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TT-East 2018: A Return to Helen

Monday, September 24, 2018 at 8:00 AM - Friday, September 28, 2018 at 11:30 PM

Registration Information

Registration Type Sales End Price Fee Quantity
TT-East 2018 Primary Registrant - Full Week
Registration opens Thanksgiving day
Not Started $110.00 $0.00
TT-East 2018 Guest - Full Week Not Started $60.00 $0.00

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Event Details


Join us for the 18th annual TT-East where we'll tour some of our favorite areas of the Southern Appalachians as we make our way to the Bavarian town of Alpine Helen in the North Georgia Mountains.

We'll start this years journey in the gorgeous Shenandoah valley and Allegheny Moutnains of West Virginia where the quality of the roads are as amazing as the sights.  Places of interest include the Green Bank Radio Observatory, the New River Gorge Bridge, and the beautiful views from the Highland Scenic Highway.  The Highway traverses the mountainous terrain of the Allegheny Highlands and Plateau, and rises from Richwood, elevation 2,325 feet, to over 4,500 feet along the Parkway.

Day 2 will bring us into the Kentucky Highlands and The Daniel Boone National Forest which embraces some of the most rugged terrain west of the Appalachian Mountains. The forest lies within the Cumberland Plateau, where steep forested slopes, sandstone cliffs and narrow ravines characterize the land.  We will see the natural beauty along the Red River Gorge scenic byway and other natural wonders such as Cumberland Falls.  The 125-foot wide curtain of water is dramatic day or night but it's only at night during a full moon that you can see the moonbow, a phenomenon not found anywhere else in the Western Hemisphere. The roads of Kentucky are sure to please as we travel along ridgelines, rolling bluegrass hills, creeks, farms, and mountain towns. The wonderful and unique KY-89 will keep you on your toes with its narrow sections, precipitous drops at the edge of the pavement, as well as hairpin curves and steep grades.

Day 3 will bring us into Tennessee and the Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area which encompasses 125,000 acres of the Cumberland Plateau.  The area boasts miles of scenic gorges and sandstone bluffs and is rich with natural and historic features. Wednesday's route will also take us on one of the greatest road combinations in the east, The Devils Triangle.  The Triangle's 44 miles has a little bit of everything and will get your attention in a hurry.  The tight twisties are as good as the Tail of the Dragon but there are even more dangers here; deep rock strewn gullies just off the pavement, ragged steel guard rails, steep drop offs and rock cliffs leave no room for error.

After lunch on the banks of Melton Hill Lake, the day will conclude with a run on Happy Valley Road and the Tail of the Dragon before we end the day at Fontana Village.  For anyone wanting even more, a night run on the Dragon with a stop to see the stunning view of the night sky at the Look Rock Overlook on the Foothills Parkway is on the schedule for after dinner.

Thursday's fun will begin on the Cherohala Skyway, the "Mile High Legend".  It winds up and over 5,400 foot mountains for 18 miles in North Carolina and descends another 23 miles into the deeply forested back country of Tennessee. The road crosses through the Cherokee and Nantahala National Forests thus the name “Chero…hala”. The Skyway is becoming well known in motorcycling and sportscar circles for it’s long, sweeping corners, scenic views and cool summer breezes.  Our trip on the Skyway will include a stop at the 80 foot high Bald River Falls.  The falls are considered to be the most impressive and scenic waterfall in East Tennessee.

We'll spend the rest of the day along some of the lesser traveled roads of Tennessee, North Carolina & Georgia before we reach our final destination of Alpine Helen.

Alpine Helen, Georgia – with a population of only 430 residents – is the state’s third most visited city. There is no other town that packs so much charm and so much to do into only 2.1 square miles.  Helen started as a home to the Cherokee, and then to European settlers who came for the gold and the timber. Today, people come for the Blue Ridge Mountain setting and the Southeast’s finest Bavarian Village­, a glimpse of Germany, right here in Georgia.

During the final day of TT-East 2018, we'll do an extended version of the famous North Georgia Six Gap drive and see the 360 degree views from Brasstown Bald, the tallest mountain in Geogria at 4,784 feet.  If you would rather spend the day at a slower pace you can enjoy all that Helen has to offer including the many waterfalls and wineries nearby.  The event will conclude with dinner overlooking beautiful Lake Burton.

