Topic: 10 horsepower, 5 days and no plan.  (Read 900 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.


Offline klaviator

  • Mod Squad
  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 1143
« Reply #15 on: May 13, 2017, 08:02:04 AM »
The view this morning.



I think I'll head to the BRP and then stop by a motorcycle dealer in Asheville. 

Offline merc16

  • Event Planning
  • Sr. Member
  • *
  • Posts: 154
« Reply #16 on: May 13, 2017, 09:28:21 AM »
Your threads are awesome klaviator !!
Justin
2003 Kawasaki ZRX1200,  2015 Yamaha FZ-07, 2018 Kawasaki Z125 PRO SE

Offline klaviator

  • Mod Squad
  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 1143
« Reply #17 on: May 13, 2017, 02:52:11 PM »
Made it to Bryson City, checked into the motel and unpacked. I'm heading back out to explore the town and local area. A little preview of today's ride:


Offline klaviator

  • Mod Squad
  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 1143
« Reply #18 on: May 15, 2017, 08:03:06 AM »
By the time I took off the rain had stopped. 74a towards Asheville is a fantastic road for about 10 miles or so. Then it straightens out and eventually becomes a four lane. I took it to the BRP, rode the BRP for a few miles then off on 25 into Asheville. I had breakfast at Huddle House and then stopped by MR Motorcycle. It was bigger than any of the Huntsville area dealers but I didn't find anything that I just had to buy.



Then I gassed up and headed back to the BRP. It started raining in Asheville but on the BRP it was mostly dry with periods of rain and/or fog. I stopped and took a lot of pics.



And I took some pics while riding.



.



.



.




I rode through a lot of tunnels.



.



I wasn't the only one out riding.



.



.



.



.



.



I rode through Cherokee. A lot of people come here to throw away their money at the casino. I'd rather throw my money away on gas for my bike.



Checked into my motel in Bryson City.



This place is on top of a hill and has a nice view.





« Last Edit: May 16, 2017, 04:08:41 PM by klaviator »

Offline klaviator

  • Mod Squad
  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 1143
« Reply #19 on: May 15, 2017, 03:05:54 PM »
It was still early so So I went out to explore Bryson City and ended up following a road out of town. It was a nice curvy road that dead ended at some camp where a wedding party was getting pictures taken. So I turned around and headed back into town. I was planning on riding around town but ended up on another road out of town. I saw this sign and knew I had to ride this road.



I had heard of the Road To Nowhere before. They had built this road a long time ago with the intention of it actually going somewhere. I had wanted to ride it for a long time but never got around to it. This was my chance to do it. So I rode on. The first mile or so was a pretty normal road with houses and a school on it. Then I came to this:




After that it became a nice curvy road. I was having fun enjoying the curves and the scenery until I came up behind three motorcycles. They where going real slow so I figured I'd take some pics and at least enjoy the scenery.



So we where in a long easy curve when the first two riders crossed into the other lane. I hurried and snapped a pic before they got back into the right lane.



I was a little slow taking the pic. They were way in the left lane. The gal riding third stayed in her lane. I couldn't handle following any more so I pulled over and let them get down the road before I continued. There road soon ended. So i guess this is "Nowhere"



The pavement continued to a tunnel.




I didn't check out the tunnel but someone there told me the pavement ended at the end of the tunnel and there were hiking trails on the other side. Here's a link with some interesting info on this road: http://www.westernncattractions.com/the-road-to-nowhere/

By the time I took the pics the three riders had already taken off. I caught up to them pretty quickly and they were putting along holding up a couple of pickup trucks so I decided to stop and take some pics rather than practice my slow speed riding skills.



Then I rode back to town and cruised around a bit looking for a place to eat.




I picked a Mexican place for dinner. It was a good choice. The food was great.




Then I stopped at TCBY for desert and then back to the motel. 




Offline springer

  • Mod Squad
  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 699
« Reply #20 on: May 15, 2017, 05:26:50 PM »
KEEP IT COMING!!!!








You do know you are personally creating "scooter envy" on this site, right?  ;)

Offline klaviator

  • Mod Squad
  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 1143
« Reply #21 on: May 16, 2017, 09:15:17 AM »
KEEP IT COMING!!!!








You do know you are personally creating "scooter envy" on this site, right?  ;)

One more day to go. 

Creating scooter envy?   I've been trying to do that since I joined this forum.  I'll know I have succeeded when more people on this forum start riding scooters..

