Category Archives: Ride Reports

Deals Gap – Saturday and Sunday

Posted on by 0 comment

I did not get a super early start on Saturday, but I think I was on the road by 8:30.

I thought about taking a scenic route, but there was a strong threat of rain and I decided I would rather get settled in dry than ride in the rain.  I did take a small diversion to see my friends at Dual Sport Touring.  They have been around for a few years but this was the first time I had ever seen it in person.  It is a nice place and they are really super folks so I am glad I visited.  Rain was bearing down so I did not stay long and got back on the road.

I managed to get to the Gap without hitting any rain and also got a little riding in on a mostly dry road.  Keisha and Robert had already arrived and it was great to see them again!  Dan arrived a bit later.  I took a sunset overlook ride with Angie and Ben on their scooters and as usual it was really fun hanging out with them!

Rain was forecast for Sunday and I had forgotten to eat, so I decided to head to Robbinsville to do my grocery shopping and get a bite to eat.  The rain arrived while I was in Robbinsville, so I had a dark, rainy trip back to my room.

I stayed up late on the front porch with some other folks, waiting for the possible arrival of Mark and his friends.  They never showed so I went to bed around 2AM.


It rained pretty much all night, and when I woke up for my sunrise ride there was no need to get out of bed because I could hear the rain outside.  I slept in a bit, then showered and got some pancakes. 

Sunday was a day of rain.  MG said there was a truck stuck in Gravity Cavity,so Dan and I rode up in the rain to take a look.


The truck was certainly stuck!  We waited to see the truck get pulled out by a wrecker, but when the THP arrived they ran us off for some reason.

We rode to the overlook and sat there in the rain for a while, then returned to our rooms.

Sunday night was chili night and it was fantastically good!

Beth got a brand new CBR600 and it was delivered on Sunday.  It is a beautiful bike!


I gave my buddy Brady a hot dog so she will be my friend this week and protect me from the bears!


I am writing this at 10PM on Sunday, and so far Mark has still not shown up, and I have not heard from Pete or Johnny.  I know Mark and those guys got a late start this morning, but I would have expected to see them by now.  Still, this is not unusual behavior for Mark, so I am not worried at all.  I am sure they did not have much fun today because I imagine they spent most of the day in the rain.  The hotel was completely deserted this evening.  They closed the store at 6 and from then on it was just Dan, Keisha, Robert and myself.  No traffic.  Nothing.  The biggest entertainment we had was whenever Brady would wake up and walk somewhere.  Most times she was just waking up to poop.

Word is the chance of rain is 90% tomorrow, so there is a strong possibility that we could spend another day just watching it rain.  Dan says he is going to ride no matter what the weather is like, but I think I would rather just nap and watch it rain!

Category: Ride Reports

Deals Gap Day One!

Posted on by 0 comment

I really have not done so well with the ride reports this year.  This is my last big ride of the year, so I am going to give daily updates!

I put in a half day of work today before I hit the road.  Normally I would stay in Lexington, but something called the World Equestrian Games is going on this weekend, and the room rates are all triple their normal rates.  I decided to stay in Mason, Ohio which is just about half way to the Gap for me.

The ride started out hot and windy.  Real windy.  It sure does get tiresome riding in wind.  Eventually the wind died down and the temperature went down, but then I had rain to deal with.  I got really lucky and dodged almost all the rain, so I really can’t complain.

The traffic coming through Columbus was just miserable.  I should not be surprised because I hit Columbus right at rush hour.

Once again I am staying at a motel 6 and i am pretty happy with it.  $27.99 a night and I have a refrigerator and microwave!  yes, its nothing fancy, but it is clean and comfortable and that is all I really require from a room.  I see all these news stories about this bedbug epidemic  and that does kind of freak me out.  I saw an article that said 60% of motels in the united States have bedbugs.  I have stayed in a lot of motels over the years, and usually they are cheap motels also, but I have never seen any evidence of bedbugs, so I think they are blowing this out of proportion.  Now that I am thinking about it I am feeling crap  crawling all over me.  Time to think about something else!

My plan is to get a early start tomorrow.  you can check my Spot to see if I actually do get an early start!  I still have not decided on the rest of my route.  I will get on the road tomorrow and just do whatever I feel like doing at the time!

Category: Ride Reports

Virginia Beach

Posted on by 1 comment

Here I am, on my way to Deals Gap, but I am doing the write up of my last trip! That probably sets a new procrastination record for me!

Last week I took a four day adventure and my first stop was Virginia Beach. The trip to Virginia Beach was miserable. Rain almost the whole way there, plus I was developing a case of bronchitis and my chest hurt, I was coughing, and my nose was running. I decided to get cute and try to go around Washington DC, but that ended up biting me in the butt. A large truck crashed and caught fire, and I was stuck in a traffic jam from hell for 2 hours.

101 6769

Not only was I stuck there, but it was also raining! I still managed to make it to the house before dark, and I was so happy to get under a roof and dried off.

