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Old 11-15-2008, 04:34 PM   #1
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Interested in any comments about driving the Trace from North to South in early January.

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Old 11-15-2008, 04:34 PM   #2
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Natchez Trace

Interested in any comments about driving the Trace from North to South in early January.

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Old 11-15-2008, 06:38 PM   #3
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Have not traveled the entire route, only sections. Jackson, MS to Natchez and Nashville south for about 50 miles. Both times were during Spring when the Dogwoods were out. Northern portions have more hills and many overlooks. Lots of turnouts, parking and really pretty RV friendly. Most of the road is 2 lane, lots of curves with very little shoulder but leisure pace makes it a fun drive. I think the speed limit is either 45 or 50 mph. Only primitive camping (read tents) but many private and public campgrounds adjacent and not hard to find a suitable park.
By far the most interesting town was Natchez. More antebellum mansions than any other southern city. Many are open all year and about 50 (privately owned) open up for the Spring pilgrimage.
We want to do the entire route at some point. It is really an unknown slice of history. You wont be disappointed.
Dawn and Mark

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Old 11-16-2008, 02:59 AM   #4
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We took a quick trip down there last March but only drove the car on the Trace. From what I saw of the Trace I would not hesitate to drive the motorhome the entire length. As Mark says you will need to find your campgrounds in nearby towns. The one campground we saw on the Trace would not accommodate large coaches. We stayed at the 1000 Trails Preserve which is next to the Trace but the underpass to reach the campground was to low for us. We had to reach the campground from a county road. We hope to take the motorhome down the whole Trace someday.


<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Eaglesview:
Interested in any comments about driving the Trace from North to South in early January. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
Bob, Pam, and Wheatens Buffy and Bo
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Old 11-16-2008, 04:31 AM   #5
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We have traveled the Trace twice from Natchez to Nashville,both times in the spring....April...don't know how the weather is in January.There are at least 4 or 5 campgrounds on or near the Trace including a State Park at Toshamingo &lt;sp&gt; right on the Trace about a half hour from Red Bay (Tiffin M H factory and tours) that are easily accessible for 45 footers..we have used them...there are two no hookup campgrounds that are free also..but fill up fast...we have not used them though.
The speed limit is 45 to 50 and because there are no commercial vehicles allowed on the Trace it is the most leisurely and scenic drive you will have groomed like a park for 450 miles and no advertising signs at all are allowed.. very few cars and mostly RV's and sightseers very little traffic at all nobody is in a rush there.
Every historic stop off are RV freindly with full turn arounds (we are 41 feet and pull a toad)
OH.. and at 45-50mph I got 10.7 mpg for that stretch ..the best ever....bonus
Like I said you will want to check for winter conditions (maybe) in January as I don't know what winter is ...or isn't...in that region But the spring is a must drive highway for an RVer
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Old 11-16-2008, 01:08 PM   #6
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I love the Trace. Couple of good state parks around Tupelo also. Have reservations at Tombigbee SP next week. Take your time and enjoy the scenery. :-)
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Old 11-17-2008, 03:00 AM   #7
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My wife biked the Trace in 2003. This a link to my webpage about the trip:
Trace http://www.bgeisler.com/trails_page/nt.html

