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Old 09-12-2019, 09:22 AM
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Blue Ridge Parkway trip report.

Got back yesterday from a Jeep camping trip up the entire length of the Blue Ridge Parkway. I started in Cherokee, NC and ended near Staunton, VA. It took 5 days and 1,400 miles to do the trip and that wasn't nearly enough time to see and do all there is along the BRP.

It was a solo trip as I ended up with a lot more vacation time than my wife this year. You can check out the photos at the link below. Click on the first photo, then click the circle I icon at the top right. Then just click the photo to scroll through and read the captions.

If I was giving out awards for the trip, first place would go to the Jeep. You could have made this trip in any vehicle but any vehicle isn't a Jeep! There is just something about cruising in a Jeep.

Second place would go to the Dometic CFX-40 fridge. It was plenty big and had more room than I needed. If you don't have a fridge and are on the fence about getting one, do it, it is awesome. No worry about water getting into my sandwich meat, cheese or anything. I was able to go at least 12 hours between starting my Jeep but next up is a dual battery system.

Third place would go to the Gas One butane/propane stove. It beats Coleman by a mile! It is only 8,000 BTU and from my Googling a home cooktop is only 7,000 to 8,000 BTU. So why do we need camp stoves that are 15,000 BTU? You would have to turn it to half power to be at max power of a home cooktop. You would have to turn it nearly off to actually cook with it. My Coleman, to quote a reviewer on Amazon, goes from nearly off to the fires of Hades with just barely a touch. There is no fine tuning of the flame. The Gas One adjusts very well, as well as my home gas cooktop. If you need two burners, get two of these.

Finally, I will say it would take a month to really do and see everything along the Blue Ridge Parkway. I averaged 100 miles per day and that was way to fast. It actually took me 7 hours to go 150 miles and I felt like I didn't see much along the way. I didn't get to do much hiking at all or see the waterfalls.

Next time I will continue up the BRP and to the 105 miles of Skyline Drive as well.

Click this link to view the photos.
Blue Ridge Parkway photos

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Old 09-12-2019, 10:21 AM   #2
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Awesome pictures. Thank you for sharing.

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Old 09-12-2019, 01:29 PM   #3
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Looks wonderful. You missed the peak leaf peepers season. What is the make of that cool looking foldable table in your tent? And how do you like that tailgate table, what brand is it?
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Old 09-12-2019, 03:26 PM
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Looks wonderful. You missed the peak leaf peepers season. What is the make of that cool looking foldable table in your tent? And how do you like that tailgate table, what brand is it?
Yes, peak season should be in another month maybe. But I have other plans for October so it was now or never.

The table in the tent is an REI brand table. The tailgate table is a Springtail Solutions table. They are both great. Love the tailgate table especially. Great for cooking, doing dishes, assembling a sandwich or whatever.
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Old 09-12-2019, 07:17 PM   #5
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Your Parkway story brings back memories. I pedaled the length of it in 1997 and Skyline Drive after that. We had started out in Gulf Breeze, FL and finished in Portland, ME. I liked that commercial trucks were not permitted on the Parkway and the speed limit was 45.

Lots of fog in the early mornings made some of the climbs seem easier. We couldn't see how steep the grade was but we were in 1st gear and going slow. I think we were gone for 20 days total.
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Old 09-12-2019, 08:58 PM   #6
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RoadiJeff you ever ride the Natchez Trace? Way more tame elevation wise but no commercial traffic and all vehicles overtaking bikes have to use oncoming lane. I did it in April a few years back and it was just amazing
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Old 09-13-2019, 06:10 AM   #7
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Wonderful report there. Wife and I di it back in 2015 from Skyline Drive (Front Royale, VA) to the end of Blue Ridge Parkway (BRP), in Cherokee, NC.
Phenomenal weather events and wonderfully, great people along the way. WE stayed in hotels and ate in restaurants though.