Great people, great cars, and great roads is what makes TT-East the special event that it is. Please join us for the 18th annual TT-East so you can experience it for yourself.  TT-East, by drivers for drivers.

Full week registration is limited to 15 cars.  Part week registration requests will be handled on a case by case basis.

Be sure to visit us on facebook at

Past Road Trip Event Coverage:
TT-East 2010: Blue Ridge Parkway
TT-East 2011: Fall Tour of the Catskills and Adirondacks
TT-East 2012: Backroads Tour of the Southern Appalachians
TT-East 2014: Tour of Southeast Ohio, The Eastern Highlands of Kentucky, and Western North Carolina (Video)
TT-East 2016: Devils, Dragons, Snakes & Shiners (Video)

Length of days
Before registering, make sure you read the event schedule and fully understand how long the days are. If you are unsure that you have the stamina to spend 8-10 hours on the road per day, make sure you bring a guest that you can share the driving with. Extending scheduled stops or taking extra rest breaks to accommodate individuals who are not prepared is not possible.

Explanation of fees & Cancellation Policy
The registration price covers the cost of lunch for Mon-Thurs, event materials and payment processing fees; refunds can only be given up until 8/24/2018. A 10% processing fee will be deducted from all refunds. TT-East is a non-profit event; any remaining funds will be donated to the Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation.

Event Schedule
(All times are approximate)

Monday - 305 miles
Start End  
8:00 8:30 Check-in & Drivers Meeting - Country Inn & Suites, Harrisonburg, VA
8:30 10:45 In Transit
10:45 11:15 Green Bank Radio Observatory, Green Bank, WV
11:15 12:00 In Transit
12:00 12:45 Lunch - Highlands Scenic Highway, Marlinton, WV
12:45 2:30 In Transit
2:30 2:45 Fuel Stop - Rainelle, WV
2:45 3:15 In Transit
3:15 4:00 Canyon Rim Visitor Center - New River Gorge, Lansing, WV
4:00 6:00 In Transit
6:00   Arrive: Holiday Inn Express Charleston-Civic Center, Charleston, WV


Tuesday - 325 miles
Start End  
8:30 11:00 In Transit
11:00 11:30 Cave Run Lake, Morehead, KY
11:30 12:45 In Transit
12:45 1:45 Lunch - Sky Bridge Picnic Area, Pine Ridge, KY
1:45 3:00 In Transit
3:00 3:15 Fuel Stop - Irvine, KY
3:15 5:00 In Transit
5:00 5:15 Fuel Stop - London, KY
5:15 6:00 In Transit
6:00   Arrive: Cumberland Falls State Resort Park, Corbin, KY

Wednesday - 265 miles
Start End  
8:30 10:30 In Transit
10:30 11:00 East Rim Overlook, Big South Fork Recreation Area, Oneida, TN
11:00 1:15 In Transit
1:15 2:30 Lunch - Calhoun's, Oak Ridge, TN
2:30 4:00 In Transit
4:00 4:30 Fuel Stop - Maryville, TN
4:30 5:45 In Transit
5:45   Arrive: Fontana Village, Fontana Dam, NC


Thursday - 260 miles
Start End  
8:45 10:30 In Transit
10:30 11:00 Bald River Falls, Tellico Plains, TN
11:00 12:15 In Transit
12:15 1:00 Lunch - Hiwassee Dam, Murphy, NC
1:00 3:00 In Transit
3:00 3:15 Rest Stop - Franklin, NC
3:15 4:15 In Transit
4:15 4:45 Fuel Stop - Dillard, GA
4:45 6:00 In Transit
6:00   Arrive: Hampton Inn, Helen, GA


Friday - Helen, GA
Start End  
All Day On Your Own: Helen Area
On Your Own: Wineries and Waterfalls Drive
9:00 5:00 Optional Group Drive - Six Gaps of North Georgia (Extended Version) (155 miles)
7:00   Final Dinner - LaPrade's Marina, Lake Burton, GA
Have questions about TT-East 2018: A Return to Helen? Contact the organizer

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When & Where

West Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, North Carolina, Georgia
Multiple Locations

Monday, September 24, 2018 at 8:00 AM - Friday, September 28, 2018 at 11:30 PM

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TT-East 2018: A Return to Helen
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