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      09-11-2018, 11:36 PM   #1
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The Tail 2018: Caravan from the Northeast

Moderator: This event has concluded. Please follow this link for continued discussion and media/photo sharing & coverage of the event.


As this event gets closer, the weekend before Thanksgiving, I know some in this forum are making plans....deciding how you can be a part of this epic E9X 2018 event (thanks, Boof! ).

I decided that if me and some friends are going, we may as well make the most of the trip.....and enjoy a thrilling caravan down to the Tail since Virginia is filled with a whole host of intriguing roads, one of them that simply parallels the highway (I-81) all the way down into Tennessee (this would be the Blue Ridge Parkway).

I'm in MD, and we will be starting our descent down to Tennessee on Thursday with a few others from the MD/DC/VA area.

Leg 1: We'll leave Thursday mid-morning (likely meeting in College Park, MD about 930am after the DC rush hour, and we'll leave about 10am or so), and then will leisurely drive down to Roanoake, spending some of the time on some back roads that will snake us south through Central Virginia. We'll arrive in Roanoake early Thursday evening and stay the night. It's only about a 5-hour trip with some back roads, so we could feasibly leave a little later to wait for anyone coming from north of MD. I just want to arrive by nightfall, which is about 430pm, so we'll be on the road by 11am at the latest.

In Roanoake, we will staying at the Country Inn Suites in Roanoake, a suites hotel, with each suite easily sleeping 3 or 4 (if you include a rollaway bed):
https://www.hotels.com/ho129157/?q-c...=1&ZSX=0&SYE=3

Leg 2: We will then will rise early Friday morning to make the remaining 400-mile trip along the infamous Blue Ridge Parkway (google this road to see some of the epic views and perspectives along this route). We'll leave about 8am, to give us 8 hours of daylight. We'll arrive in Tennessee near the Tail Friday early evening, joining the others from the South arriving Friday night.

So if you're coming from the north, feel free to join us on both legs, or simply on Friday's leg. Your choice. Yes, you could take a long, boring trip by yourself all the way into Tennessee....but why do that when you could join fellow M enthusiasts, and travel on some of the best roads on the east coast?

Stay tuned for more details.

Last edited by KevinGS; 10-27-2018 at 09:22 AM.
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      09-17-2018, 10:39 AM   #2
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Kevin, I will probably meet up with you in Roanoke on Thursday evening. I will be heading South from the Philly area. Not sure what route yet, Perhaps PA Turnpike to Route 15 to Route 340 to Route 81 and then south to Roanoke. It's anywhere from 5 1/2 to 6 hour drive, depending on stops. Obviously, anyone coming from the North is more than welcome to join me. I will confirm the route as we get closer to the date.
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      09-17-2018, 07:29 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by PAMMMV8 View Post
Kevin, I will probably meet up with you in Roanoke on Thursday evening. I will be heading South from the Philly area. Not sure what route yet, Perhaps PA Turnpike to Route 15 to Route 340 to Route 81 and then south to Roanoke. It's anywhere from 5 1/2 to 6 hour drive, depending on stops. Obviously, anyone coming from the North is more than welcome to join me. I will confirm the route as we get closer to the date.
Sounds like a plan, PAMMM.

Consider meeting us in College Park, MD by 10am or so, and then just caravanning down with me to Roanoake. I95 south through MD is probably the fastest route for you. Else, if you prefer the RT.15/340 path, then I may be able to meet up with you up on I81, in Strasburg where I66 and I81 come together.

We'll figure it out.

And yes, I hope you get others coming from the Northeast to connect with you, driving down together on Thursday.
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      10-24-2018, 09:09 PM   #4
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For those coming from the North, this is still the caravan plan into Tennessee. Currently looking for an ideal, affordable, "secure" hotel for us to lay our heads Thursday night.

More soon...

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      10-25-2018, 04:55 PM   #5
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A couple of us in western NC might want to join your caravan at Mt. Pisgah on the Blue Ridge Parkway. It would be cool to arrive at Fontana Village as a group.
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      10-25-2018, 05:40 PM   #6
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know if there is a New England caravan happening?
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      10-25-2018, 06:33 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by cvstar9M3 View Post
know if there is a New England caravan happening?
Doubt it - the NE boys will be too hung over celebrating the RedSox World Series win.
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      10-25-2018, 08:45 PM   #8
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A couple of us in western NC might want to join your caravan at Mt. Pisgah on the Blue Ridge Parkway. It would be cool to arrive at Fontana Village as a group.
In East Fork, NC? Sounds good to me. Let's do it.
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      10-26-2018, 07:31 PM   #9
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In East Fork, NC? Sounds good to me. Let's do it.
Mt Pisgah is at mile marker 408 on the Blue Ridge Parkway, south of Asheville. Great restaurant and view but closed in Nov.
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      10-26-2018, 10:06 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cvstar9M3 View Post
know if there is a New England caravan happening?
BimmerRules! EJT86
amrazM baseCPM3 nycplumber PAMMMV8 gds52