Another fun ride while off road (tame really) is the Hinetooga Loop that leaves the BRP just past Maggie Valley heading south, and drops you into Cherokee. Mostly dirt roads,very scenic and a cool (temperature) ride with lots to see.

Greate times and sights, thank for the report!
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Old 09-13-2019, 06:23 AM   #8
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My favorite road --- thanks for the pics and report.

I go exploring around there (and other places), trying to imagine I'm back in my ancestors' day, seeing some of it the way they did, unspoiled.
I go to towns they founded, places they fought, died. Always learn/see something new.
Van Meter Pioneers in America
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Old 09-13-2019, 08:25 AM   #9
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Looks/sounds like it was a great trip. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 09-13-2019, 10:33 AM   #10
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Awesome job of documenting your trip.
We live in Lexington Va which is just minutes from the BRP. Many days or evenings we decide to take a ride in the wrangler and get on the BRP for an hour or two. It never gets old.
Also did skyline last month and enjoyed that as well.

Thanks for visiting the Commonwealth of Virginia and come back any time.
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Old 09-13-2019, 11:26 AM   #11
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OMGosh, What an amazing photo journal you have made of your gorgeous trip!
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Old 09-13-2019, 11:31 AM   #12
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PS... Your meals looked delicious!
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Old 09-13-2019, 12:56 PM
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PS... Your meals looked delicious!
Thanks, they actually were and I am not much of a cook. I am getting my wife to teach me how to make more things. Especially 1 pot/skillet meals.
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Old 09-13-2019, 01:03 PM   #14
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Thanks, they actually were and I am not much of a cook. I am getting my wife to teach me how to make more things. Especially 1 pot/skillet meals.
Get a Dutch oven and your world opens up...

https://www.amazon.com/GSI-Outdoors-...HAS?th=1&psc=1

Nothing like fresh baked rolls and biscuits when you're outdoors.
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Old 09-13-2019, 03:48 PM   #15
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That looks like a terrific trip! I've done it on the Harley, but never in a Jeep!
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Old 09-13-2019, 04:29 PM   #16
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Nice. I have a place at SML but have yet to explore Roanoke
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Old 09-13-2019, 08:21 PM   #17
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Quote:
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RoadiJeff you ever ride the Natchez Trace? Way more tame elevation wise but no commercial traffic and all vehicles overtaking bikes have to use oncoming lane. I did it in April a few years back and it was just amazing
Yes, I pedaled a large section of it about 7-8 years ago. We started in Nashville and did 1000km round trip. Except for the first 100 miles or so it was rather level. I really enjoyed it.
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Old 09-16-2019, 02:52 PM   #18
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also I came to the same conclusion and bought a Gas One. This weekend will be the first time running it off butane , hoping it will work just as well without the hassle of the hose and external tank.
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Old 09-16-2019, 03:22 PM   #19
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Very cool, thanks for sharing! I had just passed thru Cherokee to Asheville this summer with the wife and kids; only three days in the lower BRP...loved every minute of it!

So much to see and do...can't wait to go again!!
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Old 09-16-2019, 04:13 PM   #20
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impressive trip. thanks for sharing!
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Old 09-17-2019, 06:25 AM   #21
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That looks like a terrific trip! I've done it on the Harley, but never in a Jeep!
It's much different on a bike.

I've done the entirety of the BRP on an '82 Suzuki GS1100G, '94 Kawasaki Voyager, '97 Goldwing, 2000 F-150, '01 Kawasaki Concours, '02 Goldwing, '04 Goldwing, '08 JK, '11 PowerWagon, and '14 JKU.
Each one a unique experience.

Back on the Suzuki I had gotten there after slaying The Dragon and was sill full of spit and vinegar. Ran into a ranger on the Pkwy, same one at lookouts over and over. The Pkwy was a newly completed thing back then, nobody on it but me and him. He comes over to me at a rest stop and says, "I know you want to light'er up ---- go ahead, I'll be here a few more minutes."
Oh what fun it is to ride....

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