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Old 05-30-08, 02:46 PM   #1
TexasVol
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Dragon's Tail

Any advice on riding the 'tail? Planning on a mid-week afternoon in July.

Am I insane?
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Old 05-30-08, 07:06 PM   #2
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Mid-week? Insane, no. Just don't do it when people might be off for some long July 4th break. There are some native Western NC'ers might have more insight. But there is so much good riding out there I would avoid Dragon's Tail given the crazy motorcycles during this time of year.
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Old 05-30-08, 08:36 PM   #3
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Sounds like an unnecessary risk to me.
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Old 05-30-08, 09:57 PM   #4
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I wouldn't recommend riding through the Tail of the Dragon even during the week. I just don't think it will be a pleasant experience. Are you staying in the area? Maybe I could suggest some other routes that are near where you will be.
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Old 05-31-08, 10:45 AM   #5
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I wouldn't do it unless I was on a motorcycle. And even then I'd be worried (and I've done it several times on a motorcycle over the past 10 years).

Sorry, that place has too many reckless people.
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Old 05-31-08, 11:14 AM   #6
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Do they still have one day of the year that is dedicated to cyclists? I thought I read that somewhere.
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Old 05-31-08, 11:50 AM   #7
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Do they still have one day of the year that is dedicated to cyclists? I thought I read that somewhere.
I don't know about that but the Cherohala Challenge century (115 miles) rides through there on 6/21.
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Old 05-31-08, 10:03 PM   #8
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Is Dragon's Tail ok in the off-season? Or is it pretty much off limits year round?
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Old 06-01-08, 12:37 PM   #9
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Do they still have one day of the year that is dedicated to cyclists? I thought I read that somewhere.
I'm not aware of such a day. The road remains open even during the organized century (Cherohala Challenge). I can't imagine them closing it other than for weather or road work. There's not many roads through the mountains in this area.

If you go early enough in the morning, you probably won't encounter too much traffic. But you never know when some moron will come flying around the corner
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Old 06-01-08, 12:52 PM   #10
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Speaking of the Cherohala Challenge, are you doing the century this year Velo Vol? I'm thinking about it but need to get through Mitchell first.
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Old 06-01-08, 02:47 PM   #11
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If you're VERY fast (i.e., Lance still can't catch you), you might have a shot.

If not, I'd say to not ride it. If I've heard about that road, then you can be sure that every ricer & biker has heard about it, too, and wants their own shot at narrowly avoiding death.
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Old 06-01-08, 07:38 PM   #12
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Speaking of the Cherohala Challenge, are you doing the century this year Velo Vol?
I haven't yet registered, but I fully expect to.

Anyone interested in riding the Dragon--this event is as good a time to ride it as any because you at least have safety in numbers. Motorists coming through then are expecting to see cyclists. Plus there's a food stop at the top.
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Old 06-03-08, 11:47 AM   #13
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I wouldn't do it. Yes, you can make it through there during the week without much risk to life, but why?

It's not a scenic road, and it doesn't really connect anything worth seeing either. There are MUCH better, and safer, places to ride in the area.

I used to be one of those motorcycle riders hanging around that area... running those roads much faster than you want to be passed.
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Old 06-07-08, 09:51 AM   #14
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I have ridden this road during the Cherohala and on my own. It really is not that bad. Yes, there are a lot of motorcycles, and yes, a few of them are ridden irresponsibly. But I would rather ride there than many of the other narrow area roads crowded with trucks and dually pickups. (I might note that when the Honda Hoot is in town, there is even more motorcycle traffic in the area, including the foothills parkway and the Cherohala.)

And while it is not the Alps, it does have some nice Smokey Mountain scenery -- I don't see why anyone would flat-out say it is not scenic.

What would JeffS suggest as better rides in the area?
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