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My son and I plan on going on a 5 day cycle trip at the end of May. I will be riding my newly acquired Burg 650 and he will be riding my well broke in Majesty. We are in Central Tennessee near Dale Hollow Lake and will be going up to WV, no where in particular and will be camping out. Would like to get some advice about routing and possible places to visit in eastern Ky and WV on the trip, camp grounds and such. Once in WV we would like to camp somewhere with some hiking near waterfalls or mountain streams. Any input would be appreciated.
 

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I'm just going to put this out there. I'm going to be coming up that way to Deals Gap- aka Tail of the Dragon. you should you tube it.
I'll probably be up there around the first of May.
If I were in your area, that's where I'd go.
 

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I agree with "ITLIVES" do Tail of the Dragon then take the Blue Ridge Parkway north... It is beautiful and full of hiking trails and nature. There is a motorcycle only camp ground just off the the parkway at THE MEADOWS OF DAN. You will not regret the ride, you may not make it to WV because of what the Parkway offers.... Really!!
 

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If you are going to be near the KY/WV/Tenn
corner, Cumberland Gap Nat. Hist. Park is right
there....entrance in the Middlesboro, KY area.
 

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The Dragon is a great time, but he lives just 3 hours north of it and is planning a 5-day trip! Plenty of fantastic options which both provide great riding and get you out of the immediate area. Try heading up to Paducah, KY and then threading your way east on US60 along the southern bank of the Ohio River. A good stop is at the Otter Creek Outdoor Rec facility in Fort Knox (yes, THAT Fort Knox) where they have nice camping facilities. Wish I'd been in that area more; I'd have more suggestions, but almost anywhere you go up there is beautiful.

If you were thinking about heading south, I'd recommend the Natchez Trace route.
 

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I agree with "ITLIVES" do Tail of the Dragon then take the Blue Ridge Parkway north... It is beautiful and full of hiking trails and nature. There is a motorcycle only camp ground just off the the parkway at THE MEADOWS OF DAN. You will not regret the ride, you may not make it to WV because of what the Parkway offers.... Really!!
I have lived in the mountains most of my live (in Va and within 40 of TN, NC, and WV and within about 70 miles of KY) and ridden here for the last 30-40 years. Like others, I had to go ride the Tail of the Dragon to see what it was all about. I was very disappointed that I had left far better riding almost within sight of my house to go to a over hyped place. If flatlanders and city folks ride to the Tail of the Dragon on the Parkway and return, they will miss the good riding the mountains have where there are few police, little traffic and nice folks.
 

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My son and I plan on going on a 5 day cycle trip at the end of May. I will be riding my newly acquired Burg 650 and he will be riding my well broke in Majesty. We are in Central Tennessee near Dale Hollow Lake and will be going up to WV, no where in particular and will be camping out. Would like to get some advice about routing and possible places to visit in eastern Ky and WV on the trip, camp grounds and such. Once in WV we would like to camp somewhere with some hiking near waterfalls or mountain streams. Any input would be appreciated.
Pack light. Take a extra tee shirt, two pairs of socks and underwear. I usually take my oldest most stained stuff. Throw them away when you need to change. When you need more (and you will on a 5 day trip) drop by a Walmart (they are everywhere) and buy some more cheap stuff. This will also give you a chance to pick up munchies at the same time as most Walmarts have a grocery too. Now for stuff you plan to keep... Take a pair of comfortable walking shoes and shower shoes too. I kill both birds with one stone, I take a pair of Crocks with me, I can use them for both tasks. Take your bath kit with soap, toothbrush, shampoo and such. Don't forget toilet paper. I take a hand towel to dry off after showering. I also carry several old ratty wash clothes with me, they are good in the shower and also can be used as hot pads for cooking. Rain gear, riding gear and your camping gear. That will pretty much do you for the trip.

Places to go... Take him to ride some of the Blue Ridge Parkway. My son and I picked it up at Asheville, NC and rode south. Very scenic, a good ride. Ride down to Cherokee, NC, visit the town and take in the tourist stuff the Cherokee have. Go visit the National Park, lots of good riding in the Smoky Mountains. A good camping spot in the mountains is the Iron Horse Campground. Call ahead and check for accommodations, I am not sure when they open for the season. Believe me, you can easily spend 5 days riding the Smoky Mountains without getting bored. Lots of hiking in the Smoky Mountains too. You could always walk part of the Appalachian Trail.

Namaste'
Doug from Kentucky
 

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Though it has nothing to do with motorcycling, if you happen to be in or near Cherokee, NC between early June and mid August, I'd recommend taking an evening and seeing Unto These Hills. It's an outdoor historical drama which they've been doing up there every summer for over 60 years, and it tells the story of America from the perspective of the Cherokee nation. They really do it right. Get there early because they do a sing-along while the 2,800 seat amphitheater fills up. The reserved seats are WELL worth the extra three bucks. The show lets out late, but I've driven back to both Townsend, TN and Robbinsville, NC afterwards with no trouble at all.
 

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Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum located in Weston, WV. Supposedly haunted. http://trans-alleghenylunaticasylum.com/ They do tours and such.
I drive by the old Asylum twice a month for work and it's a huge set of buildings. If you're into the haunted house thing it would be worth a stop. Then you could take rt 33 east and then rt 47 to Parkersburg, WV good drive if you like the twistes, not much traffic. Fill up with gas before leaving Weston!

If you find yourself in need of a set of tools or an extra hand just drop a private note for my cell phone and address. I agree with the good advice to ride up/down the Ohio River on the old 2-land routes.

Sounds like a great ride!

Bruce Brown
Ravenswood, WV
 

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I had to go ride the Tail of the Dragon to see what it was all about. I was very disappointed that I had left far better riding almost within sight of my house to go to a over hyped place.
I've done quite a bit of "internetting" on the roads up there. I would like to spend 3-4 days to be able to just criuse, but alas, I only have so much time. So, I will go to the over-hyped Dragon and enjoy the best a flat-lander from the swamps can. (If I can, I'll spend 2 days there- HA!)
 

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West Virginia

You are welcome to visit my website: www.RidingWV.com for ideas. It is still a work in progress, so some pages are still pretty empty.

Hope you find something interesting.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Want to thank all for your replies and suggestions. Lots of good ideas. The day after I started this thread my new issue of rider magazine came in the mail and would you believe the "Favorite Ride" article was on you guessed it. West Virginia! I will be following pretty close to the course outlined in the article. I think I will make the Blue Ridge Parkway later on this summer.
 
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