Tuesday, 3 June 2008
Port Gibson, MS to Natchez, MS
58.2 miles, 5h20m, 10.9 mph
Elapsed Time: 7h02m, Max speed: 37.6mph
Total Climbing: 1821ft, Max elevation: 405ft
Total mileage: 694.8
I wheeled my bike out of the Grand Gulf Inn at about 7am and rode a
quarter mile to the Sonic for a breakfast burrito. So now I know how to
operate the Sonic.
After breakfast I rode into town and then took a right on MS 552 and
headed toward Windsor Ruins--a nice little side trip. The ride out was
really hilly and really hot and really humid and really buggy. There
was also plenty of kudzu.
A canyon of kudzu.
After about 12 miles of up and down I finally reached Windsor Ruins.
Windsor was supposed to be the grandest of all the plantations around
these parts. It survived the Civil War and then burned in 1890. All
that remains are 23 columns. I took a lot of pictures, but I'll only
make you look at three.
The bugs drove me away after about ten minutes. The road got smoother
and less hilly as I turned south and then east. I passed the campus of
Alcorn State University and rode back over to the Trace on 552. The
road actually had a bike lane. That was not expected.
Back on the Trace. The road was nice and smooth, but much hillier than
I expected. I stopped only a couple of times for water and history.
This is Mt. Harmony, one of the few original structures from the olden
It cost 25 cents to sleep on the porch.
Token Parkway shot.
The last few miles of the Parkway were brand new, modern construction.
This means wide open spaces with no shade. I was pretty beat when I
reached the end. Yesterday I skipped lunch and had a small dinner from
Subway. Today I had a small breakfast and skipped lunch again. I think
I was bonking.
The last mile of the Parkway.
Finally, the end of the Trace. Well, actually the start.
I hit the first convenience store in Natchez and drank untold
quantities of fluids. Then I rode into Natchez. First there were a buch
of nice houses, then there was downtown, then I reached the river.
Looking down the Mississippi.
That's the bridge I'll cross tomorrow.
The boat in the foreground is the American Queen--a river cruise ship.
The boat in the background is a casino.
Looking back into town.
This is Rosalie, a plantation house in Natchez.
My next trick was to find the hotel. I
was staying at the Isle of Capri, which not coincidently is also the
name of the riverboat casino. So first I rode to the casino, which
involved riding down off the bluff to the river. No hotel. So I trudged
back up the hill in the 90 degree heat and rode toward the bridge.
There I found it.
After I showered I walked a half mile to a DQ and had lunch. Then I
took the shuttle down to the casino to get some money--from the ATM,
not the craps table. But while I was there I figured I'd throw some
dice, so I did that for an hour until I lost enough money, then I hit
the buffet. It was only about 4:30 but one thing I've learned is that
you have to take your food when and where you find it.
This place doesn't have wireless, so I'm going to try to upload from
the "business center" off the lobby. We'll see how it goes.
Tomorrow is going to be a very long day. I'm expecting about 90 miles
into a headwind with 90 degree temperatures. It will be awesome.
"NatchezTrace Tour 2008" Copyright © 2008 By
Clemons. All rights reserved.