The next day the weather was looking great! I spent all day Sunday just hanging out on the beach, with a quick ride into Virginia Beach to see the sights.

101 6777


The accommodations were much more fancy than what I am used to, but just to insure I don’t get spoiled I had to sleep on the couch.

101 6788


The water was pretty rough, and Skid had a lot of fun trying to figure out how to ride a boogie board.

Saturday was time to leave and I had three goals for the day.

  1. Ride across the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel
  2. Ride to Delaware
  3. See Washington DC.

First was the tunnel, and it really is an engineering marvel. I had pancakes out in the middle and took lots of pictures.

101 6840


101 6844


I went to Delaware because it is the only state east of the Mississippi that I had not ridden to. I took no pictures. I will probably never return. Just not impressed.

Washington DC was pretty exciting. It is always pretty awesome to see things you have always seen in pictures.

101 6871


101 6879


101 6883


101 6886


101 6885


On the final day I decided to stop in Gettysburg on the way home. I thought it would be a half hour visit, but it was way better than I ever imagined. It is a spectacular park, and I ended up spending over four hours there, and wish I could have stayed longer!

101 6897


101 6938


101 6942


101 6947


101 6953

Category: Ride Reports

Deals Gap 8/17 – 8/23, 2009

Posted on by 0 comment

At the conclusion of Tanked 08 I continued south for a week at the Gap. Since I had only got 4 hours of sleep the previous two nights my first days goal was only Lexington, KY. This was still a difficult goal because it was very hot and I was very tired and still kind of hung over. I did make it but it was a struggle. We got to bed early and it felt nice to get to sleep in a bed in air conditioning again.

I woke in the morning not feeling perfectly refreshed, but ready to finish the last 200 miles. Nothing dramatic about the ride down until we reached the overlook where a Gold Wing trike pulled out right in front of me. The woman driving seemed to think it was funny, but I really did not see the humor in it.

We saw some of the new signs warning the trucks about the road ahead. I suspect they are working because it seemed like we saw fewer trucks on 129.

IMG 0523

IMG 0469

IMG 0467

IMG 0468

101 6002

We got a warm greeting from Dennis upon our arrival! Dennis is the pin striping guy at the Deals Gap Motorcycle resort and he is a great guy who does great work. The Gap pretty much feels like my home away from home and it is always great to get back. I did a little back and forth and as the sun set we started a campfire and cooked some dogs.

Tuesday we decided to take the boy to Cherokee where they hit the junk stores and we got some pizza. The weather was sunny and warm so we headed to the top of the Smokies. The trip started out excellent with the sighting of several Elk and then the weather went downhill quickly. Soon we were in heavy fog and rain and the view was totally obscured. We did hit some clearing on the way back down and got some spectacular views. Our route back was via Little River Road, but it turned out to be closed due to a rock slide. This was a bummer because it meant we had to get back via Pigeon Forge. It ended up being not all that bad and we were treated to several more spectacular views along the Foothills Parkway. We were followed by a tow truck on the Parkway and figured that meant there was a crash on the Gap, and sure enough when we got to 2 square there it was. I managed to get a little back and forth in and then returned for a delicious steak dinner. We saw some lightning off in the distance and I headed to the overlook to take pictures, but got scared when the winds picked up that a tree might come down and I would not be able to get back to my steak so I turned around at Picnic Tables.

IMG 0487

IMG 0488

IMG 0510

Brady is still up to her old tricks. Walking around pretending to be homeless and then people feel bad and feed her. We know better but she still ended up getting a delicious steak from us and many hot dogs.

IMG 0470

Wednesday was all about rain. The weather started out perfect, but by the time I finished my pancakes it was getting pretty dark. I got a half a pass in and got pretty wet so I headed back. It stopped raining pretty quickly and a few hours later the road was dry so I got another hour of riding in before it started raining again. Finally at around 3:30 the sun came back out and by 7:00 the road was mostly dry so we got about two hours of good riding in.

Thursday began with a forecast calling for an 80% chance of rain. It rained pretty hard late into the night on Wednesday so I really had no plans on getting a sunrise ride in due to wet roads. The truth is there has not been much reason to do a sunrise ride because I have had the road mostly to myself all week.

The weather ended up being much better than predicted, and we had more good weather than I had energy. As far as I could see everyone was riding safe and I saw no wrecks all day. We had some LEO presence but I did not see anyone getting a ticket, but like I said people seemed to be riding well so there really was no need for them to ticket anybody. I actually spent some time talking to one of them at the overlook and he was a good guy who has the same love of motorcycles we have. I ended up with a full day of riding before the rain started and once it got wet we jumped into the car and got Mexican food and ice cream in Robbinsville.

101 5975


The best news of the day was the arrival of Alex – the Arkansas guy! This time he also brought his son. It’s great to see him again! He is a fun guy to hang out with and this makes our visit all that much more fun.

101 6008

101 6010

If you run into these guys at the Gap make sure you get a chance to hang out with them.

