If I kept a fishing journal here's what today's entry would be. Paula and I pulled the boat over the Foothills Parkway to Tellico Lake. As usual, motorcycles were on our butt and passing on double yellow lines. Three guys did just that. I commented to Paula how stupid they are. We drove down the road on our way to fish going under the speed limit. We came up on an accident scene. One of the three riders had run off the road in the best place he could have picked. His bike was wrecked but he was OK. A park service person was there in uniform. I drove through, turned around and drove back to the scene.
I walked up to the Park Service fellow and told him I was a material witness to "wreckless endangerment", "The State of Tennessee vs. those three men." The man in uniform told me he was a maintenance person. I told him I would wait for a ranger. He said the guys told him not to report the accident. I told him he had to report it by law. He walked away.
So I decided to ream the bike riders a new one. I stood there on the side of the road telling these men that this is not a race track and their actions were wreckless and stupid. I told them I live here and drive this road almost weekly to go fishing. I said a man was killed on this road last night and his wife was flown by helicopter to UT. I told them wild animals cross the road. I explained that deer, wild boar and bears run right out in front of you often. I said a motorcycle rider hit a bear three weeks ago. I told them another person died on "the Dragon" this week.
Paula said my arms were pointing and moving. She was worried we would get into a fight. All three were much bigger than me. They agreed with me, we shook hands, I left and we went fishing.
At the ramp this evening a motorcycle went by flying. We commented that he had to be doing over 100 miles per hour. Jack, who does not stretch the facts guessed 150 miles per hour. We talked more, maybe for a half hour. We heard a siren. An ambulance flew by. Then a State Trooper flew by with lights and siren on. We're sure that person is probably dead.
Tonight we were driving home. A motorcycle rider was right on the back of the boat tailgating us. A bear, a very large bear ran across the road right in front of us. If I had been speeding we would have hit him. I looked back and the motorcycle was gone. I don't know if he ran off the road or pulled over for some reason. What a day. I deal with this every time I go over there. Some of them are careful. Some are dangerous.
One of the guys at the accident scene told me "we drove 600 miles to come here and kill ourselves". I thought to myself, people drive further than that to come here and kill themselves. This "Tail of the Dragon" thing is getting out of hand.
Last edited by Byron Begley; 10-08-2009 at 11:35 PM..