Friday, August 13 |

Road Trip Pt 3: Blood Mountain

If you missed parts one and two, you can read Pt1 here, and Pt2 here.

We started the day with a scenic view of Ellijay, thanks to our stay at the Best Western. In my first post is a picture of the bike in front of the hotel, which sits on a mountaintop in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains. These photos were taken from the parking lot.

That's Hwy 5, which we came in on.

Breakfast at the IHop, then to Hwy 52 through Dahlonega, to Hwy 19 up Blood Mountain.

And why, may I ask, is it called that? Cause the hair-pin turns have caused many a scraped knee? Cause the trees in autumn turn blood red? Cause of the road kill? (ok, so I have a hang up with the stinky deceased). Or maybe because of the wars between the Creek and the Cherokee?

I don't know what the reason is behind its name. But I do know that it's beautiful. Even in the middle of summer, after spring flowers had long since finished blooming, and before the colors of fall. It's like a green tunnel. A winding, fast, heart-thumping, adrenaline-pumping tunnel. Where the wind is cool, and the rumble of another bike can be heard beyond the next curve.

This picture used with permission. Thank you Mr. Thompson
The video on the right side bar of my blog is of this road. It's a bit lengthy, but it's a good video of the road and the way the riders lean the bikes over to get through the curves. It's what some people call a 'technical' road. That means, you'd better know what you're doing, or you're going to have a lot of repair work to do when you get home. And not just on the bike!

The design of the road isn't the only thing that makes it technical. There's another factor to consider, though this problem wasn't part of the original blueprint. They're called 'tar snakes'. You know how over time the asphalt gets cracks in it, then the state comes along and fills them in?

In a vehicle, you don't even know they're there. On a bike, you do. Everything is magnified exponentially on a bike. (Like the pea-sized rock that hit my shoulder that felt like a marble? Thus the motto 'all the gear, all the time').  The tar snakes make the bike slide. I held my breath every time we hit a patch, even though we weren't going very fast. And hearing the driver say 'Woah! Did you feel that?' didn't help any! But where's the fun if there's no danger, right?

Coming up: Pit Stop at Mountain Crossings, elevation 4,458 ft.


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