Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Day Ride: Hwy's 89, 190 & 105

We all wish we had the wealth of Warren Buffet, the stamina of Lance Armstrong, and the leisure time of a hobo but, in the real world, work and family obligations limit us to a more realistic existence. That is, few of us can take off on that cross country motorcycle trip at the drop of a hat. Most of us manage a couple of extended trips a year with an occasional overnighter here and there if we are lucky. The “day ride” is the backbone of our riding experience. Out the driveway trips familiar and doable in a day consisting of way stops and destinations of favorite eateries, parks, or landmarks. It doesn’t matter if the trip is 50 miles or 500. I’ve several memorized rides of varying lengths and sometimes don’t know until I leave as to which one it will be; it just depends on conditions and my mood. And, I’m inclined to mix it up, constantly making up now loops out of existing ones. I bet you do the same.
Above: Start/Stop point in Trimble, TN.
In the interest of a West Tennessee focus this entry is to highlight a loop I often do that will be enjoyable for anyone in the area. You can start anywhere on the route but, for the sake of a start/stop point, I begin the route in Trimble, TN. Rural West Tennessee is hard to beat for pastoral settings and good roads in peaceful contrast to the Wal-marts, hamburger alleys, car lots, and yard sales one encounters in lockstep with areas of rising population. Approximately 120 miles depending on the riders inclination to hurry or "smell the roses."
Above: Just one of the many beautiful settings along the route.

Above: Temp on this morning traveling through Sharon, TN.

Be sure to stop at the China Grove Country Store. The establishment is run by members of the Mennonite faith and offers deli sandwiches to order and all kinds of hard to find goods. Take home a jar of Pickled Jalapeno Eggs. Just don’t expect to find them open on Sundays. Stop also at the store in Skullbone for some history and a postcard.
Above: China Grove Country Store near Rutherford, TN.

Above: The store in Skullbone, TN.

Above: Kountry Korner Restaurant/Convenience Store in Dresden, TN. Ordinarily not my kind of stop but, on this day, half-price sausage & biscuit after 11:00 AM and a bench out front.

Above: Some roadside trivia.

Above: Along the route near Christmasville.

Above: The tracks in Trimble, TN.

Check out the map for the aforementioned stops and a couple other points of interest.

View 105, 190, 89 in a larger map


  1. Dear Jonesy:

    I have limited exerience riding in Tennessee and none in the western part at all. I have been through the area around Erwin, and Johnson City a couple of times. I do like riding through North Carolina and West Virginia. I find the south is much bigger on preserving the nature of small communities, or simply better at staving off the growth of characterless tract housing. Thank you for sharing the pictures of this day-run... In many respects it is like the flip-side of New England... Rich in culture and tradition, but without the oysters.

    Fondest regards,
    Jack • reep • Toad
    Twisted Roads

  2. Jack, we have oysters - just not the kind of which you speak.:) Yeah, West TN can't compare with the mountainous beauty and twistys of the eastern part of the state but has a lot going for it in and of its own. Rich in history and good food and quite a few not-so-bad-roads. Thanks for the comment and come on down when you can!

  3. LOL!! Oysters...yes... I was introduced to what Mountain Oysters were in a high school speech class in CA...from a boy from Tenn. EWWWWW!!!! Lovely pictures. I need to visit Skullbone. Great placename! -Lori

  4. Dear BeemerGirl (Lori) via Jonesy:

    Did he show you his or just give you a taste of lunch from home?
    (I couldn't resist.)

    My significant other is from Nebraska, and "oysters" there are called "fries." There are one or two days a year when harvested "fries" are collectively prepared and served as a social thing. I have never tasted them as their is something not quite right about the whole thing, at least for a guy.

    Fondest regards,
    Jack • reep • Toad
    Twisted Roads