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Discussion Starter #1
My wife Peggy and I took a ride through Deals Gap this morning about 11:00 and there was a fatality up there this morning at about 9:30 between MM5 and MM6. No names have been released yet, pending notification of next of kin. It appears that the rider blew a left hander and went over the side of the mountain and hit a tree on his way down. He was pronounced dead at the scene....

RIP fellow rider!
 

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I hate to read things like this. This person's family is in my thoughts and prayers.

Be safe out there guys.
 

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RIP rider. We had one go down while I was there with the ZX6r group. Rider was fine, though. The Gap can be very unforgiving, ride safe and ride smart.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
No gear except for a helmet, looks like a stretched swingarm (horrible for handling), and across the double yellow.....an accident waiting to happen, and certainly not prepared. I also heard that the skid marks where he went off the mountain was from the rear brake being locked up. It's sad that folks go up there and take silly chances like that.
 

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He's got his foot on the rear brake, but he's not covering the front. Sounds like he very well may have jammed on that rear brake.
Shame.
 

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thats why i said leave the crazy leaning and turning in the track not at the canyon just enjoy the ride up there in the canyon relax and enjoy the view. if you have a accident like that in the track you might just walk of with some bruises and scratches but you wont fall of the hill and die.
 

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God I really hate hearing stories like that, really bothers me I'm planning a trip up there in the near future, and can't wait to enjoy the ride on the FZ. Like Doublethreat mentioned; he's not wearing any gear and is across the yellow line; pretty stupid.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
paranoid1......The Gap, or as us locals call it, the hill, it a fun place to go ride....as long as you remember a couple of things.
1. It's not a place to test your fast riding skills and see how many times you can get a knee on the deck.
2. Remember, you WILL encounter vehicles over the double yellow on your side of the road.
3. Stay away from the double yellow and don't try to run a race line through there.
4. Be on constant alert for someone coming around a blind corner on your side of the road.
5. Don't get caught up looking at scenery....stay focused on the road

At the Gap, if you screw up, there are generally only a couple of options.....
1. You go over the mountain and become a lumber jack.......trying to cut down trees with your body
2. You go into the mountain and become a "wall plaque"
3. You make contact with an oncoming object

None of the above scenarios will have a happy ending and will generally result in a ruined day at least.....or critical injuries or possibly fatal injuries. Remember, up there you are at least over an hour away from any type of trauma center. Onsite response by medical is generally in the 45 minute range and then to get someone a life flight involves another 1/2 hour to 45 minutes......WELL OUTSIDE of the golden 1 hour window of survival.

It really is a fun road to ride....if you ride it reasonably and take your time....remembering that it is NOT a racetrack. I might also suggest that it really isn't a good place to go if you aren't used to riding in the mountains at all, or you a fairly new rider.
 

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It's too bad. Those of us who ride aggressively have experienced this a time or two and hopefully learn from the experience. I've done it. I was on my GSX-R1000 going way too fast into a blind right-hand turn. It was especially bad because it was downhill. Going downhill is worse because of course your engine braking and brakes are not as effective with gravity working against you as you attempt to slow down. I did not crash, but I went entirely into the left lane and off the wrong side of the road. Had a car been coming the other direction or if there had been trees or a drop off, it would have been very bad.
 

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Doublethreat; I have a few questions. I am thinking of bringing my bike up on a trailer. Do alot of folks do that? Is there a place to keep the car and trailer parked for the day? I would bring my wife along and make a little vacation out of the trip. While I,m riding for the day, she would hike. After that we would spend some time together. Are there many hotels around? I would imagine the closest city around is Chattanooga TN. Besides good riding roads, is there much else around there?
 

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Doublethreat; I have a few questions. I am thinking of bringing my bike up on a trailer. Do alot of folks do that? Is there a place to keep the car and trailer parked for the day? I would bring my wife along and make a little vacation out of the trip. While I,m riding for the day, she would hike. After that we would spend some time together. Are there many hotels around? I would imagine the closest city around is Chattanooga TN. Besides good riding roads, is there much else around there?
I'm sure doublethreat will reply soon, but until then I'll give you what I can. I live half an hour from The Dragon.

Yes, a lot of folks trailer their bikes to The Dragon. I wouldn't suggest driving your trailer on The Dragon, but that's left to your discretion. I would suggest staying in Maryville, TN. It's about 30 minute drive from The Dragon. It's not a huge town, but has many hotels, places to eat, etc. It's also just down the road from the Great Smokey Mountains national park. There are a million things to do there with your wife. She can also hike there as well. I think there are over 800 miles worth of hiking trails in GSMNP. Anymore questions, and I'd be happy to answer. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Thanks Haley.....you are spot on with your post. Paranoid......If you are coming into the area from the South, Robbinsville, N.C. might be a good option also.....several motels there and Deals Gap is only 18 or 19 miles to the North. There are quite a few Inns and some motorcycle friendly places there also.....garages for the bike at night, etc. As Haley stated though, Maryville is probably more centrally located for what you and your wife want to do. A small town/area called Townsend is another possibility and it's east of Maryville and closer to the Great Smoky Mountain Park area, but on the "quiet" side of the Smokies......less tourist trap places like Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge, etc. As far as parking your trailer for all day, just as you leave the lake area and cross Tabcat Bridge, there is a pull off that is paved and good to go for all day parking of your vehicle and trailer. Hit me up if you have any questions and I'll try to answer them or point you in the right direction if I can.
 

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Thanks I truly appreciate everyone's insight and input. "The Dragon" is obviously the road to ride while your in the area. But I would think there are many others great rides. Looking at a road map doesn't really give a true picture. I would really like to get on some roads that are less traveled; not be riding in a parade of bikes. Looks like Rt. 28 to the north might be nice.
 

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Thanks I truly appreciate everyone's insight and input. "The Dragon" is obviously the road to ride while your in the area. But I would think there are many others great rides. Looking at a road map doesn't really give a true picture. I would really like to get on some roads that are less traveled; not be riding in a parade of bikes. Looks like Rt. 28 to the north might be nice.
"The Moonshiner" 28 is AWESOME! One of my favorites . Also hit up the Cherohala Skyway - it's quite chilly at the top this time of year. There's also a short road called the Foothills Parkway that's a quaint and beautiful ride. Both these roads actually connect to The Dragon. Also connecting to The Cherohala Skyway is Highway 360 - it's a easy, pretty, noncrowded route. I'm not sure how far you're wanting to go, but to the south is Highway 68 that takes you to Georgia, and it's one of my favorites. There's also a "triangle" of roads a bit West of The Dragon called The Devil's Triangle. You can Google 'Devil's Triangle' for road numbers and directions, I don't recall the road numbers - one of the roads is 116. Those are a few good ones anyway...
 
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