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I'm planning on heading out on my first long road trip on the TW in May. I'm thinking of riding the Blue Ridge Parkway, then Skyline Dr. I'll be camping along the way, and I might spend a couple nights in Shenandoah. I have 10 days, and will be leaving from north Florida. My 2013 TW has just over 2000 miles on it, and is in great shape. My plans aren't set in stone.

Anyone have any tips for places of interest? Especially nice rides? Any good off road rides I can hit between Florida and Virginia? I figure some of you guys have some good experience that you'd like to share.
 

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Stop by a WallyWorld and pick up an ATV seat cover. Cut off the straps and locking buckles but LEAVE the loops so you can tie the cover on with 1/4" or 1/8" bungee cord. This will allow the cord to flex when it contacts the frame area.
 

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If you haven't done it yet, pick up one of the $20 Walmart/Coleman ATV seat pads. Straps right on with no mods. Adding the pad to the stock seat took me from a range of about 200 comfortable miles to about 300. It's $20 very well spent.

You should bring along some spare oil too. Some riders (myself included) have experienced oil consumption when riding at highway speeds for long periods of time. I carry a MSR fuel bottle of oil now, marked with black tape to avoid confusion!
 

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I've camped with my TW at the following, all on or near the BRP:
A side ride up Mt. Mitchell is worthwhile.

Blue Ridge Motorcycle Campground
Ironhorse Motorcycle Lodge | 828-479-3864 Iron Horse Motorcycle Lodge near Tail of the Dragon at Deals Gap and Cherohala Skyway
Willville Motorcycle Campground
The Diamondback Motorcycle & Sportscar Route

The northern half of the BRP in VA is quite tame/boring compared to the southern half in NC.
So is Skyline Drive.
The best section is Cherokee to Blowing Rock/Boone.

However, if you're coming from FL, everything will be awesome.
 

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Pack some Ibuprofen, your butt and lower back is going to need it. :D
I have found that a back belt (aka Kidney belt, Stocker's belt) is a real help on long days in the saddle. You can get a moto specific one or just one from a pharmacy. Make sure it's at least 8" high with good Velcro, preferably with tightening straps.
Like this: Amazon.com: MUELLER Lumbar Back Brace With Removable Pad: Health & Personal Care

Or this: http://www.amazon.com/One-Industries-Atom-Kidney-Black/dp/B00F45U9M0/ref=sr_1_5?ie=UTF8&qid=1396122064&sr=8-5&keywords=motorcycle+kidney+belt
This is the one I have. It doubles my hours before soreness.
 

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Seat concepts will be your best friend. Pack light on the clothing. Take a spare spark plug, masterlink and a spare tube or a patch kit that is if you have a way of getting the tire off and on and can air it back up. Rain gear can be your friend also. Put it on over your regular riding gear and you can handle some pretty cold temperature since its basically wind resistant. Tourmaster makes a pair of boot rain covers for about $25. They slip on and zip up. The last time I was in that area it basically rained 3 days in a row and my boots were dry as a bone. One of the few waterproof things that have really worked well.
 

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So many good roads to hit. Here is a link with alot of good riding in the area. Tail of the Dragon at Deals Gap and Cherohala Skyway, Graham Co, NC
also check out 421 The Snake - 33 Miles, 489 Curves, 3 Mountains, and 1 Valley the Cherohala skyway is one of my favorites between Telico plains TN-Robinsville NC. Bald river falls is a neat waterfall off of the Cherohala skyway. On the east end of the Cherohala skyway is the Santeetlah rd that goes through the Joyce Kilmer forest and its kinda a shortcut to 129 "dragons tail". Highway 151 "Pisgah highway" its just west of Asheville NC. 19west to 151 south and it deads ends on the Blue Ridge Parkway. Its about as curvy as the dragons tail with alot less traffic. Heintooga/Balsam mtn loop out of Cherokee is an awesome ride but I think its closed this year. Check before you go because it would be worth it. 28 from the dragons tail store "[email protected]"east towards Cherokee is a great road and stop and check out Fontana dam. You will see the sign. You can ride up to the bottom of it or go on up and ride across the top of it. Foothills parkway is a pretty nice ride. 39 going north out of Lexington VA is a beautiful road. Take it all the way to 19 and go west a little ways and you will go over the new river gorge bridge. You can take a side road and ride all the way to the bottom under the bridge on some very twisty little roads aand come back up the other side. I was suprised how nice and scenic it was from Lexington VA on up 39 north. The first link I posted has all kinds of neat roads in the area. I would take the time to look through that whole site.
 

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Hunts Lodge Motorcycle Campground. You have to be either on, or towing a motorcycle to camp there.

Within day-trip distance of Deals Gap, Tail of the Dragon, and many other famous roads.
 

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My 90 TW Rides like a Sherman Tank. I could not imagine taking it for a long cruise. My top speed is 50 mph downhill in neutral with the wind at my back. I must step up my game.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Wow! Thanks for all the info guys. I have plenty more research to do with all the places and links you've given me.

I'll definitely take the advice on the seat pad. I'd read that several times, but had completely overlooked it while planning this trip.
 

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The seat pad helps but it doesnt compare to the seat concepts seat . Yeah the price doesnt compare either but I can ride a week straight and walk into a house and sit on a couch with no pain. With the stock seat after a day of riding I would have to stand up for a while after getting off the bike before I could sit down.. now you just have to do some mapping out. Another handy tool is the cycoactive barpack mapcase. BarPack Mapcase (080-0030) - CycoActive. Especially if your not using some kind of navigation system. Your going to have some fun.
 

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What dates are your trip? We are staying in Robbinsville, NC from May 4th through May 11th. We are calling it the dirty gap trip. Would
over to see another tub even if it was just a day.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
What dates are your trip? We are staying in Robbinsville, NC from May 4th through May 11th. We are calling it the dirty gap trip. Would
over to see another tub even if it was just a day.
Ah well, I won't be up there until the 20th.
 

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yes, a decent seat. I was pleasantly surprise that it was ok offroad also. The backrest didn't get in the way at all.

Most of all, take your time and enjoy the ride. Have fun and let us know with lots of pics.
 

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