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Thread: Back of the Dragon

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  1. #1
    Old man in the mountains osbornk's Avatar
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    Back of the Dragon

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Some of you who attended the MOA Rally in Johnson City are familiar with the 32 miles of Rt 16 between Marion, Va and Tazewell, Va. It is a better ride than the Tail of the Dragon but without the publicity. A group has gotten together to get the message out in a shameless attempt to attract tourist dollars and show our little part of motorcycle heaven. We are in the very early stages but the website is http://backofthedragon.com/

    Ken
    'You can say what you want about the South, but I almost never hear of anyone wanting to retire to the North.

  2. #2
    not so retired henzilla's Avatar
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    Oh yeah!
    Helen will laugh when she watches the youtube video..."there was scenery?" will no doubt be spoken . She passed some "slower than posted guys" who wouldn't ease over for the first few turns (I remember the thread about all of that behavior)...who saw the ponytail fly by and got type A afterwards and tried to intimidate her for a few turns over their comfort level...they never did catch her I passed them after their shoulders dropped in defeat. A group of Sportbike guys gave her a big thumbs up when we reached the end and a stop sign ...they had passed both of us about five minutes before the stop. Took them a few corners to get by her.

    Anyways one of our favorite stretches that week. There are many out that way for sure.
    Good luck in y'alls venture.
    Steve Henson
    SABMWRA MOA Club#62's Flat Fixer/ current forum moderator
    It's not the breaths you take, but the moments that take your breath away-D.Dillon/G. Strait

  3. #3
    Earache
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    I'm in. I've been meaning to get down there and will do so some time in May.
    Plan on staying in the area, eating there and bringing what little cash I 'd spend to a place that I'd like to see succeed. I'll try to drag a few friends along with me.

    Thanks for the link!

  4. #4
    Old man in the mountains osbornk's Avatar
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    The Youtube video shows the straighter parts of the road. Hairpin turns don't film very well.
    'You can say what you want about the South, but I almost never hear of anyone wanting to retire to the North.

  5. #5
    not so retired henzilla's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by osbornk View Post
    The Youtube video shows the straighter parts of the road. Hairpin turns don't film very well.
    That is where Helen saw me going above her head at one point as she was glancing at the valley below on the other side of the road and turned back for the corner...she says those are real hairpins in her book...not the ones like in CO,WY or MT with a lot of space between opposing lanes. Shift down, lean in and gas it!
    Steve Henson
    SABMWRA MOA Club#62's Flat Fixer/ current forum moderator
    It's not the breaths you take, but the moments that take your breath away-D.Dillon/G. Strait

  6. #6
    Old man in the mountains osbornk's Avatar
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    Local officials and motorcycle enthusiasts had a meeting Friday to discuss our project and make people aware of our jewel in the rough. I am making maps of several other good rides in the area so folks can spend several days in the area and have a new ride every day.

    Everyone was very positive except one woman who occasionally drives Rt 16 because of her work. She was complaining about being passed on Rt 16 at "about a million miles per hour" and the dangers of the road. I didn't really understand until she made a comment near the end of the meeting. She said she was proud that she could drive across the three mountains on Rt 16 and not use her brakes.

    A 13 year old about 60 miles down the road has a talent far beyond his years. He did this at video at 12. He does some unusual things near the end. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i5SNf...eature=related
    'You can say what you want about the South, but I almost never hear of anyone wanting to retire to the North.

  7. #7
    look out!!! Visian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by osbornk View Post
    Everyone was very positive except one woman who occasionally drives Rt 16 because of her work. She was complaining about being passed on Rt 16 at "about a million miles per hour" and the dangers of the road. I didn't really understand until she made a comment near the end of the meeting. She said she was proud that she could drive across the three mountains on Rt 16 and not use her brakes.

    Ken - good onya!

    may i make a suggestion?

    please elevate this message to the people who drive the road every day:

    Please use turnouts to allow others to pass.

    i truly believe that if more motorcycle-related organizations gave this message higher visibility, it would solve a lot of problems.

    ian
    Go soothingly through the grease mud, as there lurks the skid demon.
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    '67 Trail 90 || '86 R80 G/SPD+ || '00 1150 GS || '06 HP2e

  8. #8
    Small road corner junkie pffog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by henzilla View Post
    That is where Helen saw me going above her head at one point as she was glancing at the valley below on the other side of the road and turned back for the corner...she says those are real hairpins in her book...not the ones like in CO,WY or MT with a lot of space between opposing lanes. Shift down, lean in and gas it!
    The US Rockies DO not have hairpins, there are a few in the east. But I only know one paved switchback in the US. If you can negotiate a corner in 3rd gear or higher, it is not a hairpin, if you have to use 2nd, with a lot of clutch modulation, or first, it might be a switchback.

