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Old 05-27-2013, 04:50 PM   #1
sonicsix OP
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Location: Centreville, AL
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Natchez Trace Parkway - Memorial Day Weekend

Memorial Day Weekend 2013 was almost upon us and we hadn't really made any plans since we were expecting to ride to Maggie Valley, NC in just 2 weeks. A quick check of the 3 day weather forecast and we decided we needed an adventure! So we plotted out a route to enable us to ride the full length of the Natchez Trace Parkway. This year is the 75th anniversary of the Parkway and we felt we had to go because we had already ridden the 75th anniversary of the Blue Ridge Parkway in 2010.

As you can see in the map below, we started in Centreville, AL (D) and rode over to Natchez, MS (B) which is where the Parkway begins. From there, we headed up the Parkway towards Nashville, TN (C) where the Parkway ends. From there, we headed down I-65 back to Centreville, AL. In all, I think we traveled about 1,100 miles over a 3 day period.



As soon as Cynthia got off work on Friday May 24th, we hopped in the van and headed off towards Natchez, MS. We debated on taking the Spyder but 3 full days in the saddle is more than Jerry's back can tolerate. (Jerry has a spinal cord injury and cannot walk very far at all, nor can he stand for very long. He uses a wheelchair for anything other than very short distances.) We took US 82 from Centreville over to I-20/59 in Tuscaloosa and from there we followed I-20 West to Jackson, MS. We did make a pit stop at the Mississippi Welcome Center to stretch our legs and grab a map. Once at Jackson, a short 30 or so miles down I-55 was all that was needed before hopping on to a secondary road that went in the direction of Natchez, MS. We arrived in Natchez, MS about 6:30pm and got a room at the Red Carpet Inn. Nothing fancy but for $50, it was a good night's rest. The local Hampton Inn wanted $150 for one night! Before going to bed, we topped off the fuel tank and grabbed a bite to eat at Popeye's Fried Chicken.

We woke up the next morning about 6:00am. We got dressed and loaded up the van and went to the front lobby to check out. They advertised a continental breakfast but it wasn't what we wanted so we drove over to Sonic for a Supersonic Breakfast Burrito. Dang, we were too early and they weren't open yet! Oh well, Burger King was nearby so we grabbed a quick breakfast from them and headed to the Parkway entrance, which was about a mile or so away.

We looked for Mile Marker 0 but somehow we missed it. Either it wasn't there, someone had run over it or we weren't paying close enough attention... but we did manage a picture of Mile Marker 1 (see below). We also posed by the big sign and that image is over on the left. We carry a tripod with us and our camera has a timer so we can both be in the picture.

We slowly made our way up the Parkway, stopping at every single place we could stop at. The speed limit is 50 MPH so it was easy to slow down with little notice. We took over 400 pictures and you can browse through them below. We made a diligent effort to not miss anything along the way, the only exception was things that were located off the Parkway itself. Sadly, many of the things to see on the Parkway required lots of walking or hiking, neither of which Jerry is able to do... so we didn't have a choice there. Hopefully, the pictures will be enough to peak your interest and for those of you not crippled, you can go see the things we weren't able to.

(Watch your step!)


We stopped in Tupelo, MS and spent the night and we had no idea just how tired we were. By 9pm, we were out like a light! We stayed at the America's Best Inn for $65 and this was a very clean and comfortable motel. The manager was outstanding and I suggest you stay here if ever in Tupelo. We woke up at 5:30am and packed up again. We hopped over to Waffle House for a nice leisurely breakfast. After that, we jumped right back on the Parkway and continued north.

We meandered our way all the way to the end of the Parkway near Nashville, TN. It was kind of sad when we had to exit. The Natchez Trace Parkway is absolutely beautiful and a stunning drive. We are so glad we took the time to drive the full route. Even if you can't ride the whole thing, please make an attempt to at least see part of it. You'll be glad you did.

There are over 400 pictures taken during this trip at http://jerryandcynthia.com/ride_repo...ce_parkway.php




















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sonicsix screwed with this post 05-27-2013 at 04:56 PM
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Old 05-27-2013, 04:57 PM   #2
acejones
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Popeye's ?

You should have eaten at Fat mama's in Natchez. You can eat at Popeye's anyplace.
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Old 05-27-2013, 05:49 PM   #3
Rutabaga
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Nice. Glad you did the mileage in three days and not me.
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Old 05-28-2013, 01:31 AM   #4
tslaw
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Glad you had a great time on the Trace. Thanks for all the photos. Your trip was during a beautiful weekend for adventure.
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Old 05-28-2013, 07:10 AM   #5
sonicsix OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by acejones View Post
Popeye's ?

You should have eaten at Fat mama's in Natchez. You can eat at Popeye's anyplace.
We're not too focused on places to eat when we travel, famous or not. We knew about Fat Mama's in advance but just weren't interested in eating there.
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