Friday started out cloudy but we never saw any rain and we had plenty of sunshine throughout the day. I started off with my usual coffee at the overlook, but instead of returning for breakfast I went on a wildlife search. The first thing I found was a huge flock of turkeys. There were at least 30 of them, but I did not get the camera out fast enough and only got pictures of a few.

101 5986

The next thing I came across was a family of pigs. I managed to get pretty close to them and got some great pictures.

101 5991


101 5998

By the time I took the picture above she was staring to get pretty agitated with me so I decided it was time to move on.

Deer were the next animals I found.

101 5999


101 6001


All in all I would say my hunt was pretty successful! I also saw some nice Largemouth Bass, but Ben claims they are uncatchable. Next trip down I am going to see if he is right.

For most of the day it was my usual back and forth, and then tragedy struck. A car backed into my motorcycle at the overlook and knocked it over. It broke my turn signal, clutch lever, and bar end and put scratches in my fairing and saddlebag.

101 6005


Friday night we got together with Alex and his crew and Dennis and his girlfriend and had some awesome BBQ.

Saturday ended up being the best day of the week for us. The morning started out wet for us, but there was no rain in the radar so I slept in waiting for the road to dry then got a full day of riding in.

It was pretty busy and there was one bad wreck that involved the rider loosing his arm to the guard rail. I have heard nothing more on the riders status so I do hope for the best for him.

As usual we ended up with a lot of food on the last day so we grilled it up and offered it to all who wanted it. While we ate Mikey told stories and kept us all laughing.

The last day is always the saddest day because I never want to leave. It helps to know I only have to work three days and then it is off to MotoGP, and then I return home to go to work for two days and then I will return to the Gap again. The weather was pretty poor this week and it really made the trip less than perfect, but we did get a few good days in. I just figure it is payback time for the excellent weather the last two years. I will be camping over Labor Day weekend, so I may cancel the trip if there is a lot of rain in the forecast.

Category: Ride Reports

Deals Gap, May 2009

Posted on by 0 comment

Well my first big adventure of the year is over. I went to the Gap with a bunch of folks from and it was a really great time.

We had quite a bit of rain, but it really did not hurt the fun very much. The best thing about having a bunch of friends with you is that you can still have a lot of fun even if it is raining.

As always the staff and management of the Deals Gap Motorcycle Resort went out of their way to insure we all had a great time. I know I say this all the time, but these folks are just good people. They take such great care of their guests it is unreal. I have stayed in a lot of different places but I have never stayed anywhere that I felt more welcome.

I have to admit we behaved badly a few nights. What with all the rain we were left with nothing more to do than consume enormous quantities of alcohol and I hope we did not make a lot of noise and disturb any people who were trying to get some sleep. I know the one night most everybody who was spending the night was drinking with us so hopefully we did not disturb anybodys sleep.

There have been some menu additions to the Dragon Grill. They still have all the old favorites, but the new additions are great! The best thing is the Key Lime pie. It is spectacular. It is honestly the best I have ever eaten. They also have poppers on the menu. I loves me some poppers, and these are super good. They have also added cheese sticks. They are basically bread sticks with cheese inside. I think they would be better with some garlic butter on them, but they are still pretty good. There was another new desert item as well, but I don’t remember what it was because all I ate was Key Lime Pie. The controversial item for me was Sweet Potato Pancakes. I think I was pretty closed minded about them because pancakes are pretty dear to me. Cathy got an order and I tried a bite but didn’t really like them. Ben seemed so disappointed when he asked me how I liked them and I said “They’re OK”. The last morning Cathy got them again and got full after eating half of them. I finished them off and I have to admit that the more I ate the better I liked them. I suspect the first time I tried them there was not enough butter on them. I like a lot of butter. I often bring my own butter because I will use a whole stick of butter on my cakes and it must cost Brad a ton of money when I use 40 or 50 of those individual packages. Next visit I will bring a stick of butter and try them again, and I believe I will be able to say that the Sweet Potato Pancakes get the Tank Seal of Approval.

A very special friend made me lemon bars again and brought them to me fresh from her oven! That is the best food I ever get down there not just because they are delicious, but also because I appreciate the gesture so very much.

As I write this the great state of Tennessee is paving 93 pulloffs along the Gap and I just can’t express how good I think this will be! I can’t wait until they are finished! Take some time and send TDOT an email and let them know how much we appreciate how well they take care of our road at! This should greatly reduce the amount of gravel in the road and should encourage slower traffic to pull over and let faster traffic around. It will also make it far safer to pull over on our bikes to do some bike watching.

The best thing about my trip as always is getting to spend time with my friends as well as making new friends. It was great to see some of the locals that I have not seen since last year and it was great to spend some time with all my friends. I made several new friends that I hope to run into many more times!

To finish up I am just going to post up some of my favorite pictures from the trip.

107 5258


IMG 0011


IMG 0030


IMG 0035


IMG 0348


IMG 0365


IMG 0370


IMG 0378


IMG 0437


IMG 0457


IMG 0461

Category: Deals Gap, Ride Reports