Routes across MS, Columbus to the Mississippi

Discussion in 'Tejas and the Gulf States' started by JBMorse, Feb 24, 2010.

  1. JBMorse

    JBMorse Been here awhile

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    Hi,
    I'm in the midst of my ongoing planning of this summer's big trip. I'm finding these regional forums a great source of route advice from folks who live in these regions.
    There are trip planning details in my sig, but the jist is this: GF and I, graduating this year, riding our old Honda from NH to the West and back before we can't. Taking 8 weeks to see the sights and interesting places. Lots of camping along the way, and avoiding highways.
    So, the leg I'm currently looking at is the one from Birmingham to Memphis. I was thinking about crossing Mississippi from the Columbus area West to the Mississippi River, then north along the river into Memphis. I'm a blues lover and always wanted to get a glimpse of that part of the country.
    Can anyone recommend good roads along the way, or interesting towns/sites?
    We'll probably have two days for this leg. Back roads are great, dirt roads are fine, and highways are tolerable for short spurts.
    Thanks for any advice!
    Jeremy B
    #1
  2. backwoodsKLR

    backwoodsKLR Ride more, Post Less.

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    This may help, may not: (MS DOT Scenic Byways maps)

    http://www.gomdot.com/Divisions/IntermodalPlanning/Resources/Maps/ScenicByways.aspx


    You could always take the Natchez Trace – All American Road from up around Columbus down to Jackson, cut over to Vicksburg, and then follow the Mississippi Delta Great River Road going back north towards Memphis and catch the blues trails and sights going through the Delta...

    For a taste of the old Delta Blues, you can try to work a stop in to stay here: The Shack Up Inn

    If interested, I'm sure many more suggestions are forthcoming!!
    #2
  3. Supahflid

    Supahflid Wheelieless

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    +1. That's about as good as it's gonna get. If you need a place to stay when you come through, be sure to let us all know.
    #3
  4. Trophy1298

    Trophy1298 Vicarious Cowboy

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    +2

    The Trace is a must do for the history and serenity. Free camping olong the Trace as well and 2 free campgrounds I know of, may be more. One is Rocky Springs http://www.nps.gov/natr/upload/RockySpringsInfoPage-3.pdfand the other is Merewhether-Lewis http://www.nps.gov/natr/upload/MLInfoPage.pdf

    Heading up the Blues Trail you may want to check out Great River Road State park http://home.mdwfp.com/Parks/ParksInfo.aspx?id=88

    Also, Google "Great Mississippi River Road" for a number of places and ideas for the area.

    Like Supah said, let us know if you need a place to sleep or just some phone numbers should you have any problems along this stretch. Sounds like a fun trip.
    #4
  5. Cliff-77

    Cliff-77 Lost Adventurer

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    You like blues&coming to Ms.check out,www.msbluestrail.org/museums BB King Mu.in Indianola,Delta Blues Mu.in Clarksdale,Hwy61 Blues Mu. in Leland.come on&check it out...Cliff.<HWY61BLUES p on.Cliff.< out&come it etc.check Mu.-Leland>
    #5
  6. eeore39648

    eeore39648 Long timer

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    looks like you came to the right place. These first responders, are great sources. BackwoodsKLR, Trophy1298, Suphaflid, Cliff, you get the picture.
    +3 if you a place to stay, or need help.
    Hope you post a ride report.
    Happy Trails!
    #6
  7. JBMorse

    JBMorse Been here awhile

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    Thanks everyone for the great route/stop suggestions! I'm going to do some google mapping so I can save these ideas. Also, I really appreciate the offers to stay! We're tenting most of the trip, so all we'd need is tent space. I may just hit you up on the offers. I guess "southern hospitality" isn't just a catch phrase!
    Thanks again,
    Jeremy B
    BTW, eerore, we'll definitely post a ride report either during or after the trip. You can follow the planning blog in my sig if you want more details for now.
    #7
  8. Trophy1298

