Sunday, May 18, 2008
"Heroism is latent in every human soul, however humble or unknown.
In great deeds, something abides.
In great fields, something stays.
Spirits linger to consecrate the ground.
And reverent men and women from afar, and generations that know us not,
shall come to this field to ponder and to dream.
And the power of the vision will pass into their souls."
--Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain
Deal's Gap, a section of US Highway 129 along the southwest border of Smokey Mountains National Park, is considered one of the penultimate tests of a motorcyclist's skill. The tightly twisted road, known as "The Dragon," boasts 318 sharp curves in it's 11-mile length. The "Tree of Shame," an otherwise unassuming Sycamore, carries the symbolic remains of those who failed to complete the course, having been "bit by the Dragon."