The Natchez Trace Parkway
Getting Ready To Ride The Natchez Trace
Dee and I took off work Friday Aug. 30th to make a 4 day weekend of the Labor Day Holiday. As it has been all this sumer rain was in the forecast so we left for my brothers home in Selmer, Tn a little late around 9:A.M. to let the weather settle down. The 330 mile ride to Tim's home was good, no rain to speak of. The ride took a little longer than we planed due to at stop at the Natchez Trace Harley in Tuscumbia, AL to get Dee a hydration vest to wear under her mesh warm weather jacket. We arrived at Tim and Mindy's around 5: P.M. Even though it was a little late we still had time for good visit and a great home made supper. Tim and Mindy's place is real nice and setting out under the carport made me think of all the time spent at Dad's place. He loved to set on the carport in a old rocker with his feet propped up on the brick wall like at Tim's.
The Natchez Trace Parkway Ride
After a world class breakfast prepared by Miss Mindy we pulled out of Tim's around 8:30 A.M. . To get to our entrance of the Natchez Trace Parkway we ran south through Corinth, MS and then east to Cherokee, AL Due to time we only planned to run the upper most 125 miles of the Natchez Trace from Cherokee, AL to the northern terminus of the Parkway (milepost 444) that intersects with Tennessee Highway 100 about 17 miles southwest of downtown Nashville.
At the Natchez Trace Parkway, the term "viewshed" is simply defined as what can be seen from the Parkway. The landscapes surrounding the Parkway are in a constant state of change due to urban sprawl and changing agricultural patterns. The ride along the Parkway is good, we stopped now and then to see different sights.
Most travelers were anonymous working folks. In the early 1800s through the mid-1820s, “Kaintucks” from the Ohio River Valley floated cash crops, livestock, and other materials down the Mississippi River on wooden flatboats. At Natchez or New Orleans, they sold their goods, sold their boats for lumber, and walked or rode horseback toward home via the Old Trace. As the road was improved, stands (inns) provided lodging, food, and drink to Trace travelers. Today the Natchez Trace provides a near-continuous greenway from the southern Appalachian foothills of Tennessee to the bluffs of the lower Mississippi River. Along the way are sites like Emerald Mound, a national historic landmark and one of the largest American Indian mounds in the United States; and Mount Locust, one of only two surviving stands.
We all had a good time on the ride. This was the first ride that Miss Mindy was along and we really enjoyed her. One of the best parts of the ride came late in the ride on the Parkway when we rode into a thunder storm. The rain came up so fast we didn't have time to get the rain gear on. We stopped at hiking trail pull off and stood pressed up together against a information sign with a small overhang. Standing there laughing and wet was priceless. After the rain let up we rode the last 40 miles or so of the Parkway and saw some deer and turkey along the way. At the end of the Parkway we headed over to I-40 and turned south back to Tim's place.
Dee and I planned to return home on Sunday, but we were having so much fun we decided to stay and ride back Monday. Dee and Mindy paled around all day Sunday while Tim and I waited out the rain that was off and on until early afternoon before we could get a short ride to the Pickwick Dam.
We got up Monday and enjoyed a great breakfast with Tim and Mindy then headed back to Norcross. The ride was good even though we had a little rain on and off. Can't wait until we can go riding with Tim and Mindy again!
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