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Old 11-06-07, 09:30 AM   #1
hankbrandenburg
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Riding on Blue Ridge Parkway?

I'm about to spend a few days at Blowing Rock, NC right next to the BRP. I'm curious if anyone has ridden along the parkway and what to look out for if I decide to do some riding on it.
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Old 11-06-07, 02:06 PM   #2
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I used to live just down the hill from Blowing Rock, right off of the Catawba river. The BRP has glass smooth roads, great riding. Look out for sports cars and motorcycles hauling ass around the blind curves. And be prepared for some huge hills. You'll be in some of the most rugged mountains east of the Mississippi, and they'll feel like it.

Beautiful country and Blowing Rock is a fun town. Hope you enjoy your trip.
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Old 11-06-07, 05:29 PM   #3
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You may wanna double up and post in the regional southeast forums to get locals to chime in. I ride up there a lot - although I'm slow as molasses. Basically what AllenG said about traffic, especially in the fall. Most mind their manners though.

Bring a blinkie or two for any tunnels you will come across. Best to be seen in the dark while drivers' eyes adjust. If you have a small headlight - even better. Trust me on this. Rangers may also ticket you if you don't have a blinkie, but I'm not positive about that.

Beautiful and lots of great climbing and descents. Totally worth it! Enjoy and bring back some pictures!!!
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Old 11-06-07, 06:59 PM   #4
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Haven't ridden it in years but it is an awesome experience. The grades are long and slow going up and fast and furious coming down. I actually got stopped after storming down Deep Gap Mountain at 52mph on a loaded tour bike The ranger was pretty cool about it, and just told me to take it easy. The only thing that I have heard negative is to watch out for the monster RV's.

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Old 11-06-07, 08:03 PM   #5
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Wife and I rode most of the Parkway in 1981, on the way from Atlanta to New Hampshire. Fantastic memories.
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Old 11-07-07, 12:53 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by hankbrandenburg View Post
I'm about to spend a few days at Blowing Rock, NC right next to the BRP. I'm curious if anyone has ridden along the parkway and what to look out for if I decide to do some riding on it.
We spent some time near Asheville last summer and did alot of driving on the Parkway. I was jealous everytime we passed a cyclist,actually tried to give one a ride when he had a flat but he was about a 1/2 mile from his car so he wanted to finish out his ride that day walking. . Hey cool last name Hank, I'm a Brandenburg also,from the Frederick,Maryland area. Have a good trip..
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Old 11-07-07, 06:02 PM   #7
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Did the blood, sweat and gears ride in Boone this past june, I loved it! Then I had my wife drop me off On the parkway at peachtree meadows and rode to MT. Mitchell, it was amazing (I'm from Ohio so nothing like it around me) the climbs where non-stop, and the views are just awesome. BTW, bring your climbing legs, In the 16 miles it took to get to mitchell only 3 were down hill.
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Old 11-07-07, 06:57 PM   #8
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Given the leaf peepers, I suggest BRIGHT clothes - give the motorists lots of warning. I've ridden the whole parkway. Great trip! 1970s. Grades aren't too bad at all, just long. Have sufficient warmies for the downhills.
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Old 11-10-07, 08:19 PM   #9
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Sounds like an awesome ride. Let us know how it was as I was thinking about a ride there some day.

Ride safe,
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Old 11-11-07, 12:27 AM   #10
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Here are two useful links for the Blue Ridge parkway.

Ray
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Old 11-11-07, 08:32 AM   #11
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Here are two useful links for the Blue Ridge parkway.

Ray
I could not get either link to work.
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Old 11-11-07, 09:29 AM   #12
raybo
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For those who can't access the actual links I am referring to above, the best one is www.blueridgeparkway.org.

Ray
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Old 11-12-07, 10:35 AM   #13
hankbrandenburg
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Update: I've been down here for several days now, and have been out on the parkway twice. The scenery is beautiful, the natives very bicycle-friendly, and the climbs are AWESOME! I took mandovoodo's advice and wore my commuter visibility vest, and the only close call was a giant RV as noted by wahoonc.

The climbs are long and relatively gentle, and at this time of year I find myself not even pedaling down the hills, as it is quite chilly out there in the wind. Very strange, but I find myself wanting to climb again just to warm up!

In any case thanks for the all the advice; I highly recommend the riding out here and plan to return in June!
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