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Discussion Starter #1
Happy Memorial Day,

I am planning a trip to Florida with a few stops along the way to see friends - taking the long way around. I plan to make a quick trip to Little Rock first for lunch with my sister then on to Memphis to stay with a friend (I30-I40). That leg will not be very scenic but its the second and third leg that I look most forward to. From Memphis to Chattanooga I will take US64 and stay with a friend there. This, I am told, is a beautiful ride and Google maps say it will take 6 hours (326mi) so bright and early start for me if I want to take frequent stops. From Chattanooga to Hendersonville, NC staying on US64 will take me 4 1/2 hours then to Charlotte, NC via US74 two more hours so its about the same as the second leg of the trip. Will stay with friends in Charlotte for a few days before heading to Savannah, GA to have lunch with a couple of friends (Not sure what route to take yet) then on to Lake Yale near Lisbon, FL for a week.

What I want to ask is what I could keep an eye out for on US64 between Memphis and Hendersonville, NC. I am really excited about this route and would like feedback of places to look out for and things to avoid.

Dale
 

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For your planning purposes, I find Google maps always over estimates driving time. I often find a half hour plus calculation discrepancy between Google and Garmin on a six hour ride, and Garmin is usually spot on to actual.

Good luck. Have a nice trip. Sounds like a blast.
 

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Thanks, I was looking at Motorcycleroads.com found it resourceful. One of the pictures of Ocoee made me realize I had driven down there during my first year of college in 1986. Will be paying more attention this time.

I will get a Airhawk2, a net to hold my suitcase on the passenger seat, crampbuster, and mount a GPS on the handlebar, but other than that I don't believe there is anything else I will add to it. Always been a minimalist.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Recommend keeping both eyes on the road :)
Har Har I am looking forward to the twisties. Will be riding the Twisted Sisters last week of June before a weekend conference in San Antony. My only hope is the rain lets up before then.
 

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[

I will get a Airhawk2, a net to hold my suitcase on the passenger seat, crampbuster, and mount a GPS on the handlebar, but other than that I don't believe there is anything else I will add to it. Always been a minimalist.[/QUOTE]

You will be very happy with an Airhawk2 cushion. If you got the time and money a Utoipa backrest and aThrottle Lock cruise control would greatly enhance the trip.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
You will be very happy with an Airhawk2 cushion. If you got the time and money a Utoipa backrest and aThrottle Lock cruise control would greatly enhance the trip.
I actually will put my overhead-sized suitcase on my passenger seat and place a cushion behind my back to be a backrest for me. It worked very well on my last long trip. I do want to investigate a good throttle lock CC but the rubber strap I have now seems to do the job.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Made the first leg of the trip yesterday from Dallas to Pine Bluff, AR. Mainly went through country roads, and it was really pleasant. Notes:

The Bestem Burgman bag was okay after quite a few modifications and did the job but barely. The left side buckle broke off half-way through. The zippers proved to be awkward to handle with the floppy fabric.

Averaged 59 mpg on the first fill up from Buc'ees in Terrell to Atlanta and 64 mpg from Exxon in Atlanta, TX to Pine Bluff. The bike ran a steady 60-70 mph and 75 on the Interstate.

The Airhawk 2 was great, but even that could not be perfect after 7 hours in the saddle. My left knee also began to feel restless and I started dreaming of one of those foot pegs.

I pulled over to walk around at a gas station in Arkansas and thought I pushed the stand down and realized it did not go down too late. The loaded bike wanted to lie down and my weary legs could not resist. The Givi windsheld scratched on the side but not any serious damage anywhere as I laid it down slowly. had to undo the luggage to pull it up with a little (lot) of help from a good Samaritan.

Tomorrow heading to Memphis. Cannot seem to be able to add photos here. It only asks for a web link.
 

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I pulled over to walk around at a gas station in Arkansas and thought I pushed the stand down and realized it did not go down too late. The loaded bike wanted to lie down and my weary legs could not resist. The Givi windsheld scratched on the side but not any serious damage anywhere as I laid it down slowly. had to undo the luggage to pull it up with a little (lot) of help from a good Samaritan.
Don't feel too bad. When I made my 15,000 mile Honda Reflex trip, my heavily loaded scooter fell over a few times too. Once I was at a hotel desk and somone asked if that was my scooter outside - and I said yeah - and they said they saw it fall over....all on its own. Wasn't the side stand either - it just fell over. It happens. Scratches are nothing to get too excited about.
 

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Don't know much about Memphis to Chattanooga.

I have spent considerable time around Chattanooga (visits and camped there a couple times on 3 night camps and rides - so, covered a lot of that area). Also, have spent considerable times on day rides from my home into some of the areas you will be going thru. I am retired and live in TN near Knoxville and the tourist area including Dollywood, and about 50 mile from the Dragon, Hwy 129, which as you probably know has 318 curves in 11 miles.

Take a look on www.eastTNbikers.com - Forum, Ride Reports, I report as PAULRIDES. l

Doubt, you have time for much (I recommend stop and smell the roses vs blasting from here to there, but I know how it is with limited time, folks to visit, etc.). So, do the best you can.

Anyway, I am providing three GOOGLE Maps (be sure and also use Satellite view (shows more waht you will see) and lok up some palces on Internet as I do not have time to explain all the places to you.

Start with map around Chattanooga Area. At least ride up into Lookout Mtn Area even if you don't have time to stop at all the attractions: Lookout Mtn has Ruby Falls (a falls in a cave), Point Park Military Fort, Rock City). Then circle down and thru Chickamauga (Civil War Battlefield to ride thru and see monuments - about like Gettysburg Military Park). Then back downtown along the water front area.

