On Tuesday, July 16, 2013 we took another Day Ride. Our destination was lunch at Clyde’s Restaurant in Waynesville, North Carolina.

We left our North Knoxville home at 10:15am. We headed south on Alcoa Highway to Maryville where we took 321 toward the mountains. We stopped briefly to fill our tanks and get a snack.

We rode through Walland and Townsend then took 73 through the mountains. The traffic along 73 was slow and mildly congested. We stopped for the next two photos along the way before reaching Gatlinburg.

We reached 441 just south of Gatlinburg. 441 goes directly up and over the Smokey Mountains and the traffic was still congested. We stopped several times for more scenic views.

We finally made it over the mountains and into Cherokee, North Carolina. We stopped in downtown Cherokee and remembered the first rally we went to before the Casino was built. Now, Cherokee centers more around the Casino which appears to be thriving. Everything changes.

We rode through Cherokee and then took 19 into Maggie Valley. We’ve been to Maggie Valley many times to visit “The Wheels Through Time” Motorcycle Museum (a must see), but today we continued through town and onto Waynesville.

Since we were hungry, we rode through downtown heading to Clydes.

As we pulled into the parking lot we could see that the restaurant was still busy, and it was already 2:30pm, so that had to be a good sign.

When we entered, we were told to grab a seat and found the staff to be very friendly.

Jeff ordered the daily special of pork, dressing and mashed potatoes and I got a salad and veggie plate.

The food was GREAT! Some of the best we’ve had in a while. Eating at Clyde’s in Waynesville, North Carolina is a MUST DO!

After lunch, we rode back into downtown Waynesville, a thriving, quaint town with an artist feel. We walked around awhile and snapped photos.

By the time we finished looking downtown, it was 4:00pm and we had a long way yet to ride. We got back on the bikes, fueled up and headed north on 209.

We continued north on 209, riding the section called the Rattler’s Tail. If you like steep, sweeping curves non stop for 29 miles, this road is for you! It is not as aggressive as the Dragon, but similar in the tightness of the curves and extreme concentration needed to navigate it.

We stopped at a scenic overlook along the route for a few snap shots.

After taking this quick break, 209 finally brought us into Hot Springs, North Carolina, a small town with tubing outlets and restaurants. It has a real hippie feel to it.

From Hot Springs, we took 25/70 back to Tennessee where the road was closed for bridge repair.

We took the River Road, mostly two lanes but sometimes one lane with gravel which brought us back to 25/70 in Del Rio. From there we continued into Newport.

It was a little after 5pm when we rode through Newport, so we continued on 25/70 to Dandridge where we stopped for a much needed cold drink. By now the temperature was right at 90 degrees.

After our break we continued on 25/70 back to Asheville Highway and then back into Knoxville. We got back home at 7:00pm and our total ride was 240 miles.

Jeff always says it has to be at least 250 miles before we can say it was a death ride. But today we both agreed that this Waynesville ride qualified as a death ride! We loved the ride and all the great things we saw, but we were tired and road weary and glad to be home.

You view our entire list of DAY RIDES by CLICKING HERE.


  1. My friends and I are staying at Deer Country Cabins and I have been researching day trips around Waynesville. I have been to the Dragon several times and we will eventually make our way west. I appreciate your detail and look forward to riding the same roads you mentioned.

  2. Thanks for your comment Kevin. Sounds like you are having a wonderful trip! You’ve love these roads too.

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