The first trip of the season is once more the run to Tallahassee to visit our son. This is my fourth round trip to Tallahassee, beginning March 2013 with my final Bonneville road trip. There was an eventful run last year as well as an uneventful one. This time, I am going to make a three-day ride down so I can enjoy the full length of the BRP as well as another trip down Skyline Drive. The total of the two is 574 miles of curves and views.
Day One is a 5 hour slab ride to the north entrance of Skyline Drive in Front Royal, VA. I refuel at the Citgo (ETA noon) where I’ve stopped each time I make this ride for snacks and fuel. A mile later I’ll be starting a day and a half of slow sweepers. Skyline Drive is 105 miles, limit of 35, and I usually take 4 hours with stops. I should cross over to the BRP, limit 45mph, around 4pm and ride for another 2-3 hours, 90 or so miles, to Roanoke, VA. I’d rather stay at The Peaks Of Otter Lodge, where Andrew and I had a nice breakfast on the BRP the first time we rode it, but the Lodge isn’t open weekdays until May 1, so I’ll repeat our overnight at the Days Inn in Roanoke, a few miles off the BRP. That should be around 7pm when I arrive after a nice 12 hour day.
Day Two I return to the BRP where I left last night so as not to miss a mile and cruise south the remaining 365 miles, stopping here for lunch. Total should be about 12 hours, finishing at the southern terminus in Cherokee, NC. I’ll stay in a resort casino that is the same price as the crud motel from the night before.
The 200 mile range on the Tiger makes trips like this more comfortable since refueling is such an issue on the BRP. With the Bonneville, you’d start getting distracted at 120 miles worrying about refueling (especially on Sundays in the the rural South; Andrew & I went to several closed stations and restaurants looking for food & fuel on a Sunday). I expect to fuel at Citgo to start Skyline Dr, then again in Roanoke at the end of the day (105+80 tho I don’t know how my mpg will be at 40mph with my new & heavier XC). Day 2 will be at one of these spots.
Day Three isn’t Rt 95 but it is all multi-lane slabs bouncing between cities in SC and GA for eight hours. Then I will hang with family for the weekend before doing the long Route 10E to 95N home, with a single night in Rocky Mount, NC.