Saturday, November 6, 2010

ADV Old's Cool Fall Rally - 2010

On October 15 - 17, 2010 I attended the ADV Rider Old's Cool Fall Rally in Tellico Plains, TN. It was the usual group of inmates minus one or two regulars. The weather was perfect during the day, but it got quite cold at night. Below is a photo of Heidi with frost on her.

On Saturday I rode to the Ocoee River where the river events of the Atlanta Olympics were held. This area is still used for whitewater events and weekend rafters.

It was really great to see old friends and make a few new ones. I guess that is what these events are all about.

This will probably be my last event of the year. I have sent my rain fly in to North Face to be refurbished for the upcoming season. In June my wife and I will fly to Japan to visit our son and in July I hope to ride to Labrador and Newfoundland. That is a trip I had hoped to make this year, but other things got in the way. Please check back ever so often or subscribe via RSS. I do know for sure there are a few events planned for the spring. Have a safe winter and I hope I see you on the road next spring!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Cold Night on Cold Mountain

I spent the night of October 1 at the foot of Cold Mountain in Cruso, NC. I took the airhead and my winter equipment. I though my sleeping bag was warmer than it proved to be that night! The temperature got into the mid 30's (3-5 Celsius). I was terribly cold during the night. I left my cotton socks on during the night and I believe that was my mistake. I would have had warmer feet without the socks. The next morning I had to wait for the sun to up over the mountain before I could cook my breakfast of sausage and eggs with coffee. After packing up I rode over to check out Balsam Lake in the Nanthahala National Forest. I found the lake although the directional signs had been removed thanks to roadwork going on under our leaders stimulus plan.
The lake was quite low but it was a beautiful setting. There is a lodge where rooms can be reserved for weekends and holidays.
After visiting the lake I set off for home. I seemed to have caught a cold from the night of camping and had a runny nose. I hate riding with a helmet when my nose is running!

The weekend of October 15-17 is the ADV Rider's Old School Fall Meeting in Tellico Plains, TN. That will probably be my last outing of the year. We shall see!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Ride the Blue Ridge Rally 2010

The Knob Mountain N.C. Motorcycle Chapter (Knobbies) hosted a great BMW rally in Morganton, NC. The weather was beautiful on Friday and Saturday. I did ride home Sunday morning in a downpour, however.

On Saturday the GS managed to find more gravel roads in Western North Carolina. The photo above was shot in Gragg, NC. This is a small community at the intersection of some gravel roads. Below is a closeup of the sign.

I rode to Mortimer and discovered a small general store in the middle of nowhere on one of these gravel roads. No, I did not hear any banjos playing anywhere!

The rally itself was held at Catawba Meadows, a city park operated by the city of Morganton, NC. The site itself was beautiful. The site was donated to the club by the city to help tourism in the area. I won a gift certificate to a local restaurant as a door prize so I know I will return!

Next weekend I plan on making an overnight trip to Cruso and on Saturday check out Balsam Lake. Check back next week!

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Horizons Unlimited Traveller's Meeting - 2010

The weekend of September 10 - 12, 2010 found me at the annual Horizons Unlimited Traveller's Meeting in Stecoah, NC. Horizons Unlimited is a group of international motorcycle tourists and many presentations are given on topic ranging from border crossing to how to stay healthy on the road. This event is only about 80 miles from my home so I try to make it every year. Saturday was soggy one and well spent by listening to several presentations.

This year I was most impressed by Ileana LaTorre and Efrain Martinez. These two have started a charity trip called Moto Nomadas. They will ride from Charleston, SC around South America raising money and volunteers to help educate the street children on Central and South America. Please visit there web site for more details. Just when I seem to lose hope in the current generation a couple of kids like these step up and restore my faith. There is hope!!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Labor Day Weekend in Cruso

Over the Labor Day weekend, September 3-5, 2010, I camped with the GS in Cruso, NC. On Saturday I rode to the Nanthala National Forest to ride a little gravel. While walking on a swinging bridge over the river I saw an entire family of deer watering in this beautiful countryside.

It was an excellent day on the GS in its natural habitat. Although I am not that comfortable on gravel the GS loved it.

On Monday I rode the R80RT to Smoky Mountain Knife Works in Sevierville, TN to do a little knife shopping. It was another beautiful day, but no photos of this. I enjoyed the riding too much!!