    Trophy1298 Vicarious Cowboy

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    #8
  9. wolfy317

    wolfy317 Addicted to BMW

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    I definitely suggest the trace, BUT it really doesn't run anywhere close to Columbus just so you know. I'm not aware of any real good roads that run from Columbus to the direction your taking, but you can always hit 45n out of columbus and go north to Tupelo and take the trace down from there, or if you want less four lane time, come straight through to starkville, and then take hwy 389 north to the trace, and then you could take the trace down to the river, and then find a route for the leg to Memphis. I live in Starkville (30 miles W of Columbus), and if you need a place to crash or just want to stop for a home cooked meal, give me a shout. You might pm Anticyclone as well, he lives in columbus.
    #9
  10. JBMorse

    JBMorse Been here awhile

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    Thanks everyone!
    So what we might do, since there aren't any great East-West roads across this part of MS, is simply follow 82 from Columbus to Greenville. I would veer north, where some other nice roads appear on the map, but I really want to pass through Itta Bena, Greenwood , and Indianola, for the blues history and for the farmlands. From Greenville, we'll follow the River Road up to Memphis.
    Of course this may change depending on our mood/weather/star alignment, etc. We're just outlining a basic route to follow, leaving time for side trips or scenic stops.
    Wolf, we might just hit you and/or anticyclone up for tent space. I'll PM you with details when I know more. This would be around June 20, give or take a couple days.
    And, yup, we're going to Barber! I want to see the museum, and the GF would like to visit Birmingham for the history.
    Thanks again!
    Jeremy B
    #10
  11. backwoodsKLR

    backwoodsKLR Ride more, Post Less.

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    Don't forget one of my favorite stops up there...

    Morgan Freeman's Ground Zero Blues Club:
    http://www.groundzerobluesclub.com/

    [​IMG]

    A very bike friendly place...

    [​IMG]

    And the Shack Up Inn that I mentioned in my first post:
    [​IMG]
    #11
  12. carabnsol

    carabnsol should have been a cowboy

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    Wear your best, most ventilated gear! Guaranteed to be hot and humid.:knary
    #12
  13. Supahflid

    Supahflid Wheelieless

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    Oohh, good advice. And don't forget the skeeter spray! The skeeters in the Delta are big as hummingbirds!
    #13
  14. tslaw

    tslaw aged n00b

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    Lot of people like to see the Vicksburg Military Park when visiting Mississippi - it's about 90 miles south of Hwy 82 on Hwy 61. It's worth the extra day:lol3
    #14
  15. wolfy317

    wolfy317 Addicted to BMW

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    I'm sure you've thought about it, but if not, you might consider gathering phone numbers from a few different areas of each state that you plan to visit for breakdowns or emergencies or whatever :D

    Toss me a PM if you'd like, and I'll give ya my number. I'm jealous if your trip. sounds awesome.
    #15
  16. Supahflid

    Supahflid Wheelieless

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    +1. Sounds like I'll be out of your way, but if you want my numbers send a pm!
    #16
  17. MSrider

    MSrider Rebel with a sixfiddy

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    +1
    #17
  18. OBHoodlum

    OBHoodlum Lost

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    Shoot me a pm if ya want a number for someone that is close to Memphis. If I am not home, I can still get my friends that I ride cruisers with to help ya out. If you need to know anything about the Memphis area for your trip feel free to ask, if I don't know the answer I can find out for you. If you are planning on staying a nite or two in Memphis, DONT. Come just south of the state line and stay in Olive Branch, Southaven, or Hernando MS. Less crime in Mississppi.

    O-ya if you plan on replacing tires or anything like that on your trip and think you will be in the Memphis area when you need it done, let me know. You can ship any parts to my friends shop and we can hook ya up.
    #18
  19. stinkfinger

    stinkfinger Chickenfat dirtbiker

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    p.m. me if ya need any mechanical help- have lifts, tools,welder,
    tires/balance or place to pitch a tent- 30 miles south of memphis

    Like OBhoodlum said, be careful about stayin in memphis, best to
    stay/camp just south over the stateline in mississippi

    Tony
    #19