The Loops

All loops begin and end in Chattanooga, Tennessee


Cumberland Plateau Loop

Cumberland Plateau Loop

Distance: 145 miles • Elevation Variance: 1654' • Fatigue Factor: Moderate

Today’s route was on another beautiful day with scenery that only a few motorcyclists will have the opportunity to experience. I traversed mostly two-lane state highways up and down several mountains and along the banks of the Tennessee River. This loop only takes about four hours to ride, plus the additional time for stops along the way. With that being said, let’s hit the road as I recount today’s ride!

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East Valley Road Loop

East Valley Road Loop

Distance: 136 miles • Elevation Variance: 1404' • Fatigue Factor: Mild

After completing a few of the more physically and mentally demanding loops I was ready for today’s less demanding and more relaxing ride. I spent the day either riding the stretched out two-lane highways or beautiful secluded country roads. In the most rural section I had to be careful to watch for gravel washed out in the road from driveways and for dogs that may not be in fenced-in yards. The only part of the route that required special riding skills was the descent down Dayton Mountain, which for a short distance is laced with sharp curves. This loop is one that can easily be done between breakfast and lunch or between lunch and supper. Come join me as we take a relaxing ride through the country!

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Eddie's Choice Loop

Eddie's Choice Loop

Distance: 181 miles • Elevation Variance: 449' • Fatigue Factor: Mild

One of the advantages of being the creator of anything from a work of art to a Bikers’ Dozen Loop is the freedom of doing it the way you want. Today’s scenic loop is a composite of the things that are my favorite ingredients for a great days ride. The things that make for my favorite rides are slightly curvy two-lane highways through mostly farm country, places along the route that other bikers congregate, some mountain riding in cooler temperatures, a meal at a good small town restaurant, at least one section of quite curvy roads, and maybe an interesting place to stop for a visit along the way. I have taken each of these ingredients to create the loop that I rode today, and invite you to ride with me as I take you through my ideal ride. Today’s loop can be ridden in just a little over a half day and should provide riders with enough time to check out some of Chattanooga’s attractions afterward. Well, lets do it!

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Fall Creek Falls Loop

Fall Creek Falls Loop

Distance: 200 miles • Elevation Variance: 1755' • Fatigue Factor: Moderate

Today’s route offered more variance in terrain, scenery, and riding style than most loops in the Bikers’ Dozen. The riding varied from long straight stretches on two-lane state highways to curvy mountain roads that kept my eyes glued on the pavement without a sideways glance. I cruised in the flat valleys, dipped and turned on the mountaintops, and then paralleled the Tennessee River. I viewed homes many folk would call mansions and other dwellings in the deep country that were probably two-room homes, but nestled in settings that would make wealthy people envious. I had lunch at the Cumberland Mountain State Park and passed through the middle of the very popular Fall Creek Falls State Park. Come join me as we ride the entire route within the State of Tennessee, and experience the type of riding only motorcyclists can fully enjoy.

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Georgia Mountains Loop

Georgia Mountains Loop

Distance: 329 miles • Elevation Variance: 3155' • Fatigue Factor: High

Today’s loop selection is the longest one day loop of the Bikers’ Dozen, and one that will be a favorite with riders who enjoy spending time in the mountains breathing the cool mountain air. The majority of the riding today was in North Georgia Mountains with some time in the mountains of North Carolina. I rode many miles in the Nantahala National Forest and the Chattahoochee National Forest, made for pleasant riding in natural settings. The shade provided by the heavy vegetation added to the lower temperatures of the high elevations for a cool riding day. My plan of taking the day off yesterday to visit Ruby Falls, Rock City, and the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum before this longer ride turned out to be a good plan, since it served to re-charge me physically and mentally for my all day trek. Besides the beauty of the ride, one of the highlights of the day was the number of my cycle brethren I met at the rest stops I made along the way. Come along as we explore some of the best motorcycle riding in the eastern United States.

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Little River Canyon Loop

Little River Canyon Loop

Distance: 167 miles • Elevation Variance: 1249' • Fatigue Factor: Moderate

Today’s loop took me along the base of Lookout Mountain, through a north Georgia farmland valley, up Lookout Mountain with a few switchbacks, along the top of the Lookout Mountain, back down the mountain into Alabama for some country road riding, back up Lookout Mountain, along the breathtaking Little River Canyon Parkway, crossing Lake Weiss, back into Georgia on two-lane state highways, and then back to my starting point. It was one of the most relaxing options of the Bikers’ Dozen Loops and one that will take Bikers’ Dozen riders places that most folks in Chattanooga have never been. Riding on the rim of Little River Canyon is worth the trip in itself. Hop on board for our excursion that’s Alabama bound!

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Sand Mountain Loop

Sand Mountain Loop

Distance: 214 miles • Elevation Variance: 1661' • Fatigue Factor: Moderate

Even though today’s ride was one of the longer loops it was one that was especially easy to ride and very relaxing. After riding one of the more strenuous loops in the very curvy North Georgia Mountains yesterday I was in the mood for a Bikers’ Dozen Loop that provided me a day to relax on some pleasant country roads. Today’s ride transported me across Lookout Mountain in Tennessee, Georgia, and Alabama, southwest to the backcountry of Alabama, and then over Sand Mountain on sparsely traveled two-lane highways. As I then headed north I crossed back into Tennessee and into some gentle riding mountain roads that served to continue my day of relaxation since the higher elevations and breezes cooled me off on a day that was slightly warm. By the day’s end I passed through parts of Tennessee, Georgia, and Alabama and crossed the Tennessee River two times along the way. Taking almost six hours to ride, plus the additional time for stops along the way, this loop is a little longer than some. Come on a relaxing ride with me as we head to Sand Mountain!

