Just Labradors banner

1 - 20 of 24 Posts
2

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Lynn and I got back home this afternoon. We had a great time on the trip - probably the best weather we've had in our 9 years of attending the event. We went to Highlands, NC - in the south western mountains - and met about 25 other couples. We traveled down with 3 other couples and 1 friend who went by himself since his wife was on another trip.

We all arrive on Thursday afternoon and then spend Friday, Saturday and Sunday morning cruising the wonderful roads there in NC, TN, GA and SC. We have a set route to take and meet for lunch along the way, then return to the base hotel in Highlands where we party a bit, walk to dinner and then party a bit more. :D

On Friday, we drove up to the Mother of All Road Courses - The Tail of The Dragon. The Dragon is actually Highway 129 between TN and NC. The "infamous" stretch is 11 miles with 318 significant curves. On any given day it is filled with motorcycles and cars making "controlled" runs through the Dragon. At the NC end is a resort called Deal's Gap Motorcycle Resort. There is also a Tree of Shame where they nail a piece of your motorcycle or car if you have a mishap on the road.

I have a few pics that Lynn took as we were driving. First is a map of the Dragon - it is a beautiful road, lined with trees, steep drop-offs and lots of tight turns.



Here are two that show what the corners look like.





This last photo was taken as we were driving down the Blue Ridge Parkway in VA on Wednesday - it was an overcast day that day (the only one of the trip) so it doesn't reflect the striking beauty of the view. Somehow, this pictures makes me think of Kelli. I can't figure out why. ??? ;)



I actually have a pretty cool video that's about a minute of a run we made down one road on Sunday - but don't have a host to hang it on. If I find someplace to host it, I'll put it up.

There are two guys who stand along the Dragon and take photos. I checked and the one has the photos up - I placed my order tonight. He has two neat shots of our car. Hopefully the other one has a good shot, too, and posts them this week. Once I get them, I'll post the "action shot" of the car conquering the Dragon. :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,079 Posts
So Mark, how fast can you take a curve like that? Before you did this for the first time, did you do any practice driving? Or is this a Y-chromosome sort of thing.
 
2

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Rangermom said:
So Mark, how fast can you take a curve like that? Before you did this for the first time, did you do any practice driving? Or is this a Y-chromosome sort of thing.
I've driven quite a bit over the years, had a few "lessons" on slalom courses and closed circuits and spent a lot of time pushing our Z3 through the curves. My first run through the Dragon was pretty slow just to get used to it. That was 9 years ago.

And, one of the rules we always follow is to stay in our own lanes - no crossing the yellow lines. Doing that will ensure you are not invited back - it's just too dangerous with all the blind curves.

The sharpest corner in the pics is probably about a 25-30 mph turn. The key is getting to the turn, braking and then powering out of the turn. You've also got to position your car to try to "shave" the curves - try to make the run more of a straight line than a curve.

And, as for the Y chromosome, we have some fantastic women drivers in our group who have tamed the Dragon quite a few times. :D
 
J

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Cool!

Mark, have you seen the movie cars? It reminded me of Doc Hudson teaching Lightning McQueen how to go around a corner. :D
 
D

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
2LabsInNEPA said:
Rangermom said:
So Mark, how fast can you take a curve like that? Before you did this for the first time, did you do any practice driving? Or is this a Y-chromosome sort of thing.
I've driven quite a bit over the years, had a few "lessons" on slalom courses and closed circuits and spent a lot of time pushing our Z3 through the curves. My first run through the Dragon was pretty slow just to get used to it. That was 9 years ago.

And, one of the rules we always follow is to stay in our own lanes - no crossing the yellow lines. Doing that will ensure you are not invited back - it's just too dangerous with all the blind curves.

The sharpest corner in the pics is probably about a 25-30 mph turn. The key is getting to the turn, braking and then powering out of the turn. You've also got to position your car to try to "shave" the curves - try to make the run more of a straight line than a curve.

And, as for the Y chromosome, we have some fantastic women drivers in our group who have tamed the Dragon quite a few times. :D
Roads like that make me wish I still had my 356 SC. Looks like it was fun!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
307 Posts
The Dragon...every car enthusiast dream......

Have you upgraded your tires yet? if not what do you have on them now.

Great pix BTW I love them!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,573 Posts
my husband said they use the "dragon" to do some mini cooper testing on too. he has one of those for his daily driver and i can just see him salivating when i showed him the pics you posted. i think every car he gets is a little smaller then the one before. can't wait to see more pics.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,336 Posts
Terrific pictures, Mark! :) I am glad you two were able get to your vacation, with the snowstorm and all.
 
2

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
Serg4u said:
The Dragon...every car enthusiast dream......

Have you upgraded your tires yet? if not what do you have on them now.

Great pix BTW I love them!
I'm running Goodyear Eagle F1s now - and absolutely love them. I've also used Bridgestone Pole Position S03s, the original Michelin s and a set of really bad Pirelli's. I'll probably put F1s on again. :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,007 Posts
I'm glad I didn't have to do that road in my F-150 loaded with my cook gear on my trip I made, there might have been a dutch oven nailed to that tree. ;D I had some curves not quite that bad I had to do, at least it's flat and open and you can see for a mile or more around the curve, you can hit them on the low side and keep the speed up, saves fuel ya know. ;D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
44,122 Posts
OOOOO, nice pics!!! Glad you guys had fun!! :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
307 Posts
2LabsInNEPA said:
Serg4u said:
The Dragon...every car enthusiast dream......

Have you upgraded your tires yet? if not what do you have on them now.

Great pix BTW I love them!
I'm running Goodyear Eagle F1s now - and absolutely love them. I've also used Bridgestone Pole Position S03s, the original Michelin s and a set of really bad Pirelli's. I'll probably put F1s on again. :D
Very nice. I have a set of BF-Goodrich KDW's....they are not as good as the F1's but great for my car. I'm also on tein SS coilovers. My car isn't 1/2 of what your car is lol, but its fun to be able to pass cars on turns with ease.

Post the rest of the pix when you can.
 
1 - 20 of 24 Posts
Top