Are all heading down from your way.
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      11-06-2018, 05:40 PM   #11
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Quote:
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BimmerRules! EJT86
amrazM baseCPM3 nycplumber PAMMMV8 gds52

Are all heading down from your way.
Feel free to connect with us on Thursday in MD, or Friday in Roanoake...
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      11-08-2018, 11:03 PM   #12
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KevinGS and others coming from the northeast-
I hope to join your caravan just south of Asheville. I will be at the Pisgah Inn waiting for the group. Need to know approximate estimated time. We can fine-tune on the day of, if I have someone's cell phone.
I am Steve at 828 526 0598.
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      11-08-2018, 11:40 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Three Pedal Steve View Post
KevinGS and others coming from the northeast-
I hope to join your caravan just south of Asheville. I will be at the Pisgah Inn waiting for the group. Need to know approximate estimated time. We can fine-tune on the day of, if I have someone's cell phone.
I am Steve at 828 526 0598.
The plan, Steve, is to leave Roanoke at 7:30am, and then take the Blue Ridge Parkway (BRP) all the way down. From Roanoake to Pisgah Inn on the BRP, it seems to be about 285 miles. I'm thinking it will take about 6 hours of driving, and add another 90 minutes for a quick lunch, and a few stops for some pictures and gas, so roughly 7.5 hours. So my best guess is that we'd be at the Pisgah Inn about 3:00pm.

From Pisgah Inn to Fontana Village (where I'm staying), it's roughly 2 hours.

You'll have my cell number, so we'll stay in contact throughout the day to keep you updated.

Last edited by KevinGS; 11-08-2018 at 11:47 PM.
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      11-12-2018, 06:29 PM   #14
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Hi folks,

I live very close to NYC and am planning to start my trip on Thur eve around 3.30 pm after leaving work early.

Since I might hit evening traffic @ multiple spots, I am planning to drive for about 5/6 hours and spending Thursday night either @ Harrisonburg or Staunton depending on how tired I am.

And then I saw this thread and now know more about the Blue Ridge. Darn!

It is so tempting to join the caravan on Friday, but I suspect that it will be quite tough for me to join given my start time on Thursday.

Let me see if I can advance my time and reach Roanoke that night and join you folks on Friday. Will keep you posted.

Thanks!

Last edited by BimmerRules!; 11-12-2018 at 10:12 PM.
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      11-13-2018, 12:04 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by BimmerRules! View Post
Hi folks,

I live very close to NYC and am planning to start my trip on Thur eve around 3.30 pm after leaving work early.

Since I might hit evening traffic @ multiple spots, I am planning to drive for about 5/6 hours and spending Thursday night either @ Harrisonburg or Staunton depending on how tired I am.

And then I saw this thread and now know more about the Blue Ridge. Darn!

It is so tempting to join the caravan on Friday, but I suspect that it will be quite tough for me to join given my start time on Thursday.

Let me see if I can advance my time and reach Roanoke that night and join you folks on Friday. Will keep you posted.

Thanks!
Yes, join us whenever you can. Thursday looks like a messy travel day along I95 and I81 in MD and VA, so we'll leisurely cruise down to Roanoke, VA at some point early Thursday.

On Friday, the weather looks better, but we may leave a little later, to let the Blue Ridge dry a bit after Thursday's rain. So you can likely link up with us on Friday for the Blue Ridge drive. We'll stay in touch. Again, the weather may shift plans slightly on Thursday and Friday.
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      11-13-2018, 10:40 AM   #16
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Thanks Kevin.

Ugh! I hoped that the Thursday rain is more towards the eastern side near the coast and not in the west but thanks to your post, I checked the weather @ the northern areas of 81 and am a bit concerned:

For instance, weather in Staunton, VA on Thursday:

https://www.accuweather.com/en/us/st...t/336234?day=3

They actually write 'Sleet and freezing rain; travel will be extremely difficult and dangerous'.