    Too many engineers by the time most of the current western roads were built, the east has some older roads designed by horses. Now go to Europe, and that is where the goats did the surveying, and you need to do a "Linda Blair" head swivel to look for oncoming traffic

  9. #9
    not so retired henzilla's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pffog View Post
    The US Rockies DO not have hairpins, there are a few in the east. But I only know one paved switchback in the US. If you can negotiate a corner in 3rd gear or higher, it is not a hairpin, if you have to use 2nd, with a lot of clutch modulation, or first, it might be a switchback.

    Too many engineers by the time most of the current western roads were built, the east has some older roads designed by horses. Now go to Europe, and that is where the goats did the surveying, and you need to do a "Linda Blair" head swivel to look for oncoming traffic
    It seems to be a common term used for any change in direction ...we call them nice sweepers. Had lot's of folks warning us of the dangerous "switchbacks" on Beartooth Pass...we got to Red Lodge and she was giving me the

    Helen says if you can see dirt or grass in between the lanes...it's not a switchback. Some of the turns we found in W Virginia/NC required first or second to make the uphill/downhill swing. Arkansas has a few in this class as well.
    Steve Henson
    SABMWRA MOA Club#62's Flat Fixer/ current forum moderator
    It's not the breaths you take, but the moments that take your breath away-D.Dillon/G. Strait

  10. #10
    Moondog
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    Quote Originally Posted by pffog View Post
    The US Rockies DO not have hairpins, there are a few in the east. But I only know one paved switchback in the US. If you can negotiate a corner in 3rd gear or higher, it is not a hairpin, if you have to use 2nd, with a lot of clutch modulation, or first, it might be a switchback.

    Too many engineers by the time most of the current western roads were built, the east has some older roads designed by horses. Now go to Europe, and that is where the goats did the surveying, and you need to do a "Linda Blair" head swivel to look for oncoming traffic
    According to who?

  11. #11
    just hangin' out 2bikemike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by osbornk View Post
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Some of you who attended the MOA Rally in Johnson City are familiar with the 32 miles of Rt 16 between Marion, Va and Tazewell, Va. It is a better ride than the Tail of the Dragon but without the publicity. A group has gotten together to get the message out in a shameless attempt to attract tourist dollars and show our little part of motorcycle heaven. We are in the very early stages but the website is http://backofthedragon.com/

    Ken

    I drove a tractor trailer across their once. Not even half way across I was regretting that decision!
    keep it light enough to travel.....
    2013 GL1800 Goldwing
    '81 Honda CB650 Custom

  12. #12
    Old man in the mountains osbornk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2BikeMike View Post
    I drove a tractor trailer across their once. Not even half way across I was regretting that decision!
    Most don't make it half way. If they come from the I-81 end, they generally get stuck in the third curve on the first mountain. The wreckers and state police get great joy in punishing violators of the warning signs.
    'You can say what you want about the South, but I almost never hear of anyone wanting to retire to the North.

  13. #13
    RSPENNACHIO
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    Last July my brother and I made that ride. We were started in WV and rode south through Tazewell ultimatly to stop in Bristol. When we stopped an Hungry Mother State Park we both said this is every bit as good as deals gap, maybe better because there is less traffic. The one thing I specifically remember was the approch to the base of the mountain (shortly after leaving Tazewell). The foilage was like a huge carpet. My description does is no justice. But it was absolutly beautiful to look at.

    I like stickers. Are there any available yet?

  14. #14
    RSPENNACHIO
    Guest
    yep, there are stickers. In my mind it is sacrilege to order one and have it mailed. I must now ride to Tazwell and get one in person.

    My Aunt Judy lives there (actually she's in Pounding Mill) so free lodging for me.

  15. #15
    Old man in the mountains osbornk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rspennachio View Post
    Last July my brother and I made that ride. We were started in WV and rode south through Tazewell ultimatly to stop in Bristol. When we stopped an Hungry Mother State Park we both said this is every bit as good as deals gap, maybe better because there is less traffic. The one thing I specifically remember was the approch to the base of the mountain (shortly after leaving Tazewell). The foilage was like a huge carpet. My description does is no justice. But it was absolutly beautiful to look at.

    I like stickers. Are there any available yet?
    You were looking at Kudzu that has taken over the north side of the first mountain. The stuff grows about a foot a day in the summer and covers everything.
    'You can say what you want about the South, but I almost never hear of anyone wanting to retire to the North.

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