So, a lit­tle re-cap-over-lap:   Upon Smoky Joe’s rec­om­men­da­tion, I’d trav­eled down in to the Shawnee National For­est to head up to High Knob to watch the sun­set.   As I cruised through the wind­ing for­est road, I was struck by the sheer beauty of the tree lined tar­mac. After hav­ing trav­eled through thou­sands of Kilo­me­ters of flat and rolling prairie, I’d arrived some­where famil­iar, serene and very at-home.

Pulling in to High Knob, which I’d thought was just a view­point, I real­ized it was actu­ally a camp­ground cater­ing to horse­back rid­ers, and sit­u­ated with prime access to some of the best horse­back rid­ing trails in all of Shawnee.  As I rolled through the grounds, I was imme­di­ately impressed with the numer­ous themed out­build­ings that dot­ted the prop­erty and mostly with the seren­ity of the whole place.  Save the inter­mit­tent whinny of the sta­bled horses, the camp­ground was silent..

It was an easy deci­sion to camp there for the night (after all, I’d hauled a tent down this far) but as I spoke with JoJo, the owner of the camp, she offered a cou­ple of even bet­ter options.  At High Knob, in addi­tion to camp­ing, it is pos­si­ble to sleep in a com­mu­nal bunk house or even in a pri­vate cabin.  I chose the bunk house (as it hap­pened I was the only occupant–it’s usu­ally used by hunters, and, well, this isn’t hunt­ing sea­son). The accom­mo­da­tion is rus­tic, but per­fect for my night’s stay and after mov­ing in I headed to the top of the hill to catch sunset.

After a good night of sleep, and a rather late ten o’clock start, I wan­dered in to the gen­eral store where I found JoJo mind­ing the shop..   Rather than just nip­ping in for a quick cof­fee and hit­ting the road, we ended up chat­ting for the bet­ter part of a cou­ple of hours..   After talk­ing busi­ness, mules vs. horses, cus­tomer ser­vice, travel and cul­ture among other things, JoJo shared a bit more about the area, and the his­tory of High Knob camp­ground. I was thor­oughly impressed with her gen­uine con­cern for ‘her campers’  their horses, and the areas around High Knob.  Were I able to get here more read­ily, I’d seri­ously con­sider get­ting myself on the wait­ing list for one of the few per­ma­nent camp spots that come avail­able each year.  Well, that and I don’t have horses..

Inci­den­tally, accord­ing to JoJo, there are mule peo­ple and there are horse peo­ple (much like dog and cat peo­ple).  And, as it turns out, mules are actu­ally incred­i­bly intel­li­gent and have a high self preser­va­tion instinct (which is help­ful if you’re try­ing to usher the beast through ter­ri­tory that may not be best for the health of either of ya’s)..  The things you learn on the road! :)

Any­way, it’s taken ages to get this post up so I’ll fire a few pho­tos up and a quick video for your perusal! :)

High Knob Cemetery

Telegraph Office

High Knob Saloon

Fort Knob

High Knob Gun Shop

Used fairing-saver
Jay, you’re one of the few peo­ple that’ll appre­ci­ate the irony of this..  I man­aged to dump the bike while I was load­ing it..  Soft ground, the fairing-saver just dug in.. :)  Rookie mistake.

JoJo sent me on my way with a can of her favourite Soda Pop (Red Faygo), and a pack­age of mini-doughnuts, and a direct order to visit the Rocks of the Gods a few miles away from the camp­ground. Which I did, and I’m pleased to have done.. It was really spec­tac­u­lar scenery and I felt it fit­ting to drink my Faygo right there with a toast to JoJo!  Thanks Lady! :)

Red Faygo

The ride to Nashville was pretty unevent­ful after all of this, but enjoy­able nonetheless!

[PostE­dit] Actu­ally one thing about the ride strikes me as note­wor­thy.. Some­how, the south­west­ern cor­ner of Ken­tucky smelled exactly like Grape Soda. I don’t know what it was that caused the deli­cious aroma, but I shall for­ever more asso­ciate Grape pop with Kentucky..

Your map Sirs and Madams:

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2 Responses to Day 9 — High Knob Campground to Nashville TN

  1. JoJo says:

    Well my motor­clcle friend I hope you are doing well.. and made it to the home of your relitive„for a nice visit„,I think of you often„,several other vis­i­tors have come to stay for a night in the bunkhouse but I truly have not enjoyed their com­pany as much as yours„ the ribs were indeed very good„ and I shared them with my daugh­ter and a dear girl­friend for lunch later that day„,my friend if you ever get back in the area again„ please stop in and stay for a few days„,I promise to take you out into the for­est for a really nice horse­back ride among the bluffs and hollers…ride safe, and con­tinue to enjoy the real life„I am sure you have made many a friend along your way and I am one of them„, please take care of your self…

  2. Jordan says:

    Aww! Thanks so much for the note JoJo! (I’m glad you’ve found this post, I meant to drop you a line to let you know it was up but I never quite got around to it! :)
    I’m happy to hear you all enjoyed the ribs! Hope­fully you’ve man­aged to get up to Big Daddy’s for some fresh off the smoker! My visit to High Knob was def­i­nitely a high­light for this trip and most of that was because of you!
    It’s been a blast down here (and yes doing it very safely!) I’m just get­ting ready to head home now, prob­a­bly start out some­time next week, and I haven’t fig­ured out what my route is yet, but I’ve def­i­nitely been think­ing about stop­ping in to see you if I’m head­ing back the same direc­tion.. I’ll drop you an email when all the details are fig­ured out, but I’ll def­i­nitely take you up on that offer of a ride if I do make it back! You take care too and I’ll chat with you soon! :)