Wednesday, September 7, 2011

To Lawrenceburg Tennessee

After 4 days of rest, it felt really good to get on the bike and ride. I left from the motel and rode NW through Franklin toward Nashville.
It was 12 miles before I reached the turn-off to the
The double-arch bridge of the Trace which crosses SR-96.
The Natchez Trace is a 444-mile long National Parks Scenic Parkway. Historically it was probably a series of hunter's paths which came to form a trail from the Mississippi River over the low hills into the valley of the Tennessee River. By 1785, traffic along the trail had increased considerably as farmers began to float their crops and products down the rivers to Natchez or New Orleans. Because they sold their flatboats for lumber, returning home meant walking and they tramped the crude trail into a clearly marked path.  When steamboats on the rivers made travel northward faster, safer, and easier in the 1820s, the path became a peaceful forest lane.
Today the Trace is a wonderful road to bicycle.  There are no shoulders, but the speed limit is low and there is very little traffic.  There are no stop signs or lights the entire way, entrances and exits are far apart.  On my first day, I saw many flocks of wild turkeys and many deer.
This was the signpost where I started:
After riding 12 miles, I came to this signpost which baffled me.  I was 31 miles farther away from Nashville, but only 2 miles closer to Tupelo. 
The Old Trace:

Water Valley Overlook:

Dick rode to the exit to US-64 where we drove to Lawrenceburg, the Birthplace of Southern Gospel Music (as designated by the US Congress).  David Crockett State Park is very close to town.  Dick and I both remember, as children growing up in the 1950s, loving the television show about Davy Crockett - the "king of the wild frontier."  I had a coonskin cap and Dick had a Davy Crockett lunch pail.
The weather today was perfect for me especially. It was in the 60s when I started out and maybe got into the low 70s for a high. No whining about the heat today.

Miles = 2911

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