Top 3 Adrenaline Packed Ways to Play in the South
There are New Year's resolutions, and then there are summer resolutions.
1. Take A Road Trip
Late morning sun shines through every window of the Collins Quarter. Beneath an intricate Edison-bulb light fixture, owner Anthony Debreceny hunches over several short stacks of paperwork at a tall bar table, the restaurant’s exposed brick walls forming a fittingly industrial backdrop.
Though his shoulders seem tense, his countenance softens noticeably once the topic of motorcycles arises. Debreceny isn’t your average weekend rider; his travels span 74 countries “at last count.” He speaks of his orange KTM 990 Adventure with a hushed reverence typically reserved only for saints, celebrities and war buddies. It’s befitting, though. In all Debreceny’s travels, he has only ever ridden with another person twice: once after meeting a stranger in an early-internet chat room for motorcycle aficionados, and once with a friend he met while working in Japan.
“He had what I call ‘Japan Syndrome,’ which is what happens when you go to Japan, get treated special and have a hard time leaving,” Debreceny explains. “But he neglected to tell me he’d never ridden a motorcycle before.” Debreceny prefers to ride alone, which is exactly what he did in the spring of 2003. It was his first solo ride through the United States, but it certainly wouldn’t be his last.
“Riding solo gives you a lot of time with yourself. It’s introspective,” Debreceny says. “So I got all kitted up and took a plane to the States.”
His adventure took him across the country. From Buffalo, N.Y., to Atlanta, and to the Florida Panhandle; from the Blue Ridge Parkway to the Kettle Valley Railway, the steepest incline in North America, Debreceny biked 36,000 miles during the six-week trip.
“I partied harder and spent a lot more money than I thought I was going to spend,” Debreceny admits. He holds the memories of his cross-country rides close, particularly because he doesn’t ride much anymore. “I still go on a couple little trips with friends I’ve met through the restaurant,” Debreceny says pensively. “But I’m so busy these days. I guess I’m being an adult now.”
2. Dolphin Watch off Kiawah Island
In the area that Captain Jacob Nickerson of St. John’s Kayaks operates his pontoon-boat dolphin-watching tours, the Atlantic Bottlenose population numbers 100, and the pod never travels more than 20 miles from Kiawah Island.
3. Sail the Charleston Harbor
AquaSafaris offers private-charter sailing tours of Charleston Harbor, going past highlights of Fort Sumter, the USS Yorktown aircraft carrier and the Morris Island Lighthouse. Note that a two-day notice is necessary when booking.