Tail of the Dragon

Discussion in 'Trips & Events' started by DeeBee, Aug 31, 2016.

  1. Lint

    Lint Member

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    Get a Spot satellite emergency beacon. No cell signal needed.
     
  2. 34468 Randy

    34468 Randy Secret Insider

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    Ya. I gotta get one of those if I continue with my hiking. At my age, getting back is always going to be an issue I have to consider.
     
  3. V4toTour

    V4toTour New Member

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    Hundreds might be a bit of an exaggeration, but yeah... there's nothing "unique" about the dragon as far as mountain roads go other than the shenanigans and injuries. I will give it that the pavement is extremely well maintained though.

    As a ride experience, it's actually not that great. There's no grand vistas or amazing scenery. It's just a twisty road through the woods. As far as relentless corners for sport riding goes, it's no different than the many, MANY more miles you'll find in the mountain passes of SoCal. At least those aren't crawling with cops and traffic.

    Most of the folks who view it as some sort of motorcycling revelation probably haven't done the amount of touring you have. So you have to take their impressions with a grain of salt.
     
  4. 34468 Randy

    34468 Randy Secret Insider

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    The destination may be good or bad but the journey will never be disappointing. Even riding the flats of northern ND and southern Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta has its own pleasures if you allow your mind to take in what's around you. Keep your visor down though.
     
  5. Gator

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    The Dragon is 1st and 2nd gear for almost the entire ride.
     
  6. DeeBee

    DeeBee New Member

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    Definitely gonna check out some of the more technical and vacant local roads, once I get my confidence and skills built up, I will most likely go visit deals gap and surrounding areas. I was raised in central WV about an hour or so north of where John Nash was born and raised.
    Would love to go back there to ride, as roads are empty at times.
    Think I will play it smart and stay away from areas highly likely to put me in dangerous situations, at least until I am a better rider.
     
  7. V4toTour

    V4toTour New Member

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    That stretch of 129 is only as technical as you make it out to be. It can just as easily be a relaxing ride as it can be a ride where you're pushing cornering skills. If your idea is to attack it as a time trial on your first visit... that's a really REALLY bad idea.

    With the exception of other riders, the dragon isn't that sketchy of a road. I can think of plenty of other roads with less forgiving corners with absolutely no runoff between the road and a rock face or sheer cliff.
     
  8. 34468 Randy

    34468 Randy Secret Insider

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    Wise. You should live to be very old and wrinkly keeping that position.

    That is where many riders get seriously injured and sometime die. They push themselves well beyond their capabilities in an area where there are many other factors working against them. So often it is our younger people who are this way the most but not always. Some old farts should know better too.

    You only die once. There is no "replay" button.
     
  9. JIMLARCH

    JIMLARCH New Member

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    Looks like the guys riding a Triumph, but pretty much sums up the riding ability of most of the Harley riders there. Been going yearly for over 10 years and have found lately that I stand more chance of being hit by a Harley than doing something and crashing myself.
     
  10. JIMLARCH

    JIMLARCH New Member

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    No offence, but don't the floorboards touch down once you're 3 degrees past vertical? Fast on a Harley with floorboards is about 30% of the speed of a good Rider on a sportbike, at the Gap.
     
  11. JIMLARCH

    JIMLARCH New Member

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    A lot of good advice!
     
  12. JIMLARCH

    JIMLARCH New Member

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    Can't agree with you that it's not that great a road. Why, because it doesn't have great views? I think you are missing the point. Anyone who is a decent rider, who rides a sportbike, loves this road. Sure if you ride a cruiser I think it's a pointless ride. I've ridden in different parts of the world, and there is nothing like this 11 miles with 318 turns. I defy anyone who has ever ridden this road with any gusto, to say it's just another road.
     
  13. V4toTour

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    So you've ridden all the mountain roads, everywhere? :noidea: I never said it wasn't a fun sport bike road, what I did say was that it isn't special or unique other than the stupidity that goes on there.

    Forget the world, have you done this stretch of highway?

    https://www.google.com/maps/dir/Qua...f9e9bea258ecc!2m2!1d-118.8181495!2d36.1302265


    That's just one example for SoCal. There's no photographers. I've never seen a cop. There's no local board of tourism counting every slight bend in the road perpetuating a myth that it's the twistiest stretch of highway on the planet. There's no t-shirts or stickers to buy.
     
  14. 34468 Randy

    34468 Randy Secret Insider

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  15. V4toTour

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    Not much Gopro out there on the road, but here's a quick clip of some folks heading down the mountain. I'd guess some where at the midway point.

    [video=youtube;BSveYbkN3EM]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BSveYbkN3EM[/video]
     
  16. DeeBee

    DeeBee New Member

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    Live to be old and wrinkly......maybe I should rethink my risk taking and give my adventurous side a little longer leash. Lol not sure I am looking forward to being old and wrinkly, then again don't want to be old and crippled or worse yet "young" and crippled.

    Surely living in the Appalachian foothills and in a valley surrounded by mountains on all sides, I can find some good challenging roads away from traffic.
    I can already think of three different mountain roads that are well maintained rarely alot of traffic.

    The climb up lookout mountain, to covenant college and back down the other side.

    Raccoon mountain going to The TVA reservoir

    Up and across Fort mountain to Ellijay.

    Funny I know these roads because that are routes I take to local camping, hiking, and off road ATV and single track riding locations.


    All are two lane roads with truck lanes on the steeps, most have Esses and switch backs as well as some nice little straights and sweepers, should be alot of fun and good experience, and all right in my backyard.

    It sounds like going to the dragon, seeing the bikes and cars, as well as watching the idiots, could be alot of fun, who knows might meet a few decent people as well, not like there is a Ton of Red and white with blue VF7F bikes running about. Don't think labor day weekend (if my bike was ready) would be the time to go though.

    I am so psyched to get to riding, I spent my younger years and thousands of miles pushing common cars to the ragged limit. And always preferred lighter and well balanced cars. Now I finally trust my sound thinking vs. thrill seeking enough to move up to street bikes. It took 20 years with a license and nearly 40 years on the ol' ticker, it really is a big step for me.


    Sound thinkin, safety, mention of things like ATGATT, and learn to counter steer, which I have found here may well save my life, and will certainly help me enjoy the sport. Ended up with a early vffer by chance, same for finding vfrworld, I seriously doubt I will ever regret either

    Regards and many thanks
    db
     
  17. 3.0charlie

    3.0charlie New Member

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    Damn. With the 'topography and elevation' option on, that's one heck of a ride! 1200' to 7200'...
     
  18. V4toTour

    V4toTour New Member

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    It's up there. I took this from Dome Rock I think. A little bit past Ponderosa, you'll see signs turn down a dirt road.

    [​IMG]

    Turn to the left you'll see the Needles
    [​IMG]
     
  19. James Bond

    James Bond Member

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    There are two short straights where 70 to nearly 80 are very doable on a VFR. Been there, done that, braked and downshifted hard then went on down the road. That is third gear riding. For smooth, quick twisty riding, high rpm's isn't really necessary on Deal's Gap. People watching at the store has become the most fun part of The Gap now.
     
  20. Gator

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    You don't get out of first? lol
     
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