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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
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October 26-28, 2018, (Dragon Run on the 27th).

“Back of the Dragon” is a 32 mile drive from Tazewell, VA to Marion, VA. A classic twisty road, the two-lane ribbon of asphalt known as VA-16 features blind curves, various switchbacks, and steep elevations changes over 3 mountains in a rural setting with a 55 MPH speed limit for most of the length that will cause trouble if you don't pay attention. It's not all constant curves and corners though, there's the occasional straight-away that allows the driver to relax for a moment or two or to pass any local cars not running up to speed.

The 2018 edition of the Back of the Dragon GTG and Road Rally (BoD 6.0) includes cruising Big Walker Mountain, Grape Field Road, Burkes Garden Road (to the valley and back), rolling through Tazewell and culminates with a run down The Back of the Dragon itself. The route, beginning at the host hotel in Wytheville and terminating at Hungry Mother State Park just outside Marion, is approximately 96 miles (some 600 curves and corners) and takes about 2.5 hours not including planned stops (3). **The route above may be modified or added to, details will be posted if so.**

This mid-autumn get-together and rally is the perfect complement to this past May’s Tail of the Dragon GTG and offers amazing twisty road adventures in the scenic Virginia mountains at the height of the fall foliage season.

Please Note:
1- There is no designated “Leisure Group” for Back of the Dragon. If you prefer a more casual run, please position your car to the rear of the line up. If, during the run, the pace is too fast, feel free to signal the cars behind to pass on the straights or reposition at convenient opportunities -- we'll all catch up to one another at the stops along the way. Along the route, there's only 1 or 2 places to take a wrong turn and those will be pointed out.

2- It is a public highway with local traffic and law enforcement so be forewarned.

3- While the speed limit ranges from 40 to 55, drive within your ability and allow a safe distance between you and the car ahead of you.

4- Back of the Dragon 6.0 is hosted by the Mid Atlantic States Beetle Group, a subgroup of newbeetle.org, but we do not require you to drive a Beetle (though it is preferred). BoD is scheduled for the last Saturday in October that is not Halloween.

Weather*
2013- sweater/coat; some snow on hillsides
2014- short sleeves; sunny and warmish
2015- cool; some sun, pleasant
2016- cool to warm, overnight frost
2017- cold and rainy
(*This is a mid-fall event in the mountains and it does get cool to cold at night.)

As far as accommodatuons, Best Western Wytheville Inn, 355 Nye Rd., Wytheville, VA, 276-228-7300, is the host hotel for the event and the location for the start of the rally. A room block and special price has been established there at a rate of $68.99 plus tax per night for the 26th and 27th. Book directly with the hotel and mention my name, Donald Eaton or Beetle Group, *and date* for the rate. (If they transfer you to a general booking site, call back later. The rate is direct with the hotel) There are many other accommodation options in the area and you are welcome to book where you like though most activities will take place at the Best Western.

You can come earlier and/or stay longer if you want; (we do Thursday-Monday.) :).


B0D 6.0 is a bit more casual than Tail of the Dragon in that there are no real set pieces other than the drive itself. However, this is what we did last year and plan for this year:

Friday (26th):

Travel day and hotel check in (though some come on Thursday now for extra time in the area.)

8PM: (optional) Caravan from Best Western Wytheville to nearby Crackerbarrel for dinner

Saturday (27th):
8AM: (optional) buffet breakfast at nearby Shoneys - caravan at 8AM. Best Western also has a Continental breakfast for those staying there.

10AM: Driver's Meeting at Best Western

10:30AM: Road Rally begins from Best Western following new route.

2PM +/-: Rally Ends at Hungry Mother State Park then

Lunch in Marion or picnic in park (optional)
You choose activities (optional)

8PM - Group Dinner (optional) We ate at the nearby steakhouse in 2017

Sunday:
6AM - 9AM Best Western Continental Breakfast in "playpen" (optional)

8AM Big Walker Tunnel/Mountain Run (about one hour). Super Sport Class.

Truck Stop Breakfast (optional) also know as Second Breakfasts

Departure (for some)

You pick activities for those staying over. If there are enough stay-overs and interest, a run of US 421 “The Snake” can be arranged for Sunday.
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Momentai!!!
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Oh man! It will be here before you know it! I need to try and start getting some mods done to Bart.

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ToD Maiden Voyager
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Simone & I are in ?
 

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Amateur Professional
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Tentative yes, as long as Hayley doesn't have a competition somewhere that weekend (again!)
 

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Registered
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I am hoping to make it this year! I've been wanting the last few years... as long as I have the PTO (and hopefully Steve will still too!!) we will be there!
 

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Amateur Professional
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The drive to Burke's Garden is everything!

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I think I'm still the record holder for that part of the drive...
 

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Premium Member
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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
24 Beetles and 1 GTI (plus a chase vehicle) left the Best Western for the start of the Back of the Dragon Rally and GTG 6.0 this year (2018). Aside from the square VW, there were (6) New Beetles and (18) +12s, possibly heralding an epochal shift in Beetle demographics regarding future GTGs. Regardless of that, it was a banner year for the event as to number of participants and vehicles. Additionally, more than half were first timers to the event, and by the accounts I have received, everyone enjoyed the Get-together and Rally and plan to return.
 

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ToD Maiden Voyager
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a great weekend, can't wait for next time, and hopefully, Mocha will be back in the game for next year's event! :D
 
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