Group Ride 9/15/2023

My wife Pam and I and her dad Terry Lynch arrived at Twin Hollow Campground in Gilbert, TN on Thursday evening the 15th. Group members had 2 cabins booked up here, we would have had more but they were already sold out. So, other group members stayed down at the Abes Lodge down the hill. The view from the cabin was spectacular and very peaceful. The sun was shining in full force but not too hot and you could see the points of mountain tops for as far as your eyes could see. Once we took it all in, we decided to do a little pre-ride to get the jitters out of our system that evening before the first official ride the next morning at 9 AM. The group got together and decided to head out on some of the Twin Star Outlaw Trails and look for the wild horses that I had found a few years back with a little luck. We looked all around the mountain areas up hills down hills and struck out. We ended up on top of a mountain in the middle of nowhere with a fantastic view of the sunsetting. It was now dark and starting to get cold and we headed back to the cabin. Check out the photos of the sunset at the Facebook link below. If you think it was awesome it was 100x better in person.

On the 15th everyone met on top of the mountain by the office at Twin Hollow for a super quick rider meeting and we were off. We had a couple of friends/group members that was there first time at an off-road park. James Couch and Cyrus Applegate and Casey and his wife Nicole Snider’s first time to Hatfield McCoy Trails. I had Indiana SxS member Dave Carter trying to convince me that a trail was closed and to go the other way and I just told him to trust me. Later when going on the trail that was supposed to be closed, I just smiled back at him out in RockHouse. We made are way through Rockhouse heading west towards Matewan taking several breathtaking pictures of the majestic mountains. Soon after a breathtaking mountain side showed itself next thing you know we were climbing up hills going down hills getting a shake down by rocks as afterall it is RockHouse. We finally make our way out of the RockHouse system to the Devil Anse trail system after many miles of riding trails through the mountainous terrain. We were right in the backdoor of the last home place of the Hatfield’s Devil Anse and stopped by his cemetery by the request of James Couch. It was a nice walk up the hill to the Cemetry on the hillside and was an enjoyable time, some people stayed behind :). We have so far had witnessed several wildlife along the way deer, squirrels, rabbits, etc. But I had heard there was a Mountain Goat hanging out off a dead-end trail on the Devil Anse system and that’s where we headed to. Here we are at the spot. I call for the Mountain Goat, holding a twizzler in hand. James Couch is over making goat noises. I see some white over by a rock, but it was nothing and then all of a sudden, I said there he is 150′ up the mountainside in all the foliage coming down. I am pointing and walking around, and everyone is like where? where? I am like right there and some thought I was messing with him trying to pull over a good prank. Then all of a sudden everyone saw her coming down. We had an enjoyable time with the Mountain Goat that turned up her nose to my twizzler dangling in my hand and settled for some light chips, not wanting any of the dark chips. We then headed towards Matewan and upon arrival stopped at David Hatfield store that also owns the Bed N Breakfast we have stayed at several times for everyone to buy a souvenir. Soon enough we were off leaving the Devil Anse trail system heading into our third trail system Buffalo Mountain. We come across a Freedom Tree for the ladies “See Picture” and then was off for a group picture at the Mushroom Rock. We then continued towards Williamson stopping at old mine shafts and cool other places we had seen along the way. This time we were heading to our final stop “Almost Heaven”. By this time group members were getting tired, hungry and wore out after their 88.1 mile Mountain Adventure through three HMT trails systems. We finally arrived at Almost Heaven and everyone took their turn on the swing having a great time. Actually, Terry Lynch was afraid he would swing off the mountain and passed. We finally finished todays group ride at 3 Guys Pizza & Brew for some good ole fellowship. By the time we got out of there it was dark and we went on a 41.4 mile road trip through the mountain roads of West Virginia back to Twin Hollow Campground and Cabins in Gilbert, WV. What a fun time with a ton of trail riding. No one was left with jitters on riding more after 130 miles!

Pictures:

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Videos:

Track Logs

Gilbert 2 Matewan 2 Williams VIA Trails 88.1 miles

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Williams 2 Gilbert via road 41.4 miles

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