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Vintage Yamaha Rally 2023

Started by aviationfred, September 30, 2023, 11:45:12 PM

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aviationfred

The 2023 Vintage Yamaha Rally was fun and incredible riding. I had the goal of riding the Streetfighter 1200 at the Rally. I seriously underestimated what kind of time was needed. I did get the project far enough mechanically to bring it along as a display. Next year it definitely will make the trip and be ridden. Casper was brought along. Fully functional, but looking a bit long in toothed with the back yard paint job.
Shortly before my departure I purchased a 1985 Honda VF500F Interceptor. Craig Ovadia had the little Interceptor waiting for me to pick up as a crossed Northen Arkansas.

Fred
I'm not the fastest FJ rider, I am 'half-fast', the fastest slow guy....

Current
2008 VFR800 RC46 Vtec
1996 VFR750 RC36/2
1990 FJ1300 (1297cc) Casper
1990 VFR750 RC36/1 Minnie
1989 FJ1200 Lazarus, the Streetfighter Project
1985 VF500F RC31 Interceptor

aviationfred

Wednesday I took the Honda out for it's maiden ride. I had put maybe 2 miles on it in Arkansas.
A run up Moonshiner 28 to Deals Gap and a trip up and back on the Tail of the Dragon.



Fred
I'm not the fastest FJ rider, I am 'half-fast', the fastest slow guy....

Current
2008 VFR800 RC46 Vtec
1996 VFR750 RC36/2
1990 FJ1300 (1297cc) Casper
1990 VFR750 RC36/1 Minnie
1989 FJ1200 Lazarus, the Streetfighter Project
1985 VF500F RC31 Interceptor

aviationfred

Thursday morning showed that a few people and bikes had arrived overnight.

After breakfast, I got with a long time Rally goer Jeff and his German import RD350LC and his friend Wayne with a Seca 900 and put together a ride for the day.

The route for the day is one of my favorite loops.
Moonshiner 28 South to Franklin. Hwy 64/28 to Highlands. Hwy 64 through Cashears to Hwy 215. Hwy 215 North to the Blue Ridge Parkway. The Blue Ridge Parkway to Hwy 74 and then back to Moonshiner 28. The short ride North to Stecoah and the Ironhorse Motorcycle Lodge.

Being Thursday.... the roads were completely empty and allowed us to ride at whatever pace we desired.

We stopped at Dry Falls for Wayne..... this was his 1st trip to the area we showed him one of the sights along our path.
I'm not the fastest FJ rider, I am 'half-fast', the fastest slow guy....

Current
2008 VFR800 RC46 Vtec
1996 VFR750 RC36/2
1990 FJ1300 (1297cc) Casper
1990 VFR750 RC36/1 Minnie
1989 FJ1200 Lazarus, the Streetfighter Project
1985 VF500F RC31 Interceptor

aviationfred

Friday was the day that the Cherohala Skyway was scheduled to be re-opened. A Spring with heavy rainfall had saturated a hillside and caused a rockslide that took out some of the road.
Inquiries had been made to verify that the road was actually open all the way in to Tellico Plains, but we could not find anything that actually said the road was open.....
3 of us on FJ's decided to volunteer for an attempt to ride into Tellico Plains. The worst that could happen was..... Ride the Cherohala Skyway 43 miles going West. Find out the road is still closed and have to ride the Cherohala Skyway East for 43 miles.... Don't threaten me with a good time..... :dance2:
We Found out that the road was indeed OPEN and we were able to make it into Tellico Plains.

Fred
I'm not the fastest FJ rider, I am 'half-fast', the fastest slow guy....

Current
2008 VFR800 RC46 Vtec
1996 VFR750 RC36/2
1990 FJ1300 (1297cc) Casper
1990 VFR750 RC36/1 Minnie
1989 FJ1200 Lazarus, the Streetfighter Project
1985 VF500F RC31 Interceptor

aviationfred

One from the group actually did have to ride the Cherohala Skyway back, while myself and Dave on the 89 continued on the Hwy 360 so we could connect up with US129 on the North end. Since 2018, when I began attending this Rally. The 129 Hub store at the US129/Hwy72 intersection has never been open. No matter what day of the week, or time of day. I always missed the place being open. I had told Dave about the really big Killboy Tail of the Dragon sign. As we turned into the parking lot for the sign, I noticed that the store was open.
After a few photos, I went to explore the store. I found the absolute best Tail of the Dragon T-Shirt. I had to get it.