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Ride to Roan Mountain

On Saturday, August 28, I rode the GS to Roan Mountain State Park in Tennessee just to eat a picnic lunch. On the way there I rode through some interesting localities. I love the name of the town of Loafer's Glory, NC. I also stopped in Kona where Charlie Silvers is buried.

Charlie was caught cheating by his wife and she killed him and chopped him up into pieces. You can't tell from the photo but Charlie is buried in three separate graves. There is one headstone and three foot stones. As they found pieces of Charlie scattered about the countryside they would bury them in a new grave. Charlie's wife, Frankie, was the first woman hung in North Carolina.

In this part of the country we remember ALL of our war dead.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Weekend in Cruso

I spent August 13-15 in Cruso, NC camping at the Blue Ridge Motorcycle Campground. Friday evening was spent relaxing with members of the Time Warp Vintage Motorcycle Club from Knoxville, TN.

On Saturday I rode to Oconee Station in South Carolina. Oconee Station was used as a meeting place for the Cherokee and British in the early part of the the 19th century.

My next planned trip is to the Horizons Unlimited USA East Traveller's Meeting in Stecoah, NC next month. Until then, Ride safe!!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Kickstand Lodge

August 6-8 I spent camping at Kickstand Lodge in Stecoah, NC. Kickstand Lodge has become a favorite hang out of mine while living in North Carolina. The owners and customers have become like family. It also serves as a good retreat from my weekday life as a teacher. Stecoah is located in extreme western North Carolina and has some of the best riding roads in the United States. Some of my favorites in the area are US 74 through the Nanthahala Gorge, Forest Service Road 711 (when I am on my GS) and the Cherohala Skyway. Yellowcreek Road and NC 28 leading to the Tail of the Dragon are other favorites. The Tail of the Dragon is among my least favorite roads in the area. On a nice weekend it is filled with young teens on sport bikes seeing how fast they can ride the 318 curves in 11 miles. It is really like a circus with all the tricked out bikes and color matched leathers.

I took advantage of the roads and road FS 711 and NC 28 to Fonatana Dam on Saturday. Below are some photos from the days ride.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Cades Cove, Tennessee

On Wednesday, August 4, I thought I would take the airhead to over to Cades Cove. What a mistake. For those of you that don't know Cades Cove is an 11 mile, one-way loop in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The problem is the traffic. It was over 90 degrees Fahrenheit and the old R80RT is an air cooled engine. At times there would be a three mile back up due to a deer feeding on the side of the road. I swear! City people!!

Once I finally got off the loop (it took 2 hours to go 11 miles!) I headed for Clingman's Dome. Higher Altitude = Lower Temperature

Sunday, July 25, 2010

I'm Back!!!!!!!!

I realize I have not posted anything for about two months. I made a great three week trip out west with my wife in our little red Toyota Yaris. We were able to visit my family in Texas on our way out. We made a tour of the National Parks and saw Mesa Verde, Arches, Canyonlands, Grand Tetons, Yellowstone, Little Bighorn Battle Field and many other fantastic sites.

Last weekend (July 16-19) I managed to get a little jaunt in to Willville Motorcycle Camp in Meadows of Dan, VA. I ran into a few acquaintances and we had a good time despite the rain. There was a wedding, wine tasting, and a few water crossings made in a Honda Accord. It was one of those "you had to be there" things.

I do have a few events planned for the upcoming months. In September Horizons Unlimited is having its USA East meeting in Stecoah, NC. I will be there and give a full report. That goes for the ADV Old's Cool Fall Rally in Tellico Plains, TN as well. That event will happen in October.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Eastern Rendezvous, 2010 Edition

Last weekend I attended the ADV Eastern Rendezvous in Laurel Springs, NC. On the way there I rode through a terrible hail storm just after leaving Boone. Sorry, no pictures. I was too busy concentrating on keeping upright. The rally itself was another success put on by Rick, the Party Boss.
I did not ride at all on Saturday but I just hung around the camping area and caught up with some old friends. Here are a few photos from the Rendezvous.

A fellow named Chuck rode this from New Orleans, LA!!! He even got a speeding ticket on the way. He was doing 45 in a 35 zone. Oh yeah, and he was pulling a trailer!!

Learning how to make hobo scallops.

The camping area for the Rendezvous.

One of the landmarks in Laurel Springs, NC.

Another reminder for why I live here!

Well, I cannot wait for next year's rendezvous. There may not be much to post for about the next month. I will be headed to Grand Tetons and Arches NPs with my wife in a car. Be sure that I will make a longer trip. My school system has decided to start school early and this may kill my trip to Labrador. It is too early to tell now. I guess you will just have to check back and see!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Weekend Getaway!