Offline klaviator

  • Mod Squad
  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 1143
« Reply #22 on: May 16, 2017, 09:31:03 AM »
I got up early Sunday morning, around 5 AM. I was on the road before 6. It was 48 degrees and foggy in some spots. Still, the roads where dry and it was forecast to be a beautiful day



So why so early? Three reasons. First is that the time around sunrise is normally a great time to take pics although not so much this morning due to the fog and clouds. Second, a friend from the ADV forum and some of his riding buddies normally ride up to Deal's Gap early Sunday morning and I planned to meet them at the overlook like I have several times in the past. Third, the best time to ride Deal's Gap is early before slow moving traffic shows up.

I saw a photo opportunity so I pulled off.



And another.



I rode past the Deal's Gap resort and there was no sign of life there, just a bunch of motorcycles parked in front of the motel rooms and campsite.  The regular parking lot was deserted.  I rode on.  I had the road to myself.  Since there photographers where not out yet I guess I would have to take some pictures myself.



.



When I got to the overlook no one was there yet so I continued on down to the lake which I was surprised to see was still empty.



So I headed back up stopping to get a pic of this sign.



Hi Crash Area?    Good thing I'm on a scooter and not a motorcycle so this sign doesn't apply to me ;D

I stopped at the overlook. Notice how crowded it is being a Sunday morning and all :o


 

I hung out for a bit. It was a beautiful day and this is a nice spot. A few bikes and cars went by. A big diesel pusher motorhome towing a car went by. I wonder if he knew what he was in for driving this road?

Some sport bikes went by. I manged to get a pic but I don't think I will be putting Killboy out of business anytime soon ;D



A little later my friend showed up.  For those of you on the ADV forum, this is "Trash Can"



We talked a couple of minutes and headed off, me in the lead. It had been around 10 minutes since the RV went by but we caught up to it pretty quickly. I turned on my camera hoping to get some pics of it crossing the Double Yellow for the Killboy Fail thread but it pulled into the first turnoff to let us by.



Then it was fun run with no more traffic all the way to the Deal's Gap Motorcycle REsort where we had breakfast.

« Last Edit: May 16, 2017, 11:04:37 AM by klaviator »

Offline klaviator

  • Mod Squad
  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 1143
« Reply #23 on: May 16, 2017, 10:36:56 AM »
After breakfast we headed out to the parking lot where we hung out and watched the show that is Deal's Gap on a weekend.  It was still pretty quiet since most people seem to prefer sleeping in late to enjoying the traffic free roads.  They will get up, go ride and grumble about all the traffic slowing them down :o



This was parked there.  Not sure what the story behind it is.



Eventually the group decided to ride the Skyway.  I was invited along but declined partly because I wanted to do some more riding before heading over the skyway and partly because I could never have kept up anyway.

Gearing up.



And heading out:



So I headed over to the gas pump to get a little gas.  I put in a whole dollar or .33 gallons ::)  I just needed enough to get me to Robbinsville where I would fill up. 

I headed down 129 towards Robbinsville but made a few detours and stops along the way. 

This is about a mile down the road.  I'd guess that most people who ride through here don't even know it's here.



As the road ran along the Cheoh river I noticed way more water than usual.  They only do big water releases a few times a year.  I expected to see a lot of kayakers and rafters but only saw a few.



I stopped again a few miles down the road to check out this swaying walking bridge.  It bounces up and down as you walk on it. 



There are some side roads that run pretty much along 129 for a ways.  They are way curvier and more scenic than 129 at this point.



I ended up in Robbinsville where I topped of with gas.  I decided to eat lunch at Wendy's while I decded on what to do next.  I was considering riding Winding Stair road but after looking at the time and calculating when I would get home I decided to just head over the Skyway.

143 leading to the Skyway was a blast as usual.  The Skyway itself was scenic as always but a 10 horsepower scooter is not the best bike for the uphill parts of this road as I sometimes could only go about 30 MPH.  Luckily that was only in a few spots.  Most of the time I had no problem doing the speed limit.  I did stop a few times to take some pics.



.



Then it was back to the campground where I left my truck.  That was the end of my ride.  I was glad to be sitting in the air conditioned comfort of my truck for the mostly boring trip back to Huntsville.

Some thoughts and comments about this trip and touring on a tiny scooter coming up.

« Last Edit: May 16, 2017, 03:43:38 PM by klaviator »

Offline klaviator

  • Mod Squad
  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 1143
« Reply #24 on: May 16, 2017, 01:28:33 PM »
So this was my first "tour" on this scooter.  I did a number of trips on my old Aprilia Sport City 250 but I consider that a mid size scooter and it was easily capable of riding on the interstate.  I once did 550 miles of mostly interstate in one day on the Aprilia.  The Kymco, with less than half the horsepower of the Aprilia is in a different league.  I have done a few day rides on the Kymco but this was my first trip. 

