Friday, January 26, 2007
Return to Wolf Pen Gap
As I have mentioned before, when I first got my bike, I took a spill on GA Hwy 180 near Wolf Pen Gap. I have never been back on that particular rode since the incident. Today I decided it was time to return to Hwy 180 and prove to myself I could handle it.
I set out on Hwy 9 North which takes you thru Dawsonville, hometown to Bill Elliott.
The trip was beautiful. Leaving Hwy 9 north of Dahlonega, I picked up Hwy 60 to Suchess. Hwy 60 is a great ride in itself with some nice twisties and beautiful mountain scenery. Just out of Suchess, I picked up Hwy 180 and began to face my personal demon. The demon just wasn't as mean as I recalled. At first I was hesitant and second guessing myself in the twisties, but finally settled down and began enjoying the road. Hwy 180 is about 7 miles of twisties. I'm told it has the most for any road in Georgia, you be the judge.
I'm glad to report I over come my trepidations and rode Hwy 180 without any spills this time. I followed it to the interection of Hwy 348 and took it towards Helen, Georgia.
I was delighted to find that Hwy 348 "The Richard Russell Scenic By-Way" is also a gorgeous ride. I was suprised to find that there was ice on the sides of the rock walls next to the highway. Yes, it gets cold in North Georgia!
Once in Helen it was time to eat. Helen is a touristy town in North Georgia built to look like a german alpine village. Finding a place to eat isn't difficult. Chosing a place is more the task. I decided on the Cafe International.
After riding 70 miles in 40 degree weather, a hot ham and cheese sandwich, a bowl of chili, and a hot cup of coffee was just the trick.
The lunch was good, Helen was practically deserted. Once I finished my meal, I was back in the saddle. There are a couple hundred routes to chose from back home. I elected to return the way I came and have one more go at Hwy 180. It was even more fun on the way back. I knew I could ride it without issue, so now I was comfortable and riding with bit more speed. I wasn't riding anywhere near the speeds my friends on the crotch rockets would ride it, but I wasn't holding up traffic either :)