06/09/11 NC Road Trip Day 3


Deal’s Gap/The Dragon/Cherohala Skyway
220 miles

So this was The Day: Deal’s Gap and The Tail of the Dragon, ta da!

Deal’s Gap, the motorcycle ‘resort’. Why the quotes? I am definitely not a snob-I’ve stayed in places that don’t even earn a rating all the way up to five-star hotels-but I wouldn’t call this a resort. There’s a small gas station, bar and restaurant (we decided not to stand in line for a $7 cheeseburger), a few outdoor vendors along with very loud music, lots and lots and lots of motorcycles. The souvenir/gift shop is good-sized, mostly t-shirts, and even with long lines three cashiers get everyone out the door quickly. And of course the infamous Tree of Shame. It was interesting but with the addition of a Big Wheel, crutches, and a fake leg/foot, I don’t think everything on the tree is authentic from the road (damn, my mannequin lost its foot on The Dragon!).

On to The Dragon: 318 curves in 11 miles. From everything I’d heard and seen prior to the trip I admit I was a bit apprehensive. I can understand why riders enjoy it but as a passenger I found it boring after the first 15-20 minutes. Curve after curve and the scenery for almost the entire distance is trees. We rode it three times and by the last I’d swear it had gotten longer than 11 miles!

So gem of the day for me was the Cherohala Skyway: it still had lots of curves with the addition of  beautiful mountain scenery and speeds over 30 mph.

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12 thoughts on “06/09/11 NC Road Trip Day 3

  1. I agree with your assement of Deal’s Gap and The Dragon. Been there done that. Resort? Uh…well if you call a row of run down sleeping shacks a resort…ok. I’ve eaten there, didn’t order the 7 buck burger though! Generally, all I do there is get gas and get moving onto Cherohala Skyway and get accommodations in Tennessee at the end of the Skyway. Yes, it’s the best part of the entire ride. Then of course you must see The Great Smoky Mountain National Park which is in Tennessee as well. But don’t do it on a weekend and be there when when the park 1st opens or the cars will be too heavy and your bike will be in danger of over heating or burning a piston or 2.

    Oh such great roads to ride once you’re in TN. I hope to read further that you took advantage! Wonderful story so far…. I am standing by for more! 😉

  2. I love the tree of shame. Too bad I didn’t save anything when my husband wrecked my bike! I would have made him drive there just to hang something up!

  3. Great pics! Did you happen to take a picture of Killboy taking a picture of you?

    I would not want to spend the night at the “Deal’s Gap Motorcycle Resort”… too crowded and loud. We stayed at Iron Horse Lodge. http://ironhorsenc.com/ It’s back in the woods. You can camp, get a room, or rent a whole cabin. They serve real meals in the lodge, pork chops, ribs, salmon, etc. Reasonably priced. Friendly people.

    ~Jessie

  4. I remember crossing the Tail of the Dragon during my hike – looked challenging! We saw a couple of motorcyclists on it – taking a break at a turnout. Cool!

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