike ahead of Dee and I is Tim and Mindy and we are running a pretty good clip. The video doesn't do the curves justices.
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Smoky Mountain Harley Davidson
After doing the Dragon we headed north to Maryville, Tn to do a little shopping at Smoky Mountain Harley Davidson. The Smoky Mountain Harley Davidson is one of the largest and best dealers I have ever been to. If you are in the east Tennessee area stop by and visit them, you will not regret the extra miles. After spending some money and drinking a beer we headed for our motel in Alco, TN. The motel was ok, nothing special just clean and quite. After checking in we went out for some eats at the Texas Road House which was real good and Tim paid.
Then to bed and I was ready.
The plan for day 3 was to ride to the Smoky Mountain National Park Cads Cove entrance at Townsen, Tn and then ride the Cads Cove Loop and then go to Gatlinburg, TN. All went well until we got the the start of the Cads Cove loop. The traffic was backed up for what looked like the whole loop (11 miles). It was hot and the start and stopping was going to be a killer for Tim and Mindy on their two wheeler, so we bailed out down a gravel road (Tim's brand new Limited HD with no miles on a gravel road and he took it quite well) back the main road out of Cades Cove. The ride to Gatlinburg was a good ride.
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The Ride To Gatlinburg
The ride to Gatlinburg was by-way of a nice twisty Park road with a water fall you can stop and see from the road (not walk miles there and back) The road was shady and cool and we made good time.
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We got to Gatlinburg just as a mountain rain storm blew in, but we made it in the room before we got very wet. After waiting out the rain we headed out on foot to get a bite to eat and see the sights. Gatlinburg has a pretty neat trolley(bus) system that runs all over the area stopping at all the main tourist places. We hopped on a trolley not far from the motel and rode to the center of the main strip. As we walked around we decided to eat at Bubba Gumps. Neat place and we had fun. After eating we walked the strip stopping to ride the Skylift, which was fun but not great. Too many people all trying to see from the same small windows. Then we walked some more finding the Chairlft to the top of Crockett Mountain. The Chairlft was cool and we all enjoyed that a lot.
After walking around a little more we went back to the motel for some well needed rest. Gatlinburg is one of our go to places and we always enjoy going there. Since it is only a 4 hour ride from us here in Atlanta we go often.
Memorial Day - Day 4
All good things must come to an end they say and on Day 4 we head home, but not until we have a good breakfast at the pancake place just north of our motel. Lots of good food and easy parking. After eating Tim and Mindy went north th pick up I-40 to head west for home. Dee and I went south back over the mountains to Cherokee, NC and the south back to Atlanta.
We had a good time with Tim and Mindy and look forward to our next ride together.
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