This past weekend I rode to Cruso, NC to spend a couple of nights at the Blue Ridge Motorcycle Campground. I had to take the long way around due to fallen trees on the Blue Ridge Parkway. The winter damage has closed a thirty mile stretch of the Parkway between Asheville and Mount Pisgah.

On Saturday I rode to the Nantahala Gorge to try and photograph some rafters. The wind blew some sand in my eye and blinded me for about 45 minutes. My eye finally cleared up enough to ride and I rode to the next country store and bought a bottle of water to try and flush the particle out of my eye. While there I met a young hippie type fellow named Chris who offered me a couple of drops of Visine. Now why would a hippie have Visine??!??

After arriving back at the campground a weather front move through setting us up for a windy and very cold night. Sunday morning was so cold I decided to eat breakfast at home.

Next week is the Eastern Rendezvous in Laurel Springs, NC. Check back for the trip report!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

ADV Old's Cool Rally at the Minner!

I did not arrive at this rally until Saturday, April 24. It seems that the President of the United States decided to vacation in Asheville, NC and that really snarled traffic in the area. I took my students on a field trip and the bus got caught up in the presidential traffic jam causing us to arrive at our school late.

I arrived at Quiverin' Minner, TN on Saturday after riding through a thunderstorm all the way from Tellico Plains, TN. Most of the crowd was already there. After making initial greetings and what not I got on my bike to ride to the camping spot. The dreaded EWS! error popped up on my display and I began to sweat a little. I turned the key off and back on and everything seemed to be fine. I set up camp and met with the rest of the crew.

That night we had RAIN!!!! I'm glad we had the Minner to stay dry in. After an "all you can eat" barbecue dinner the place started rockin'! This was red neck central for the next few hours. It was a blast meeting some of the locals and observing their mating rituals! I finally crawled into my tent and slept well in the pouring rain.

Sunday morning I packed up and headed for a Waffel House for breakfast. I once again had EWS! errors but managed to get home. Since arriving home I cannot get the error to reoccur. This weekend I will be staying close to home, but check back in a couple of weeks. I will be riding to Buzzard Bottom or perhaps just over to the Blue Ridge Motorcycle Campground. You just never know!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Quiverin' Minner Recce Run

In two weeks the Adventure Riders Old's Cool gang will be having a get together in Quiverin' Minner, TN. It's really a marina on Watts Bar Lake near Decatur, TN. I had never been there before so I decided to make a weekend ride and recon the place. I camped at Hunt's Lodge in Tellico Plains, TN. This was my first time to stay there. I is a really nice place with good folks running it.

I had Friday off so after riding to East Tennessee I just rode around and enjoyed the beautiful weather after a long hard winter. In Reliance, TN I came up on this old abandoned Baptist church. I love "Southern Architecture", unpainted wood with a rock foundation. I am actually doing a photographic essay on this called "Southern Ruins". You can see this on my photographic web site in the Project gallery. This particular church was the Hiwasee Union Baptist Church.

On Saturday I rode to the Quiverin' Minner. I think this is going to be a fun little get together if we have decent weather. Below are some pictures of the "Minner".

This was only the first ride of the season. This year's plans include a long ride to Labrador and New Foundland to complete my quest to ride in all Canadian Provinces. This should be in July after a trip out west to see Yellowstone, Grand Tetons and Arches National Parks. That trip will be made by car with my frau.

Check back in a couple of weeks to see how the Old's Cool Rally at the Quiverin' Minner went!!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Spring has Sprung!

Well, it has been a long hard winter in Asheville, NC this year. Yesterday was the first day of spring and I performed some of the annual maintenance on the GS. I am planning on making my first camping trip in two weeks. This year I will make a trip out west (but in a car) with my wife to Grand Tetons and Arches National Parks. There will be some photos for sure on my photography web site. I am planning on making a major motorcycle trip to Labrador and New Foundland, Canada in July. I have purchased a netbook to help with keeping up posts while on the road. Check back often to see my progress!!

Ride Safe!!!!

Monday, January 11, 2010

International Motorcylce Show, 2010 Edition

On Saturday January 9, 2010 I attended the International Motorcycle Show in Greenville, SC. There were a few new bikes to see, but all in all, I had seen it all before. I am really not in the market for any new motorcycle gear but it was kind of neat to be among fellow riders in the middle of winter. Here are a few photos from the show. Enjoy and let's all hope for an early spring!!!