I’ve got my final two classical music concerts to give in Manhattan next month; why fly when it’s a 2,000 mile r/t bike run, and 574 smiles each way are the Blue Ridge Parkway and Skyline Drive!
Having ridden the BRP-SLD up and down a few times, first just some with Andrew; then a bunch with Frenchy (twice), Anthony, Andre, Ariel, Matt, Rob and Lori, as well as a solo trip North to South in it’s entirety, I’m not doing too much planning or over-packing.
Day One is 10 hours of back country Georgia to get to the southern entrance of the BRP in Cherokee, NC. This is a tedious day but the barren roads are relaxing. I’ve never done this leg this way before and maybe there will be a culinary surprise or two on the road. I know in Cherokee I can count on a fresh trout dinner.
Day Two is the first 273 miles of the BRP. Twisting through North Carolina over the cliffs and eventually down into the Virginia valley, this is 10 hours in second/third gear, 45mph max. Expect deer, bear, RVs & retirees.
Day Three is the northern 196 miles of the BRP and the 10 meter crossover to Skyline Drive (35mph). Four hours and 105 miles later, we’re in Front Royal, VA. Awaken the next day for a five hour highway blast home. Four days and 1,000 miles.
I’m very excited to take this run as leaving in late April is more rewarding than in mid-March, which kept me out of altitudes on the BRP a few years ago. I will lug my Gerbings liner and gloves for any frosty mornings in the mountains but don’t expect to use them much. The Tiger is at over 22,000 miles so this loop will put us just over the dreaded 24k tank-off/valve peek ($$$$). I am asking myself if a valve peek is really in order; I have never red-lined, shift at 6k, and can’t imagine needing a shim. All the labor money and the ‘good’ news is we don’t need a $5 shim…