Deal’s Gap and Tail of the Dragon – October 2014

So, not long after getting my latest ride, a 2014 BMW R1200GS, Kim and Ricky Derby invited me along for a trip to the NC Mountains.  The plan was to spend a full day riding the beautiful twisties and mountainsides, including a trip along Highway 129 between North Carolina and Tennessee, home of the famous Tail of the Dragon 318 curves in 11 miles.

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We stayed at a nice hotel called Creekside Lodge a few miles away in Maggie Valley, NC.  The rooms are comfortable and there are plenty of nice places to eat within walking distance.

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Saturday morning, we got up early for breakfast and headed out.  It was a crisp 29 degrees when we headed into the mountains. After an hour of riding, we came upon Fontana Dam, made famous by the movie Fugitive starring Harrison Ford.

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Our next stop was at the Deal’s Gap Motorcycle Resort, which marks one end of the Dragon on the NC side.

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And of course, the Tree of Shame, ladened with parts that had been strewn along the Dragon.

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We stopped at the “end” to find this nice overlook.

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There are several companies that sit and take pictures along the Dragon.  Later, you can go on their website, find, and download your pictures for a nominal fee.

IMG_0033Toward the end of the day, after 250 miles or so, we stopped along the side of the road for a break.

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Here’s a condensed ride along the Dragon.

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