Map:
https://www.google.com/maps/dir/35.1686586,-86.1076883/35.0099653,-85.3440645/34.9741449,-85.3504899/34.9134623,-85.2608827/Tennessee+Aquarium/@35.1492562,-85.7828191,10z/data=!4m22!4m21!1m0!1m10!3m4!1m2!1d-85.3558749!2d34.998294!3s0x88605b8097448cf1:0xc2e9a17cbe9adb99!3m4!1m2!1d-85.3605249!2d34.9826503!3s0x88605b635b2552ab:0xa3567c505d61624a!1m0!1m0!1m5!1m1!1s0x0:0xf15811d16389331e!2m2!1d-85.311041!2d35.055831!3e0

Moving On from Chattanooga - I start map at Cleveland, TN and over to Franklin, NC

You will pass by Ocoee Whitewater Visitor Center (location of an Olympics Whitewater event). Then at Ducktown, TN there is an neat little visitor center overlooking a basin destroyed by copper mining.

You seem to be into Religion (I am not, but I enjoyed doing this anyway). There is a loop up Hwy 68 and back down to Hwy 64 that takes you by Field of Woods (look it up on Internet and use Satellite view on GOOGLE). Then at Murphy, NC there is a loop (I don't show it) that goes up to Hiwassee Dam (maybe if you have plenty of time, otherwise skip it). Then move on to Franklin, NC.

https://www.google.com/maps/dir/35.146972,-84.8327189/Ocoee+Whitewater+Center/35.0360443,-84.3784814/35.1188085,-84.2523816/35.067415,-84.0030519/35.1727398,-83.3396037/@35.0593302,-83.9572855,9z/data=!4m13!4m12!1m0!1m5!1m1!1s0x0:0x639d1fc919557711!2m2!1d-84.461337!2d35.066797!1m0!1m0!1m0!1m0!3e0

Moving on from Franklin, NC --- The best is coming.

Hwy 64 (also 28) going to Highlands, NC is a dandy (be careful on the ride as very curvy and blind curves and sometiems meet small size trailer trucks using more than their of road). Three waterfalls: 1) Very little parking along the road (shoulder), but you can usually sneak a MC in there. Better views just north of the parking (can't get down to the falls). 2) Dry Falls, but it is not dry and has a Parking Lot from which you have a short hike to get down to the falls and can walk behind it. DO NOT MISS THAT ONE. 3) Bridal Vail Falls and you can ride behind it on your bike or with a car. Low water times it may be dry or a trickle, high water times there is reasonable flow. Then onto Highlands, NC, a tourist town at 5000 foot elevation.

Nothing but good roads as you go on Hwy 64 thru Cashier, NC (another tourist town) and if you have time take Hwy 215 up to the Blue Ridge Parkway and come south on Hwy 276 to see Cradle of Forestry (deals with Biltmore Estate and First School of Forestry (really nice exhibits and a couple short trail hikes). Then you will pass Looking Glass Falls (parking right on road at the falls and a view spit right there. Can go down steps to the bottom. Plus on Hwy 215, BRP, and Hwy 276 you will ride more curves than you have in your life (I say that not knowing how much you have ridden). :)

One caution --- If you are primarily a flat road TX rider, be aware of all these curvy roads. Many people get injured or killed around here running of the roads.

https://www.google.com/maps/dir/35.1766706,-83.3516658/35.0575986,-83.1985439/35.3494018,-82.7787856/35.2964253,-82.7695893/35.27537,-82.7023469/@35.2489228,-83.0438062,10z/data=!4m17!4m16!1m0!1m10!3m4!1m2!1d-82.8470567!2d35.1932736!3s0x8859a63c82d8ade9:0xa014ae703a141aa8!3m4!1m2!1d-82.8802009!2d35.3098403!3s0x8859a0f363608e65:0x56d9710759cd2e11!1m0!1m0!1m0!3e0

I hope this helps. I tried to keep it reasonable (realizing you do not have the time to explore all things and roads in the area you are going thru -- It takes time to Smell the Roses).One other thing - open the map pictures, but also go to Satellite View (get better idea of what you are crossing. HAVE A GOOD & SAFE TRIP.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Thanks Paul for the great feedback! I will definitely study that in detail tonight before heading out tomorrow. I am in Memphis right now and it was a great ride from Pine Bluff to Memphis on hwy 79 with a cool AM breeze. I added better gloves while in Arkansas and bought a Crampbuster and that is a huge blessing!

Looking forward to tomorrow's trip down hwy 64 and am thinking of going further to Cleveland, TN if I feel up to it. Will print some of the map attractions you mentioned but hope to be in Charlotte by 5:30p (12 hours should be enough...)
 

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You are welcome --- However, I had the idea you do not have time to enjoy much. Maybe some of those right on Hwy 64 (and 28 is also 64) out of Franklin. Talking the waterfalls.

Try to at least do Dry Falls and Bridal Vail Falls.

Wish you could slow down and enjoy more. Anyway, have a good safe trip. Be aware you will be slowed down in the curvy road areas (like from Franklin, NC until well past Highlands and Cashiers, NC.) Tourist traffic for one thing and that is a very curvy section.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Yeah, Mitch, that was one of the first videos I saw that had a Burgman 400. Was blown away! Don't have a GoPro, but may invest in it one day since I have seen so many awesome things on my trip so far but could not stop and shoot pics.

By the way, congrats on your engagement!
 
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