Motorcycle Loop ride near Floyd, VA

Motorcycle Loop ride near Floyd, VA

Downtown Floyd, VA

Downtown Floyd, VA

This motorcycle loop ride near Floyd, Virginia intersects the Blue Ridge Parkway at two points. You can do either half (north or south of the parkway) or the whole 34.3 miles.

The small and historic town of Floyd, Virginia is located about 5 miles from the Blue Ridge Parkway, about 160 miles into the 469 mile ride. Noted for it’s celebration of local music, the picturesque shops, and a few very good places to eat and stay, Floyd makes a nice layover on your Blue Ridge Parkway motorcycle tour.

Southern Virginia Countryside

Southern Virginia Countryside

This motorcycle loop ride gives you a nice taste of the variety of great roads found in the southern Virginia region which surround the town of Floyd. Rolling hills, pastoral farms, lazy rivers and streams predominate the landscape. You’ll find both relaxed cruising, tight and twisty climbs, and tiny little back roads sneaking through the hills. It’s an opportunity to slip into town and refuel your bike and belly, or make a spicy diversion off the relaxed riding of the park road.

Shooting Creek Road

Shooting Creek Road

Directions (clockwise):

Starting in downtown Floyd where VA 8 and US 221 cross, follow US 221 north 2.5 miles to reach Shooting Creek Road (VA 860).

Shooting Creek Road is a tiny back road which leads out through the farmland then into the woods as it traces along the waterway. If you watch for unpaved VA 690 at a sharp curve, you’ll see the Pine Creek Mill, a nice stop for a photo.

Pine Creek Mill

Pine Creek Mill

Shooting Creek Road crosses Franklin Pike then continues south to reach the Blue Ridge Parkway. It is poorly marked at the parkway. Cross the park road and continue south to reach VA 40.

VA 40 has both easy cruising and some very tight curves as it takes you east to Woolwine to meet VA 8.

VA 8 will take you north climbing to reach the Blue Ridge Parkway at Tuggles Gap. You’ll find both easy cruising and some exciting hairpins are you reach the crest. Pass under the parkway and continue back into Floyd.

Motorcycle loop ride map near Floyd, VA

Click for full size

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wayne busch - Smoky Mountain Motorcycle Rider.com

Wayne Busch

– Wayne Busch lives in Waynesville, NC, where he produces the most detailed, comprehensive, up-to-date motorcycle pocket maps of the Blue Ridge and Smoky Mountains to help you get the most of your vacation experience. See them here – AmericaRidesMaps.com

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Favorite Blue Ridge Parkway Motorcycle Pit Stops – Chateau Morrisette, VA

Photo-Chateau Morisette on the Blue Ridge Parkway

Chateau Morrisette on the Blue Ridge Parkway

The romantic relationship we have with Chateau Morrisette winery on the Blue Ridge Parkway goes back to a motorcycle trip many years ago. Tired and hungry from a long day on the lower Virginia section of the Blue Ridge Parkway, we stumbled in looking for a bite to eat only to find the kitchen had just stopped serving for lunch. Our disappointment must have radiated as the chef emerged from the kitchen, took one look at us, and said, I’ll take care of them”.

photo-Restaurant-terrace-at Chateau-Morrisette

The Restaurant Terrace

We were seated on the beautiful mediterranean style porch with it’s panoramic views of the rolling Virginia countryside. A short time later sandwiches arrived at the table and we devoured one of the best meals we’d had in days. I remember a delicious portabello mushroom  on crustini bread draped in a melted cheese which we accompanied by a glass of Black Dog Red wine and knew we’d found a  heavenly oasis.  I’ve never missed a chance to stop at the Chateau Morrisette since nor ever been disappointed.

Photo-tasting-room-at-chateau-morrisette

The tasting room

Over the years, the winery has grown in size and reputation. In times past it was one of the few landmarks you could easily identify from the Blue Ridge Parkway. Far out across one of those idyllic mountain farm fields, a long low series of signs spelled out the name of the winery in large letters. Gone now, the only way to find  it is to know where it is and watch for it. Success has meant one of the few advertisements along the Blue Ridge Parkway is no longer needed, and the parkway ethic is enhanced by it’s absence.

photo-terrace-at-chateau-morrisette

Live entertainment is common on weekends

While the restaurant remains much as I remember it, the new building at the vinyard is now the hub of activity. The regal architecture hosts the tasting room, gift shop, and is the sales outlet for the wines. The terrace outside is the gathering and resting place where patrons sit and enjoy their glasses of local vintage to the accompaniment of snacks and often live entertainment.