So how did it do?  I ended up riding 915 miles in 5 days with a high of 223 miles and low of around 160.  If not for the rain that passed through Friday and Saturday I would have easily been over 1000 miles.  By big bike standards that's not much and it's less than I expected to ride but I really didn't have a real plan.  Looking back it's easy to see why the low miles.  The biggest limiting factor was not so much the bike as my butt.  Well I guess the seat plays a role here.  The seat is fine on short trips around town but I can only sit on it for so long.  So I stopped a lot.  Since I'm constantly trying to get the "perfect" picture, stopping a lot isn't normally an issue for me.  If I'm trying to get somewhere it can be. 

I guess that touring on a tiny bike just takes a different mindset than on a big bike.  It's more about enjoying the ride than putting in the big miles.  Small scooters are fantastic for just exploring.  It's so easy to see something and whip a U turn t0 go check it out or take a pic.  Since speeds are generally slower it you tend to see more.  I saw a few things I never noticed before on roads i have ridden several times before. 

So what kind of speeds did I run at?  The speedometer on this scooter like most scooters, is very optimistic.  On flat ground it will do 65-68 on the speedo.  Actual top speed is probably high 50s, maybe 60.  Going up hill will slow it down.  The worst I saw was around 30 on some long steep hills.  Since I never got on the interstate speed was generally a factor as I could normally run the speed limit or the speed of traffic.  I spent a lot of time on the BRP where the Speed limit of 45 was about perfect.  On my Versys I feel like I need to run 55-65.  That could get me a ticket although so far it hasn't.  When on a small scooter it just feels like you are going faster so it's not boring going slow.

Fuel Mileage and range.  You would think a 150cc scooter would get fantastic fuel mileage.  Some of the newer fuel injected ones get 80-100 mpg.  I got between 63 and 71 MPG on this trip.  With a tiny 1.3 gallon ntank range is an issue especially since my fuel gauge doesn't work.  So I was normally stopping to get gas and only putting in between a half gallon to a gallon.  I did carry a one gallon gas can in that little cooler on the floorboards.  I only used it twice but it did a lot for my peace of mind when I was in the middle of nowhere with over 60 miles since the last fill up.  One PITA with this scooter is the fuel filler being under the seat.  I had a bag on rear seat but I set it up so it was bungeed directly to the seat so I didn't have to remove it to fill up.

The fun factor.  There were times when I would have preferred to be on a bigger, more comfortable bike and other times when I wished I was on a faster bike.  Overall though I really enjoyed this trip and am really glad I finally got around to doing it.  Doing a tour on a tiny bike has been on my bucket list for a few years now.

Lessons learned.  The key to having fun on a trip on a tiny bike is to plan a trip around the bikes strengths, not it's weaknesses.  The most fun parts were cruising along on the BRP where there was so much to look at, exploring out of the way roads I wouldn't normally check out, and really twisty roads

One of the highlights of the trip was riding Green River Cove Road.  That's the one I took all the pics of the hairpins.  Here's a map:



I have ridden this road on my KLR and Versys.  The Super 8 was the most fun.  The corners are so tight that the super 8 was just the most fun.  I would have ridden up and down a few more times if it hadn't started raining.

There was also a sense of accomplishment to this ride.  Thousands of rider go out and tour on their big bikes.  I saw no one in those 5 days touring on a bike anywhere near as small as my scooter.  While there are people who have made much longer trips on even smaller bikes, this was a first for me. 

Will I do more tours on small scooters?  Absolutely, but it may be on another scooter.  The Super 8 now has 27,700 miles on it and that's a lot of miles on a 150cc air cooled motor that has spent much of it's life being run really hard.  I'll replace it with something that has a little more power, a bigger gas tank and hopefully more comfortable seat.

A big thanks to all who have been following along, liked my posts or responded in this thread.  I hope I have caused some "scooter envy" and maybe this report will get a few more people to give small scooters a try.

I hope to see ya'll at the upcoming Bamarides Gymkhanna.  I'll be there on my Super 8 having a blast


« Last Edit: May 17, 2017, 08:23:52 AM by klaviator »

Offline jrobinson

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 995
« Reply #25 on: May 16, 2017, 02:11:51 PM »
Great report Win. I enjoy your blend of very nice pics and narration. Good to hear the pros and cons of riding a small scooter on this type of ride.


We are planning a BRP ride in July, so I'll be studying this report along with any others I find. 


