Dawn Taylor

Member Stories

Dawn Taylor

“Am I insane?” It seemed like a fair question to ask myself at the time. My husband Richard and I were making our way toward the famous Tail of the Dragon in Deals Gap, North Carolina, and I was having second thoughts.

I had only been riding a few years, and my confidence was low. Being a superstitious person, I decided to leave it up to fate. I flipped a quarter (one from 1967, the year I was born) and said to myself: “Tails, I’m going to ride the Dragon’s Tail; heads, I’m not.” Tails it was – Dragon’s Tail, here I come!

Later, as we approached the famous stretch of road boasting 318 curves in just 11 miles, the road seemed to change suddenly, with each curve sharper and more intense than the one before. I thought, “I’m doing it!” But minutes later I saw a sign up ahead for “Deals Gap” and my heart sank. We pulled over at a store and I said, “You mean … we’re not on the Dragon yet?”

Richard just laughed (the nerve!). “No, it starts there,” he said, pointing ahead. “I changed my mind, I can’t do this,” I replied, panicking a little at the thought of all the bad things that could happen.

“You'll be fine, let's go,” Richard said simply.

I stalled as much as I could, claiming I had to visit the bathroom, then alleging that I wanted to look around the store. “Just do it,” I finally told myself. And off we went up the mountain.

Wow, it was beautiful! The scenery was breathtaking and the air was crisp and fresh. After a while I started to relax and just ride, and before I knew it, we were at the end. When we stopped I smiled at Richard and said, “Can we do that again?”

I know many H.O.G.® members have ridden the Dragon multiple times, but if you haven’t, it's a definite must-ride. I enjoyed it so much we’re already planning another trip this fall. Want to join us?