Photo-Chateau-Morrisette-Restaurant

Chateau Morrisette Restaurant

On a weekend visit you’re happy to be on a motorcycle where you can slip into corners in the crowded parking lot. There are frequent events, a stage on the beautiful grounds for concerts and such, it seems there’s always something going on at this popular destination.

Chateau Morrisette winery

Chateau Morrisette is locate at milepost 168.8 on the Blue Ridge Parkway south of Tuggles Gap. Look for Black Ridge Road, then spur off quickly onto Winery Road. You’ll arrive in 0.6 miles.

photo-Chateau-Morrisette-Wine

Chateau Morrisette's Black Dog Wines - Tasty

You’ll find Chateau Morrisette and all the surrounding great motorcycle rides in the area on America Rides Maps #3 of the Complete Blue Ridge Parkway seriesNorth Carolina / Virginia Border Rides.

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Wayne Busch
Wayne Busch – Cartographer
– Wayne Busch lives in Waynesville, NC, where he produces the most detailed and comprehensive and up-to-date motorcycle pocket maps of the Blue Ridge and Smoky Mountains to help you get the most of your vacation experience. See them here – AmericaRidesMaps.com 

 

 

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Notes from the Road – Eateries, The Hardware Co., Hillsville, VA

Photo - The Hardware Co. Restaurant, Hillsville, Virginia

Photo - The Hardware Co. Restaurant, Hillsville, Virginia

As I’m out on the road doing the explorations for America Rides motorcycle maps, I try to find good places I can recommend. I visited this one several times and think it’s one you’ll like to visit on your motorcycle vacation. It’s 10 minutes more or less from the Blue Ridge Parkway on VA 52 from the Fancy Gap exit in the southern Virginia town of Hillsville.

While there is a historic section in Hillsville where this restaurant serves as a centerpiece, the town spreads along the main roads which all come together in the small town, including Interstate 77 and US 221. I found myself staying here on several occasions as there are a large number of motels near the Interstate. It makes for a good place to not only lay over on a Blue Ridge Parkway vacation trip, but also to tour the surprising number of great motorcycle rides which course through the surrounding countryside. It became the hub for one of my most extensive maps.

The restaurant resides in a building which was originally a hardware company, hence the name.The food is good, sometimes great. I’ve always enjoyed my meal, a fine compliment to the great rides that lead you here. There’s a nice pub to get a cool one and live music on some evenings. If you’re passing through on a warm day or just looking for a treat, right next door is an old time soda fountain where you can get some pretty darned good ice cream and sodas.

You can check them out online at http://www.hardwarecompany.net/ . The street address is:

The Hardware Co. of Hillsville
508 North Main Street
Hillsville, VA
Telephone: 276-728-265
Email: info@hardwarecompany.net

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Notes From The Road – Virginia – 7/16/09

The Hardware Co. Restaurant, Hillsville, VA.

I’ve returned to familiar ground. It was getting late, I hadn’t eaten all day, and I’d planned for this eventuality. I laid out my routes so I’d make a couple passes through Hillsville, VA. It was one of the places I stayed previously on my scouting trips. I knew I’d get a good meal, go back to the same motel, and I’m ready to crash for the evening.

394 miles today. Not all that impressive. A little under 100 were spent on highway or major roads. I did spend some time on gravel roads which slow progress considerably. Easier to go on through than route around them.

More of the day was spent in North Carolina than expected. Due to the reconfiguring of the maps, more of North Carolina is included as I criss-cross the border. I didn’t expect to find as many good roads as I did. Those I thought wouldn’t be suitable proved true. Nonetheless, got to check them all. I still need to revisit some more of North Carolina to compare the roads I’ve discovered to the roads I already know. I should wrap that up in the morning then spend the rest of the time in Virginia. The only fair way to compare them is to ride them all and judge them fresh.

Amazingly, the predicted rain held off. It’s now supposed to move through tonight. That would work out well. It’s a lot hotter than I expected. Should have packed the mesh gear. Hard to relate to the lower altitudes when you live up high. Coming down a couple thousand feet has a big effect.

With luck, I’ll reach Roanoke by tomorrow evening. I’m pretty tired. I’ll get this first map finished up by mid-day and should knock out a good portion of the next. While it would be nice to finish two, I’m not so convinced it’s going to happen. If I get inspired, I brought along the third. For now, I’m sure I’ll get only one.

Wayne@americaridesmaps.com

>> Go To America Rides Maps.com – http://americaridesmaps.com

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