Today we headed for Concord/Charlotte, over 300 miles roundtrip. We got there driving backroads from Fairview, past Lake Lure. The country roads on 27 to Lincolnton were pretty and rustic. Once out of that cute town, the heat sizzled in. The ride turned miserable as we caught Charlotte traffic congestion, construction dust, and 96 degree temperatures. We are so lucky to live in the cooler mountains!
Thursday, June 21, 2007
We rode through ridge after ridge of beauty.
Wednesday, June 20, 2007
Saturday, June 16, 2007
Our last stop of the day, the Folk Art Center, east of Asheville on the Blue Ridge Parkway at Milepost 382.
We relaxed under a gigantic white oak tree. Lying on our backs, we looked up at the rich green branches that reached toward the sky. Steven remarked on the beauty of the tree and said, "This is over 100 years old. Look at it... Hard to believe it began with an acorn."
We traveled through the sunshine and fresh mountain air. We had a drizzle of rain in Burnsville, enough to cool us down.
On the parkway, Mt. Mitchell (at 6,684 feet, the highest peak east of the Mississippi) and Craggy Gardens were covered with pink, white, and purple rhododendron. A spectacular firework display of flowers!
Mt. Mitchell was named after University of North Carolina science professor Elisha Mitchell who climbed the rugged Black Mountain range.
Sunday, June 10, 2007
Yes, from the Foothills Parkway we headed over to "tame" the Tail of the Dragon at Deals Gap. The road on Route 129 has 318 curves in 11 miles at the Tennessee/North Carolina state line. Many consider the Dragon the No. 1 road in America for motorcycle enthusiasts.
We grabbed US 441 through Clingmans Dome (6643 feet), winding through the Great Smoky Mountains. We were treated to breathtaking mountain panoramas, but there was way too much traffic for me.
Here I am on the rocks, near a quiet, crystal-clear mountain stream.
Saturday, June 09, 2007
With all the beauty around us, we rode a 220-mile day together.
We started by heading North on the Blue Ridge Parkway, toward Mt. Mitchell. We stopped at the Craggy Gardens overlook and Steven had a voicemail from Dana, his friend from work. We met Dana and his wife Eva and rode more.
North to Erwin, Tennessee, road 107 took us along the Nolichucky River, which drains the WNC Blue Ridge and East Tennessee. Just a gorgeous drive. Give me a ride next to water and I’m in heaven.