Thursday, August 08, 2019

Fontana Village North Carolina - WWR XIII Tapoco, Putt Putt and Boat Cruise

Not much happened all morning. We started late and never really got moving until after noon. Sandy and I had breakfast cobbled together from some things we had in the fridge in our room.

Around midday, Southern Draw suggested we ride over to Tapoco Lodge for lunch. Tapoco (pronounced ta-POE-ka, I was told) was just across US 129 from the Cheoah (Fugitive) Dam. We debated what time to leave and settled on 2:00 PM. Bill figured this would leave time when we got back for the Putt Putt Golf Tournament before departing at 5:30 for the Fontana Lake Boat Cruise. Bill is not always good with time.

If I were going to Tapoco, I would go up US 28 to the Crossroads, turn left on US 129 and ride down the hill. I had known there was a back road over the mountain from Fontana but had never tried it. Tbone (Tracy) arrived just as we were leaving and joined us, as did Mark and Wanda in the car. Bill led us over County 1246 and 1247 to US 129 right in front of our destination. We took a short side trip on the way to see a power station. For anyone who thinks The Tail of the Dragon is twisty, this road makes it look like a freeway.

Historic Tapoco Lodge 

 US 129 across the river

 My Reuben sandwich and slaw

 Leaning tower of Rings

After lunch, which went later than we thought, I met a fellow in the bike parking area with a silver 2005 GoldWing. We didn't have time to talk much but he had good taste in motorcycles. Bill led back the conventional route at a good clip. I eased back on the acceleration in the short straights because my passenger had been complaining about the fore and aft G forces associated with full throttle and hard brakes. Bill and I managed to pass a Saturn Sky who tried to keep up with us the last winding stretch to the lodge. Better luck next time.

We rushed into the Putt Putt Tournament where Cheap B, Sandy and I played as a threesome. We didn't do too well but I blamed it all on the golf course superintendent and greens keeper. Too many loose impediments. Any resemblance between this and real miniature golf was just a coincidence, but we had fun and, in the great humidity, sweated a lot. Mona cleaned up.

 Bill and the Illinois adventurers

 The Okie and the Indy's

Fontana Lake Boat Tour

From the golf emporium, it was a rush over to the marina to catch the Miss Hazel for a water tour of Fontana Lake and the dam. Our captain/helmsman/crew/tour guide gave us the history of the area, the dam and the lake in great detail. The lake was created during WW II when the Little Tennessee River was dammed to provide power for the ALCOA aluminum plant as part of the war effort. It was the second highest dam in the USA at the time and was still the highest dam east of the Mississippi.

 The captain and crew

Scenes from Fontana Lake

 Floating cabins

 Fishing from an inflatable boat

 Bill told tales of hunting and fishing in this area

 The group debarked in the National Park for a photo

 The river bypass when they built Fontana Dam

 The back side of Fontana Dam

 The gates

 The semicircular steel protects retro-fitted expansion joints

 Surface cracks

 Fontana Hilton Appalachian Trail Shelter

I could live on this

After the cruise, we returned to the resort and settled around the Kaw Pasture by the pool. As the sun went down, Toj (V~13 ad keeper of the numbers) and his friend Bob from Pennsylvania arrived. Then Big Grouch (Roger) and his friend Bill from the Windsor Ontario area joined the party. It was a happy evening, with the last of us toddling off just after 11:00 PM.

Today's Route (22 motorcycle miles):

No comments: