Natchez Parkway and on to Natchez, MS
October 14, 2015 – Day 41
Vicksburg, MS to Vicksburg, MS 0 miles – Total Miles 2,536
Weather 84, sunny, light wind
Spent the day exploring Vicksburg – really cool city would like to come back to check out some of the attractions we were not able to see on this trip. Spent most of our time in the historic downtown area exploring.
The day started with a great breakfast at the B & B – Andrew is quite the cook and made us a delicious southern breakfast. We also got to know the other couple staying at the B & B Tommy and Vicki from South Carolina very nice older couple who we enjoyed getting to know over breakfast.
The day of course goes too fast and soon we need to get ready to take off the next day.
October 15, 2015 – Day 42
Vicksburg, MS to Natchez, MS 93 miles – Total Miles – 2,629
Weather 94 degrees, sunny and variable winds
Started the day early to try to get in before the heat got too bad. Andrew was gracious enough to get up early and make us a special breakfast before we left. He made us amazing fruit smoothies, fresh baked blueberry muffins and hard boiled eggs. It was a great breakfast to get us started with lots of energy. Our stay at the Bazsinsky B & B was great and the house is very nice and not too over done like some B&B’s Andrew and his partner David are great hosts and are more than willing to help in anyway. It could not have been a better stay.
So we were on the road by sun up 7:30am. Getting out of Vicksburg was pretty easy and before we knew it we were on the Natchez Trace Parkway peddling away to cover the 49 miles our route took us on the Trace. The Trace Parkway is a bicyclists dream – the road is in great shape, pretty much level, very low traffic, 50 miles per hour speed limit on the Trace and no commercial vehicles allowed to travel on it – so no trucks. The road is also shaded which was very helpful today with the hot sunny 94 degree day.
The Trace Parkway for those of you who are not familiar with it. The entire parkway is 444 miles long and goes from Natchez, MS to Nashville TN. Originally the route was used by Native Americans and was well enough established it was included in the earliest maps draw by the French in 1733. The Old Trace is best know as the return route by farmers from the Ohio River region who would float down the river with their crops to Natchez and New Orleans – then sell the lumber from the boat and then travel back the most direct route the Trace. It was the most heavily traveled route in the Southwest during the 1800’s. At it’s peak before steamboats became the favorite means of travel there were more than 20 inns along the Trace. Today only one remains.
Once we got off the Trace we only had about 15 miles to go to get to Natchez – it was a nice ride thru some amazing forested areas. Natchez is a nice city and we have been able to explore it a bit this evening. Tomorrow they have their big balloon festival going on and every hotel room is booked in the city and the place will be packed – luckily we will be heading south to get away from the crowds – although it would have been cool to check out the balloon fest.