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Old 04-25-2009, 06:53 AM   #8
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We just drove the entire length of the Natchez Trace Parkway from Natchez, MS to Nashville, TN in our 40 foot class A pulling a Jeep Grand Cherokee toad. It was a very relaxing drive through the woods. The speed limit is 50 mph and road condition excellent. It is similar to the Blue Ridge Parkway (which we love in our car but are afraid to drive in our rig) but there are NO trucks, tunnels, switchbacks, ledges, or low bridges. There are frequent bike riders sharing the lane, but the lack of traffic made that not a problem. Sometimes we went for miles without passing another car. There are no fuel stops on the Parkway, but plenty of access roads to nearby towns. We wish that we had more than 3 days to spare and plan to come back.
We traveled the 3rd week in April and missed the Spring flowers in Natchez by a couple of weeks. We started seeing Dogwoods blooming north of Tupelo, MS and all the way to Nashville along with lots of roadside wildflowers, trillium and May apples on the walks. Lots of turkeys but no deer to worry about. Every few miles there is a turnoff with a short nature walk or historical site. They are easily accessed by large rigs, although parking space is limited. Not a problem for us - usually we had the whole site to ourselves for the 15-20 minutes we stayed at each site.
Camping: There are several free no-reservation campgrounds on the Parkway. We cruised one of them and it had some large pull-thru sites we could have used for dry camping. Riverview RV Park in Vidalia, LA is just across the bridge from Natchez (5 minutes from the historical district) and offers 50 amp pull thru sites with a view of the barges and paddle wheelers going up and down the river. Movietown RV Park near Canton, MS has 50 amp pull thru sites. We got on I-55 just north of Jackson, MS where it crosses the Parkway and went about 15 miles north to exit 119 for the campground. There is a Loves here with good diesel fuel prices and easy access back to the Parkway the next morning. Tishomingo State Park at milemarker 304 (ReserveAmerica) has some large back-ins with 50 amp service ringing a beautiful wooded lake. Dogwood in full bloom at our site. Hiking trails with swinging bridge, rock outcroppings, fern grottos, waterfalls, rock overhangs, river and streams, pool under construction, etc. We could have spent a week here.
Highlights: Natchez historical home tours and history. Don't miss eating lunch at Soul Heaven for great southern cooking and Pig Out Inn for BBQ. Riverboat has gambling casino if that appeals. Mount Locust mm15.5 has a restored stand and nice walk. Several sites let your walk or drive on the old Trace path. Cypress Swamp at mm 122 is beautiful and 2 little gators came up out of the water at our feet while we sat on the bench. At French Camp mm 180.7 there is a turnout with parking just north of the crossroads (don't get off the Parkway like we did). You walk over a little bridge to some old cabins where you are served lunch on the porch by pink-cheeked teens. Home baked bread, thick sandwiches, homemade soups and bread pudding. The adjacent Baptist Church carrillon seranades you with music at noon. Rock Spring at mm 330.2 has beaver dams, a springfed stream and lots of flowers. Meriwether Lewis gravesite is at mm 385.9. Lots of other short stops and hikes.
Low point: Elvis Presley Birthplace at Tupelo. They do NOT really have parking for big rigs! Go to the Parkway Visitor Center at mm 266 instead.
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Old 04-25-2009, 09:49 PM   #9
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Thanks for the info. DW & I want to make that same trip in the ball or maybe next spring.
Travel well, travel safe,
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Old 04-26-2009, 04:38 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Eaglesview View Post
Interested in any comments about driving the Trace from North to South in early January.
my dw and i did the trace on our motorcycle in the summer of 1990.
the highlights of our trip were natchez (the old homes) and corinth. there is a lot of civil war historical stuff around the corinth area. there is a very nice museum in corinth. there is a large battleground park just north of corinth in tennessee.
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Old 05-02-2009, 08:06 PM   #11
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We just arrived home today after 3 weeks on the road. Our trip was to do the Natchez Trace from Natchez to Nashville. While we throughly enjoyed the trip, the actual ride on the Trace was a little dissopointing. While the drive is restful and the traffic was almost non-existant, we saw very little wild flowers and NO wildlife. Do not know why they do not put wild flower seeds out like the road depts do. What we really enjoyed was the towns along the way. Natchez of course was supper. Beautiful town. We stayed at the State park there and the folks running it was as nice as any I have experienced in my camping days. If you go, go over the bridge to Vidlia and order the shimp Po'boy at Nics. WOW. What a treat. Get the foot long, its more than two can eat. We also stayed at the State park in Jackson. This park needs lots of TLC.

At Tupelo we stayed at the Trace State park. Jeff and Josh (park rangers) went overboard to help us out (no rsvs). This park is a 9 in my books(which is saying something for a state park) plus a wonderful and helpful staff. Try Jim's BBQ here. Well worth it. It's right by the greyhound bus station. Here we dicided we had seen enough of the trace and visited Memphis. Make sure you go by St Judes Hosp and view all the big old houses here. Corkys BBQ was only okay IMO. On the way back home we stayed at the State park in Alabama called "Chawa" (forgot the name already). Its outside Talladaga and is on the highest peak in Alabama. Real nice up on the mountain. We have seen enough of the Trace s/Toby

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