Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Natchez Trace — Part 1

Happy and I were on station at a reasonable hour this morning, positioned to begin our leisurely drive of the Natchez Trace. Looking back at my May 2014 post about my first sampling of this part of the road, I don't think I can do any better explaining the history, various sites and overall experience. Rather than repeat it, I will reprise my invitation for you to read it for yourself.

What's different this time, of course, is the season. Rather than lush green everywhere, it's now ebbing toward winter with a pretty good showing of fall color. The sun was low in the sky this morning, making the views vibrant but the photography challenging.

The Natchez Trace is an impossibly beautiful, possibly perfect road. In addition to lovely views around every bend, the roadway itself is very smooth, well maintained and made of a composition that generates little tire noise. The speed limit is 50mph, but I found that 45mph was a better speed for fully enjoying the experience. On top of everything, there was practically no traffic besides a few bikes, motorcycles and an occasional car.

As the morning wore on, the sky started filling with puffy little photogenic clouds. What a drive!

Early afternoon, I pulled off in the small rural town of Collinwood, TN, and found a typical little family diner for lunch. By the time I was done eating, the sky had filled with clouds and darkened with threat of rain. Rather than push on in less than ideal conditions, I inquired at the town's "welcome center" about the possibility of a place to stay. What follows is a story worthy of its own post... Stay tuned!

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