Fred
I'm not the fastest FJ rider, I am 'half-fast', the fastest slow guy....

Current
2008 VFR800 RC46 Vtec
1996 VFR750 RC36/2
1990 FJ1300 (1297cc) Casper
1990 VFR750 RC36/1 Minnie
1989 FJ1200 Lazarus, the Streetfighter Project
1985 VF500F RC31 Interceptor

aviationfred

Dave was getting hungry and we had agreed to stop at Deals Gap for lunch. He took off headed South as I was still getting geared up. The run down the Dragon, at 1:30pm on a Friday afternoon was just short of perfect. Very light traffic, every car or cruiser pulled over into the 1st available turn-out as I caught them. I was able to get into a rhythm and let Casper rip. While I was waiting on Dave. I heard a familiar staccato of a V4. A 1996 Honda RVF400R pulled up next to Casper. These bikes were never sold in the US. They look like a miniature RC45.
I'm not the fastest FJ rider, I am 'half-fast', the fastest slow guy....

Current
2008 VFR800 RC46 Vtec
1996 VFR750 RC36/2
1990 FJ1300 (1297cc) Casper
1990 VFR750 RC36/1 Minnie
1989 FJ1200 Lazarus, the Streetfighter Project
1985 VF500F RC31 Interceptor

aviationfred

We did have a good showing for old Yamaha's.



Fred
I'm not the fastest FJ rider, I am 'half-fast', the fastest slow guy....

Current
2008 VFR800 RC46 Vtec
1996 VFR750 RC36/2
1990 FJ1300 (1297cc) Casper
1990 VFR750 RC36/1 Minnie
1989 FJ1200 Lazarus, the Streetfighter Project
1985 VF500F RC31 Interceptor

aviationfred

Saturday was the last ride day that I had for this year's Rally. We tried to figure out a good ride that kept us away from Deals Gap and would be barren of cars. We found a couple of obscure roads that linked Moonshiner 28 and US129 North of Robbinsville and South of Deals Gap.
The road that we took West from Moonshiner 28 is Upper Tuskegee road that turns into Yellow Creek road. Once we got to US129 we actually turned South towards Robbinsville. We turn onto the Cherohala Skyway for a few miles. We then took Santeetlah road up to the Maple Springs Observation Deck. Great views of the Mountains.
We made our way back down and turned onto Joyce Kilmer road which took us out to US129. There were some GREAT looking campsites right off the road with the river in the background. Lunch was at the Tapoco Lodge and was fantastic. Basically across the street from the lodge is Meadow Branch road. We took that all the way into the Fontana Village Resort.
A day or so earlier there was some serious Civil Disobedience conducted...... The corners for a few miles were covered in fresh rubber from cars drifting around every corner.
A top off for gas at the Fontana Village store and a final blast down Moonshiner 28 was the end to a great time in North Carolina and Tennessee.

Fred
I'm not the fastest FJ rider, I am 'half-fast', the fastest slow guy....

Current
2008 VFR800 RC46 Vtec
1996 VFR750 RC36/2
1990 FJ1300 (1297cc) Casper
1990 VFR750 RC36/1 Minnie
1989 FJ1200 Lazarus, the Streetfighter Project
1985 VF500F RC31 Interceptor

andyoutandabout

Fred, living that biking dream.
From my one time visit out that way, I know the roads to be top notch.
It's kinda cool how you found a Yamaha event that looks every bit as awesome as an Fj rally.

Andy
life without a bike is just life

Motofun

Great pic's.  The week before we had the fall rally at Tellico Plains.  The Cherahola was still closed so several of us used rafter road to get around the blockade.  Even with the difficulty that that caused it was still a great time.
'69 Honda Trail 90
'75 Honda CB400F
'85 Yamaha RZ350
'85 Yamaha FJ1100
'89 Yamaha FJ1200
'09 Yamaha 125 Zuma
'09 Kawasaki KZ110 (grand kids)
'13 Suzuki GSXR 750 (track)
'14 Yamaha FZ-09
'18 Suzuki GSXR 1000R (track)
'23 Yamaha Tenere 7
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