Don't have to worry about me having scooter envy, although I do have rider envy. LOL  I would enjoy the ride on a bike I'm comfortable riding. A standard, cruiser or touring bike would be my preference.

Offline klaviator

  • Mod Squad
  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 1143
« Reply #26 on: May 16, 2017, 03:13:41 PM »
I guess I wasn't too early for all the photographers at Deal's Gap.




Offline klaviator

  • Mod Squad
  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 1143
« Reply #27 on: May 17, 2017, 02:06:44 PM »
Great report Win. I enjoy your blend of very nice pics and narration. Good to hear the pros and cons of riding a small scooter on this type of ride.


We are planning a BRP ride in July, so I'll be studying this report along with any others I find. 


Don't have to worry about me having scooter envy, although I do have rider envy. LOL  I would enjoy the ride on a bike I'm comfortable riding. A standard, cruiser or touring bike would be my preference.

I don't really expect for a lot of people on this forum to trade in their motorcycles for a scooter.  Scooters aren't for everyone.  Small scooters are really designed for riding around urban areas.  They are perfect for that unless you need to get on the interstate.  There is a reason why not many people tour on them. 

On the other hand, there are a lot of people on other forums who rode motorcycles their whole lives and decided to try scooters when they got too old to handle their heavy motorcycles.  Most of them post that they wished they had tried scooters earlier because they were way more fun and capable than they had thought. 

I guess I'm trying to get people to try different types of bikes.  If you have never ridden a Harley, a sport bike, a dirt bike or dual sport, a super moto, a touring bike, or whatever, then you really don't know what you are missing.  You may try it and not like it but at least you will know what you are missing.

As for comfort.  The super 8 was actually pretty comfortable most of the time.  It was only if I rode too long or towards the end of the day when it became an issue.  I will never do an Iron Butt on it :o

Another huge advantage for someone who likes to take pictures like I do is that it is super easy to whip a U turn on even the narrowest road to go back and take that pic.  It's also real easy to move the bike into just the right position for the picture.

Changing to a different topic; Lodging.  Of course the cheapest thing to do is camp but not everyone camps.  I camp sometimes but on this trip it would have been too hard to fit all my gear on the tiny scooter.  So I motelled it.  I used to just wing it on trio and find a motel room when I was ready to stop.  This gives you a lot of flexibility but you may have trouble finding a room in some areas and you will almost certainly pay more.  I did find out some interesting things about motel pricing.  One way to go is use Booking.com, Expedia, trip advisor or some other internet site.  Do these sites save you money?  Best I can tell is sometimes yes and sometimes no.  I spent the first night at a Red Roof Inn in Asheville.  I got a really nice room for around 65 bucks total on Booking.com.  I asked the lady at the desk what the price would have been if I just walked in and she told my about twice as much.  The next couple of places I stayed were not chain motels.  I found them on line but booked directly.  The prices where about the same.  I paid $90 in Blowing Rock and $75 in Chimney Rock.  I booked my room in Bryson City on Booking.com for around $65.  It was also not a chain motel Keep in mind that the last two motels where Fri and Sat nights when prices are normally higher.  Also keep in mind that some of the non chain motels don't book through the internet sites.

I was happy with all the motels and would stay at them again.  Motels were by far my biggest expense and totalled under 300 bucks for 4 nights. 
« Last Edit: May 17, 2017, 03:04:51 PM by klaviator »

Offline Chuck A.

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 300
« Reply #28 on: May 28, 2017, 11:14:47 AM »
 Love to read these reports!  One day you should combine them all and put them in a book. 🏍👏
DAMMIT TOOL:
 Any  handy tool that you grab and throw across the garage while yelling  "DAMMIT" at the top of your lungs. It is also the next tool that you  will need. Chitza

Summary food for thought:
"There is no substitute for laminar flow in which a helmet is the primary disturbance.'- kdtrull

Offline klaviator

  • Mod Squad
  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 1143
« Reply #29 on: May 28, 2017, 02:09:50 PM »
Love to read these reports!  One day you should combine them all and put them in a book. 🏍👏

Thanks.  I don't know about putting them in a book.  I really think that putting ride reports in a forum makes them better that a book.  First is all the pics you can post in a ride report.  Second are the cool emoticons and links that you can just click on.  Third, and certainly not least is that ride reports in a forum are two way.  You can get feedback and carry on a two way conversation, something you don't get in a book.

As for combining my ride reports, I have already done that Here: http://advrider.com/index.php?threads/full-throttle-touring-150-through-the-rocket-city.647784/
« Last Edit: May 28, 2017, 03:07:18 PM by klaviator »