Riding The Tail of the Dragon – Women’s World
Sam Nabb of Wilmington, Delaware works in bookkeeping and accounting for a Flame-Tech® store that her brother manages. That’s where she met Wayne who installs fireplaces. It wasn’t long before they started dating and eventually married.
One weekend while on vacation in Virginia, Sam and Wayne rented scooters to ride around the town. They had a blast! Sam (short for Sandee) had never ridden a scooter or motorcycle before, and Wayne hadn’t ridden since he was a kid.
Back at home, they decided to look at scooters since they’d had so much fun. They came home from the store with matching Yamaha Virago 250s. From January through May they practiced riding around the neighborhood. In May they took the MFS class which was both eye-opening and fun. After putting 4,000 miles on the 250s they traded up for Harley Sportsters. A few months later she had an accident and totaled the bike, but she walked away with only bruises. Within a few months, they both got H-D Street Glide Specials. Since she’s only 5’ 2” she had hers lowered to better fit her size.
Sometimes someone will comment on what a big bike that is for such a small woman. Overall people seem impressed to see a woman riding and are encouraging. Sam and Wayne love to ride and have taken several motorcycle vacations. The first was to Pennsylvania for a weekend where they saw many covered bridges. On another, they rode 10 hours to Niagara Falls. They love to ride the long, twisty backroads. When they married in Colorado in 2017, they rented a trike and toured around together. While riding on the back allowed her to enjoy the scenery and take pictures, Sam didn’t like being a passenger. Earlier this year they took a trip to Pigeon Forge, Tennessee and enjoyed riding the curvy mountain roads. Sam’s brothers both ride and one of them told her and Wayne about the Tail of the Dragon in the Smokey Mountains.
The GPS said they were about twenty minutes away from the Tail of the Dragon when she saw a sign. “CAUTION MOTORCYCLES: High Crash Area next 11 miles.” She knew this was it. With hearts pumping and adrenaline racing, they started on The Dragon.
“Oh, my Goodness!” Sam thought. “My God, what am I doing?” she asked herself as she maneuvered the dips and angles. Leaning right, then immediately leaning left.
According to TailOfTheDragon.com this road, which begins at Deals Gap on the Tennessee/North Carolina state line, is 318 curves in an 11-mile stretch of highway US 129. It’s one of the most popular places in the country for sports cars and motorcycles. Every curve is different on this unique section of highway. The tight turns and steep ‘S” curves make it a totally thrilling ride. The Dragon has been featured in several movies including “The Fugitive” and “Two-Lane Blacktop.”
“It was amazing!” Sam said. She couldn’t wait until she got home to let her brother know that she’d ridden the Tail of The Dragon! “He can’t stop saying how happy he is!” she said. Happy that she and Wayne got to experience that exhilarating ride. (Maybe secretly just happy they both survived it!) Sam has two adult children. Her son rides a Sportster. Her daughter hasn’t shown any interest in riding but seems very proud of her Mom riding.
Sam and Wayne plan to celebrate their fifth wedding anniversary by going back to Colorado. This time rather than flying and renting bikes; they’ll ride across the country on their own motorcycles. In the meantime, they’ll enjoy riding any chance they get!
If you or someone you know has a unique story contact Myra@MyraMcElhaney.com.