Natchez Trace Parkway
I was going a little stir crazy in June of 2020! Everyone was in the midst of a COVID shutdown and I was following all community guidelines. I was wracking my brain for a socially distanced getaway. I’d always wanted to drive the Trace. That’s when I hatched a plan. I’d drive the entire length of the Natchez Trace Parkway which spans 444 miles from Natchez, Mississippi to Nashville, Tennessee.
A friend (who also felt the walls caving in) graciously offered to accompany me on the road trip. We had the most unplanned plan. We packed sandwiches, drinks, and snacks in a cooler for lunches. As we felt like winding down for the evening each day, we made online hotel reservations (being sure to stay where there was complimentary breakfasts). Each evening we ate at a local restaurant for dinner. The plan was to encounter as few people as possible. It worked out great!
Driving from home in Louisiana, we traveled North until we met up with the trail around Jackson, Mississippi. We traveled North leisurely on the Parkway, stopping at most every roadside attraction. It’s such a beautiful ride. The speed limit is 55 mph so it was easy to just enjoy the scenery. At the end of day one, we spent the night in Tupelo, Mississippi. The next day we traveled the rest of the Parkway ending in Nashville. On day three, we drove all the way back on the interstate traveling south. There was part of the Parkway we missed so we caught it in the return trip home. We traveled from Jackson to Natchez on the last day of the trip. The city of Natchez, Mississippi is beautiful, by the way. I want to go back to explore the riverfront.
Most attractions have a sign like this signaling it was time for a stop. Some stops were more interesting than others. It was nice to be able to get out and stretch our feet as we took in a bit of history.
Can you imagine walking through this area and thinking of all the people who came through here before you did? In the late 1700’s to the mid 1800’s there was lots of travel here.
The soil in this area is sandy and the human, horse, and wagon traffic that passed over the Trace wore it down as deep as ten feet in places.
This is Little Sand Creek. Of course I was in heaven because of the number of rocks. We only stopped for a little while. I found this awesome agate in the creek. It ended up polishing up nicely.
Here she is all polished! Look for Tumbling Tutorial page if you want to follow me on a tumble.
The waterfalls along the Trace were gorgeous sights! The one on the left is Fall Hollow and is right off the Trace. The other is Jackson Falls. It is accessible by walking down a very steep cemented trail. The climb back to the car was a workout!
If you know me at all, you will know I’m a Lewis and Clark fan. I hit the jackpot stumbling across this monument and historic site. What a cool place.
This is a civil war gravesite which contains the remains of thirteen civil war soldiers. Notice the rocks and coins on the headstones. Click the links to learn more.
There are a few stops where you can see Indian mounds. This is the Bynum Indian mound. site.
Here is the Double Arch Bridge at the northern terminus. We ended our second day here and accidentally arrived at the perfect time. Each evening, people gather on the bridge to watch the sunset. It was truly magical to watch the sun go down here. I’m assuming the sunrise would be just as spectacular.
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