First let me say the tour was very good and recommend it. Tour guides are excellant but the guard / ticket taker needs better training, procedures, policies and safety awareness.
Warning to motorcycle riders: This is coming from a rider with 40 years experience. I am cautious about gravel conditions and inquired about conditions before traversing this road.
My wife and another couple were traveling on goldwings and decided to visit this plantation.
The gate house is about 100 yards from the road on hard packed gravel. I requested information from the guard and ticket taker as to the condition of the gravel, length and all conditions of the gravel road we would travel to the main house. The guard stated there was some loose gravel around the bend and it was a short distance to the main house. We requested to leave our motorcycles at the gate house and walk to the main house. There was room to park the motorcycles at the gate house and we would not mind the walk in.
We were told several times by the guard we could not park there and needed to drive the road to the house. The guard stated several times the road was good and we would not crash because of gravel. He never stated anything about a incline or bend in the road.I wanted to avoid the gravel but was not given the option to park at the guard house, forcing me to travel the gravel.
Our ladies decided to walk in and we started the drive carefully up the road. This is a single lane road and once you commit to it, you have no way to turn around. You have probably guessed by now that around the bend and up the gravel incline, the wing went down on its side. The gravel was loose and deep from cars pushing it into drifts.
The occupants of the car behind us helped get the wing back on two wheels and we surveyed the damge. Dented muffler, scraped paint, bent foot peg and a cut on my arm.
Made our way to the main house and expressed our displeasure for being given bad information and not being allowed to park at the guard house.The tour guides at the main house told us that several bikes have gone down on the entry road and the guard was supposed to warn motor cycle riders not to travel it..
The exit road goes out the rear of the property and was told not to attempt exiting that way due to gravel and length.
The staff contacted the guard by phone to hold the traffic on the single lane gravel road so we could exit down the entry road. That was along trip down the same road with the same conditions. The guard would not come out the guard house as we came by. There was prior history of motorcycles bring dropped due to the gravel conditions of this road. Management is negligent in in failing to inform the motorcycling public of the hazard and needs to takes steps to do so.
A simple sign advising: Motorcycles should avoid this road due to loose gravel and incline. Please park here and walk in .
It was a long ride back to Texas with a damaged bike and a injured arm. Thankfully our ladies were not on the bikes and there was no damage that prevented operating the motorcycle on the return home trip. Next time I will trust my angel on my shoulder and not the staff of a facility.