Jump to content

Natchez Trace Parkway trip


Kemp

Recommended Posts

  • Supporting Member

It's a great scenic ride, IMO. Lots of interesting stops and views.

Just imagine how much fun you could have if the speed limit was higher! The northern end has lots of twisties but the speed limit takes away a lot of the fun!  Cruise control is a must have!

  • Thumbsup 1

2020 Tracer 900GT /1978 Suzuki GS750E /1978 Suzuki GS1000 /1982 Suzuki GS1100E /1999 Honda GL1500SE

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Supporting Member

Great pics, now I have road trip envy

Looks like a great way to unwind!

  • Thumbsup 1

2015 FJ-09 / FJR touring bags / oil plug mod / Evotech rad guard / SW Motech bash plate / VStream touring windshield / Seat Concepts:  Sport Touring / Vcyclenut ABS rings (speedo correction) / Cosmo RAM mount

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Quote
48 minutes ago, Suzukiguy said:

Just imagine how much fun you could have if the speed limit was higher! The northern end has lots of twisties but the speed limit takes away a lot of the fun!  Cruise control is a must have!

YES! I was coming around a corner on the northern end doing 50-55, which did not feel that extreme, when I spotted an unmarked SUV at one of the pull outs. I quickly moderated my speed and it felt glacial.

I think I saw a total of four patrol cars on the entire trip, but two of them had a car pulled over so I know they do enforce the speeds. I got passed several times, and some of them disappeared, so they had to be in the 60-65 mph range. I just wasn't willing to write that check.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Quote
2 hours ago, Ride365 said:

I have been debating running the NTP, perhaps this is my year?

It's not a knee-dragging, adrenaline-filled ride, but it was fun for a couple of days. I spent a day getting there and a day coming back, leaving two days to ride the Trace. It probably could be done in one, but some of that would depend on your willingness to push the speed limit.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 3/28/2023 at 10:04 PM, Kemp said:

Living in Arkansas, I'm lucky to have some top-notch roads just a few moments from my garage. However, I've had the itch to explore beyond the state lines to see what else is out there, and I settled on the Natchez Trace Parkway as my first solo outing on my Tracer. It seemed an easy reach from central Arkansas and an easy ride over a few days. So, this past week, I packed up and headed south to Natchez, MS to start the trek.

On my way south, I made it through Hamburg before a stop in Monticello for a quick lunch and Cuban coffee.

IMG_3723.thumb.jpg.0fb6ea86c43d01817ae55e493bda6857.jpg

In no time, I was making my way through Louisiana before crossing the river over to Natchez. I spent the night there and explored the town a little bit. I need to go back with my wife to poke around some more.

IMG_3730.thumb.jpg.3733cf1d8afc449327d778ed1b1fe555.jpg

IMG_3743.thumb.jpg.8dafccba6da78944f81e2077198b3ea4.jpg

I had decided to go south to north after learning that the northern section was a little curvier and fun (but failed to pick up on the 40 mph speed limit there) and began my trip on a cold but sunny morning.

With the intention of overnighting in Tupelo, and trying my best to adhere to the posted speed limit (cruise control made that a bit easier), I decided to make a few stops along the way. I had already determined that I wanted to see the sunken areas of the Trace as well as the Cypress Swamp, and then play it by ear for some of the others.

IMG_3745.thumb.jpg.a7f13e640ad166569287f5ecaaebb69e.jpg

IMG_3753.thumb.jpg.de23755968b1e629b65dc52e9066dcef.jpg

I also had planned to do some video along the way, but realized I left my chin mount at home before I left Conway, so no GoPro. No worries, I had my 360 camera and did do some video around Natchez, but along the Parkway, the clamp was on my hand guard, but I noticed at one of the stops that it had magically disappeared. If any of you notice it along the road, you're welcome.

IMG_3757.thumb.jpg.337e3f21e289f8cac0f2302cd951839d.jpg

Am I the only rider to put a Tracer on the old Trace? Yeah, I thought not.

Anyway, the first day was beautiful and there were plenty of dogwoods in bloom. Spring had arrived in Mississippi. But, I guess Tupelo didn't get the message; I woke up to a 29 degree morning and a frosty seat.

IMG_3768.thumb.jpg.9aa343ca03198c462de448bd7a5cdbef.jpg

Fortunately, my gear served me well. I stayed relatively warm and comfortable as the temperatures warmed throughout the day. That made the trek north on day two quite enjoyable.

IMG_3779.thumb.jpg.c34fd78396f4d36c0e07a7e950bf0627.jpg

IMG_3785.thumb.jpg.4e7a82ce3710f7efa564ec4884e42211.jpg

IMG_3786.thumb.jpg.7fa909553443ff58a97ec3bbe7269737.jpg

It was still icy in places at Fall Hollow:

IMG_3798.thumb.jpg.19dfcd5f7e40cd8bd1bb1d3b41edaea8.jpg

IMG_3806.thumb.jpg.ded429fea7cae80bc34e8b6f56ff0814.jpg

And, I thought the sign for the northern terminus would be right at the end of the road, not at the pull off a mile or two back, so I missed it. But, in my mind, this IS the sign for the northern terminus:

IMG_3810.thumb.jpg.9c286dee60f1b93cc7aad16f11d49fd7.jpg

Really, I think the main reason I rode from south to north was to reward myself with biscuits at the end.

IMG_3812.thumb.jpg.3e025c2b185ec1c0ba7ae3baccf6bd8a.jpg

IMG_3813.thumb.jpg.0035d50df0811f7af336f89ff8adb465.jpg

The slog back home via I-40 was every bit as glamorous as you think, with the added caveat of rain that started in Jackson, TN, and pretty much stuck with me all the way through Arkansas. I had had enough of rain and dodging trucks and decided to stop in Forrest City at Delta Q barbecue. This is one you don't want to miss! Had a great sandwich and had the place to myself.

70111268708__5E10FA98-F6D0-4407-946E-99F43EB8024B.thumb.jpg.68ed1fde3ff596a7f02ad03e3e639f3e.jpg

All in all, it was a great trip. Not a challenging road, and pretty relaxing. Oh, there was one detour for paving on the parkway, and I learned that my namesake it running for sheriff in Tishomingo County, Mississippi!

IMG_3774.thumb.jpg.340ca6cd4f1c753b75af9cf487d491c4.jpg

Now, to plan the next trip.

 

IMG_3821.jpg

looks like a really fun ride!

  • Thumbsup 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×