On Wednesday, October 23, 2013 we went to see the now closed Brushy Mountain State Penitentiary.
We took off from our home in North Knoxville at 10am. The skies were overcast and the temperature was cool, right around 48 degrees.
We rode north on Broadway and then took Norris Freeway. We stopped to enjoy the views at Norris Dam.
After leaving Norris Dam, we proceeded on into Lake City stopping briefly at Weigels to fuel up and eat a light snack.
After our stop, we took 25W north into Caryville where we took old 63 up to 63.
63 took us north into Huntsville where we ate lunch at one of our favorite restaurants, The Fireside Restaurant.
The folks here are always friendly and the food is great home cooking. Inside they had a blazing fire in the fireplace which felt great since the temperature had, by this time, dropped to 42 degrees.
After filling up with this great fare, we layered our gear on and headed out to continue our ride.
We took 27 South, rode through Elgin, Sunbright and through Wartburg.
In this short video, Jeff talks about Gerbing’s heated gear:
From 27 South, we took 116 through Petros and out to Brushy Mountain Prison.
Brushy Mountain was established in 1896 and closed June 11, 2009. What will happen with the prison grounds hasn’t been decided yet, but the chances of it being turned into a distillery and museum look good. You can find more information about the potential development plans HERE.
Here is a video about Brushy:
We pulled up to the prison front gate and were told by one of the employees at the site that no one was permitted past the gates. So we took some photos and talked about what it must have been like to be imprisoned here.
Here is a video (uploaded to You Tube by Two Seven Two Media) of Mark Collie and Tim McGraw playing at Brushy. (I think this was in 2001 but correct me in the comments if I’m wrong.)
After taking our photos, we got back on our bikes and continued on 116, also known as the Devil’s Triangle.
The Devil’s Triangle is a very challenging road with many tight curves, switchbacks and steep drop offs. If you like riding the Dragon then you should also try 116. It is a must do!
After the Triangle, we stopped briefly in Briceville at the local Post Office.
Across from the post office is the beautiful Briceville Community Church.
We then got back on our bikes and proceeded into Lake City where we took 25W south into Clinton.
Then we took Clinton Highway back home. We arrived home at 5pm and our total ride was 182 miles.
You can view our complete list of Day Rides HERE.