Similar forecast for Harrisonburg, VA (place where I originally thought of staying overnight on Thursday):

https://www.accuweather.com/en/us/ha...t/336229?day=3

In addition to the similar warning on travel, Thursday night forecast for Harrisonburg says:"Cloudy; a heavy shower in the evening, then rain, beginning after temperatures rise above freezing"

Since I still have my summer tires on, I guess I better take it easy and decide both my route and Thursday night halt based on the weather. So, sorry, cannot commit joining you folks on Friday. Bummer.
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      11-13-2018, 11:46 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BimmerRules! View Post
Thanks Kevin.

Ugh! I hoped that the Thursday rain is more towards the eastern side near the coast and not in the west but thanks to your post, I checked the weather @ the northern areas of 81 and am a bit concerned:

For instance, weather in Staunton, VA on Thursday:

https://www.accuweather.com/en/us/st...t/336234?day=3

They actually write 'Sleet and freezing rain; travel will be extremely difficult and dangerous'.

Similar forecast for Harrisonburg, VA (place where I originally thought of staying overnight on Thursday):

https://www.accuweather.com/en/us/ha...t/336229?day=3

In addition to the similar warning on travel, Thursday night forecast for Harrisonburg says:"Cloudy; a heavy shower in the evening, then rain, beginning after temperatures rise above freezing"

Since I still have my summer tires on, I guess I better take it easy and decide both my route and Thursday night halt based on the weather. So, sorry, cannot commit joining you folks on Friday. Bummer.

We have a snow mix forecast for the Blue Ridge Mountains (south of Asheville) for today through Thursday. I am counting on it clearing on Friday. Often the Blue Ridge Parkway is closed if there has been ice or snow.


We will have to play it by ear. The threatening weather is our friend and is what will keep the crowds away on Saturday.
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      11-13-2018, 01:34 PM   #18
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Quote:
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....


We will have to play it by ear. The threatening weather is our friend and is what will keep the crowds away on Saturday.

Well said. Keeping fingers crossed.

Since the tail is the main event that I am coming to, I decided to keep the Blue Ridge Parkway as an option if the weather doesn't delay me on Thursday.
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      11-13-2018, 01:41 PM   #19
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Yes, join us whenever you can. Thursday looks like a messy travel day along I95 and I81 in MD and VA, so we'll leisurely cruise down to Roanoke, VA at some point early Thursday.

On Friday, the weather looks better, but we may leave a little later, to let the Blue Ridge dry a bit after Thursday's rain. So you can likely link up with us on Friday for the Blue Ridge drive. We'll stay in touch. Again, the weather may shift plans slightly on Thursday and Friday.
Can I bother you for a suggestion please?

Since I don't want to take chance driving the car with summer tires thru the possible snow/sleet in the western regions (81S), I am considering taking I-95 down (on Thursday) and then taking 85 (on Friday) to reach Fontana. And yeah, regretfully skip the Blue Ridge this time.

Is Petersburg, VA, a decent enough place to stay overnight or are there other towns south of Richmond that you would recommend?

Thanks!
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      11-13-2018, 02:43 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by BimmerRules! View Post
Can I bother you for a suggestion please?

Since I don't want to take chance driving the car with summer tires thru the possible snow/sleet in the western regions (81S), I am considering taking I-95 down (on Thursday) and then taking 85 (on Friday) to reach Fontana. And yeah, regretfully skip the Blue Ridge this time.

Is Petersburg, VA, a decent enough place to stay overnight or are there other towns south of Richmond that you would recommend?

Thanks!
Totally understand.

Petersburg is OK, more of a trucker town though. But if you find a nice Holiday Inn Express or something, you'll be fine.

South of that, the next big towns like South Hill, VA and Henderson, NC towns are all Interstate towns, so they'll have hotels, and will be fine to stay in overnight. None of them are metropolises that are "dangerous" per say, especially if you're staying near the interstate.

I've traveled through those towns often, but have never stayed in any of them, so I'm not speaking from experience...in regards to accommodations.
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      11-13-2018, 08:50 PM   #21
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FYI, I've decided to simply avoid the wet roads on Thursday in the southeast, by leaving late tomorrow afternoon from work (on Wednesday) from Central MD while the weather is dry....landing in Roanoke on Wednesday night.

I'll spend the dreary Thursday in Roanoke (plenty of work I can do), and then Friday morning, mid-morning once the roads dry up a bit, I'll be hitting the BRP to drive into NC/Tennessee.

If you're coming into Roanoke on Thursday night, or plan to meet up with me on Friday morning in Roanoke for the Blue Ridge drive, just let me know by Thursday night.
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      11-13-2018, 09:59 PM   #22
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Quote:
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A couple of us in western NC might want to join your caravan at Mt. Pisgah on the Blue Ridge Parkway. It would be cool to arrive at Fontana Village as a group.
Is this still in the works Steve?
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