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Cycling the Natchez Trace Pkwy

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Cycling the Natchez Trace Pkwy

Old 03-25-18, 03:16 PM
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one4smoke
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Cycling the Natchez Trace Pkwy

I'd like to ride the entire distance before long, and would like some tips and advice from those that have done this, and/or have experiences riding the Trace. Recommendations on best time of year (Spring or Fall), best places to stay and eat along the way, can't miss things to see and do, what to expect, what to avoid, etc...

Basically, what to do and what not to do. Thanks..
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Old 03-25-18, 05:32 PM
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We rode the Trace May, 2000. Here is a link to our journal. http://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/myfine2000
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Old 03-25-18, 06:44 PM
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Originally Posted by debade View Post
We rode the Trace May, 2000. Here is a link to our journal. http://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/myfine2000
Thanks! Really enjoyed following your journey. You guys planning on doing it again sometime? Anything you would've done differently?
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Old 03-25-18, 07:06 PM
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Originally Posted by one4smoke View Post
Thanks! Really enjoyed following your journey. You guys planning on doing it again sometime? Anything you would've done differently?
Being about 18 years ago, not sure what I would do differently. Perhaps I would spend more time in Nashville. It is a great town and easy to bike. Depending on your age, you may find East Nashville to be really hip.

The Trace was one of my least favorite rides for the biking but that is a comparison, not an absolute. Having said that the B&B in Jackson was one of the best places we stayed on our many trips. But, at that time it was recently purchased by a couple of guys from NY who dressed-up in period clothes and kept the house as close to the time period as possible/comfortable. I expect they no longer own it or run it as that was 18 years ago and I do not remember them being very young. But, you should check it out. It was expensive. We did one special stop on our weekly trips and that was it.

Sorry, I can't be more helpful. I will say that some of my favorite rides were Oregon Coast, Russian River Valley, Around lake Michigan, Cabot Trail in Nova Scotia (starting from Halifax), Montreal to Quebec City, and C&O/GAP.
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Old 03-26-18, 12:38 PM
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Anyone else?
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Old 03-26-18, 03:04 PM
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Originally Posted by one4smoke View Post
Anyone else?
No I can't offer any information in fact I found the information supplied very helpful for I too have thought of do that ride,,
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Old 03-26-18, 05:02 PM
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Since you are local to Nashville, you've probably ridden on the Trace at least as far down as Gordon House at the Hwy 50 exit. That first section and then below to above Tupelo is by far the most scenic. Around Tupelo and Jackson they use the Trace as a city street, lots of traffic. Services along the Trace, other than water and camping are very limited. If you need food you have to get off the Trace. Stores near the Trace tend to be marginal and prone to being closed. Frankly, if you ride down to Merriwether Lewis one day, to Tishomingo St Park in MS the second day, do an out and back from Tishomingo the third day, you will have ridden the best of it. Fall is the best season. Rain and pine pollen are hazards in the Spring. Winter is probably second best if you are prepared for bitter cold, though snow is not common. Summer would be inconceivable.
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Old 04-01-18, 05:22 PM
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Originally Posted by shelbyfv View Post
Since you are local to Nashville, you've probably ridden on the Trace at least as far down as Gordon House at the Hwy 50 exit. That first section and then below to above Tupelo is by far the most scenic. Around Tupelo and Jackson they use the Trace as a city street, lots of traffic. Services along the Trace, other than water and camping are very limited. If you need food you have to get off the Trace. Stores near the Trace tend to be marginal and prone to being closed. Frankly, if you ride down to Merriwether Lewis one day, to Tishomingo St Park in MS the second day, do an out and back from Tishomingo the third day, you will have ridden the best of it. Fall is the best season. Rain and pine pollen are hazards in the Spring. Winter is probably second best if you are prepared for bitter cold, though snow is not common. Summer would be inconceivable.
Your take on Bed & Baths, restaurants, things to see and do along the way?
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Old 04-02-18, 11:11 AM
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Don't know about B&Bs and AFAIK there aren't any restaurants near the Trace other than Nashville, Tupelo, Jackson and Natchez. Maybe some convenience stores but they come and go. There are some roadside exhibits and markers that are marginally interesting. Lots of history in Natchez, worth a day or two.
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Old 05-21-18, 07:47 PM
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I know this is a late post, but I would second Shelby's comment about traffic on the lower parts of the Trace. I've been on the Trace around Jackson, MS in my car and it is used as a city street. Lots of traffic, no shoulder what so ever and they don't follow the speed limit. Our group of riders lost a friend on the Trace to a car when he took his bike with him on a business trip to Jackson. I would suggest scoping out your intended ride in your car first. Look to see what the traffic is like during rush hours around populated areas before you take the risk on your bike.
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Old 07-19-18, 12:46 PM
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I just moved to Alabama and am about 40 miles away from it. Haven't riden it yet, but I drove it a few times.
Local news said a few weeks ago that the state police are buying three unmarked cars and stepping up enforcement for speeders and unsafe drivers for the trail though. That would be a plus.
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