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Suches Loop

Suches Loop

Distance: 231 miles • Elevation Variance: 2625' • Fatigue Factor: High

Today’s route was one of those trips that many cycle riders will only dream of riding. The day of riding provided a combination of beautiful scenery, quaint small towns, curvy mountain roads, interesting local shops, great local restaurants, and a motorcycle-only resort to top it all off. This route takes about eight hours, including stops along the way, thus it should be set aside as one of the all-day trips. On your ride I recommend stopping at the TWO (Two Wheels Only) Resort for a time of fellowship and sharing with other cyclists from all over the eastern part of our country. Well let’s hit the road on paper as I take you on my ride that I hope kindles your desire to hit the road on two wheels!

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Tellico Loop

Tellico Loop

Distance: 196 miles • Elevation Variance: 1094' • Fatigue Factor: Moderate

What a day this has been! Today’s scenic loop took me on back roads with a mix of straight and curvy sections of two-lane highway, some parts with very sharp curves. I also passed along a beautiful, scenic section of the whitewater rapids of the Ocoee River. In the most rural sections I had to be careful to watch for gravel washed-out in the road from driveways and for dogs that may not be in fenced-in yards. This loop took the majority of the day to negotiate, mainly because of its abundance of curves. Enough said; hit the road with me as I recount the journey- one you may want to take!

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The Dragon's Tail Loop

The Dragon's Tail Loop

Distance: 258 miles • Elevation Variance: 3895' • Fatigue Factor: High

This was the day I had been looking forward to; it was the day of The Dragon with the Cherahala Skyway thrown in as a bonus. Today’s route will certainly go down as my favorite Bikers’ Dozen loop and most likely the best riding day of my life. There have been magazine articles written about much of today’s loop and I definitely see why. I was glad I picked a day after one of my short loop rides because I was rather tired at the end of the day, but it was worth it. Since this was a rather strenuous ride I made numerous stops along the way and enjoyed fellowship with fellow riders at most every one of them. I met cycle riders who came from every part of the country and a few from as far away as Canada. Looking back on the day I leaned into curve after curve, rode 43 miles on a mountain crest highway called the Cherahala Skyway, and then experienced the one of a kind, internationally known, Dragons Tail. In this stretch I found myself buried deep into motorcycle country and did the “low five” literally hundreds of times before I parked my bike at the end of the day. The Dragon and the fellowship alone were worth the trip. So sit back as I recap my ride and one that could be the ride of your life!

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The Great Smoky Mountains Loop

The Great Smoky Mountains Loop

Distance: 433 miles • Elevation Variance: 5374' • Fatigue Factor: High

The last two days made for a trip that will get filed under the category of “my most unforgettable ride”. This long loop offers some of every type of riding desired by most bikers, and no Interstate. Not every Bikers’ Dozen participant will choose to ride this overnight trip, but for those who do, I believe it will be one of the most unforgettable rides they will ever make. This trip took me on the Foothills Parkway, over the Great Smoky Mountains, on the Blue Ridge Parkway, through the Cherokee Indian Reservation, by the Fort Mountain State Park, through the Nantahala, Chattahoochee, Pisgah, and Cherokee National Forests, plus some of the most popular motorcycling two-lane mountain roads in the country. At the beginning and end of the trip I was able to cruise on some relaxing two-lane state highways through the countryside with the mountains riding in the middle. I spent the night in Cherokee NC, which is on the eastern edge of the Smoky Mountains and the western edge of the Nantahala National Forrest. Cherokee is the perfect stopping point for my first day since it offers ample motel options, a good selection of restaurants, and is the beginning point of the Blue Ridge Parkway. I particularly enjoyed the cool breezes cascading down from the mountain peaks above and the awe of the clear sky loaded with brilliant stars as I spent the night in the mountains. It was fantastic two-day voyage that gave me a stronger sense of how magnificent our creation is. I would encourage Bikers’ Dozen participants to consider taking advantage of this option if they have room for overnight gear on their bikes and they think they are able to make the 433-mile trip. Sit back and ride with me for the special trip I call “The Great Smoky Mountain Loop”, but one you may call “unforgettable”.

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The Monteagle Loop

The Monteagle Loop

Distance: 165 miles • Elevation Variance: 1674' • Fatigue Factor: Moderate

Today’s Loop took me atop Lookout Mountain, across the Tennessee River, up and over Sand Mountain, to the top of Monteagle Mountain where I stopped at a 100 year-old bakery, back down Monteagle and across the Tennessee River before returning to my starting point. Well enough of the talk about what I did, let’s do it together!

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Three State-Three Mountain Loop

Three State-Three Mountain Loop

Distance: 142 miles • Elevation Variance: 1504' • Fatigue Factor: Moderate

Since my day was mostly spent in areas with ample sunshine and the trip was only about four hours, I decided to start a little later in the day and finish around super time. Earlier in the day I rode the Incline Railway up Lookout Mountain and then walked to historic Point Park from the Incline station on the mountaintop. The Incline advertises that it is the world’s steepest mile, and I can understand why after I’m half way up and look down. Today’s route took me through the states of Tennessee, Georgia, and Alabama and over Suck Creek, Sand, and Lookout mountains. This route is very similar to the one used each year by over two thousand bicycle riders in the 3-State 3-Mountain Challenge bicycle event. This loop can easily be ridden after lunch but still return the riders before dark. Come join me as I take you “over the river and through the woods” through three states and over three mountains!

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Thunder Creek Harley-Davidson