Saturday, April 17, 2010

Murder Mountain Ride

No, there's no "Murder Mountain" in WNC. This ride derives it's name from two interesting sites we passed along the route. What message do you see in this skywriting?

The ride started on NC 80 between Spruce Pine and Burnsville. We took the parkway to get to NC 80.

Flag at Craggy Gardens.

The Driver.
The Navigator.

Such oldness still out in the country. We spotted this old crank type gas pump on NC 80 just before getting to Kona where the title of our ride got its name.

April is showing her true colors.

Just passed the yellow bells was the quaint town of Kona - not much of a town now but it used to be a feldspar mining town until the EPA shut it down because the people were suffering from "white lung." As we rode through the town, we noticed the church with a graveyard in the back.

Not just any graveyard, though, this one holds a few entertaining stories.

According to the sign, George Silver, a veteran of the Revolutionary War, is buried here.

He was born in 1760 and died at the age of 79. Now the fact that he was a War veteran is cool enough but add in that his son is also buried here and now you've got a real story.

This is the head stone of Charlie Silver, son of the Revolutionary war veteran, George. He was born in 1812 and was murdered by his young bride three days before Christmas in 1831 at the young age of 19. THIS is why the ride is called, "Murder Mountain."

Notice the three gravemarkers with the initial CS? Well the story goes like this: Charlie married Frankie - a small girl barely 5 feet tall and not more than 90 pounds. One night Charlie came home (many think after carousing around) and Frankie was so enraged with him that she used her axe and murdered him.

She then scattered him around town. They took her to trial and the townsfolk found most of him and buried him. After the funeral, a few more parts were found and since it wasn't proper to disturb the grave, they buried those parts right next to the original grave. A few days later, they found even more of Charlie - thus he has 3 graves.

I thought it was kind of ironic that Kona Road was a Dead End :)

This is George and Charlie's cabin in the valley of Kona. It was built in 1794 and is still one of the largest homes in Kona with two stories and two chimneys.

We saw lots of these signs on this ride up to the mountain part of the ride.

We went through Loafer's Glory, home of the Bonnie & Clyde restaurant.

And this very patriotic house right on the river. The other side of the home sports a waterwheel but we were traveling to fast for me to get a good enough shot of it.

Okay, yes, I'm cheesy. But who can pass through the small community of Bandana without taking this picture?

At the top of Roan Mountain, we were on the Tenn/NC state line.

Roan Mountain and Carver's Gap are considered some of the most popular national forest land in TN. Behind Frank is Carver's Gap and the grassy balds.

Our ride for the day. Now 21 years old! Wow! Still love riding her every chance we get!

On the final leg of the trip through Burnsville we saw all these quilt squares painted on barns, homes, and businesses. One day I've got to go back and find them all. One day when I'm not on the back of a two-wheeler.

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