After days of really flat, really boring, riding / non-riding today was a welcome breath of fresh air. The Natchez trace is a really nice ride! Its a two lane road with a 50 mph speed limit and very few cars.
The trace dates back to prehistoric times when bison followed the same path from the river to the Nashville area. Later native Americans and others would “trace” the same path. Natchez is the oldest western settlement on the Mississippi river dating back to 1746.
Today Jane and I did the ride as a relay. She dropped me off and I rode for 28 miles, testing my lower back which seemed to survive the ride quite well. Meanwhile, Jane hiked a bit and then drove on ahead of me and parked the truck and camper so it would be waiting for me. Then she took off on her bike heading towards Natchez, a little more than 33 miles. I drove the camper to our camp site and got everything set up for the night.
The day did not start well as we had a nail in one of our camper tires so the pressure was way down, and my removal of said nail did not make the situation any better. We slowly made our way to a Vicksburg tire shop about 5 miles from our campground. The place was a pretty low budget place, with no big bays or fancy equipment, but where the most friendly guy helped us out! I went inside — no counter, no receptionist — and waited next to a guy remounting a tire on a rim. When our tech noticed me he asked how he could help and I told him of our trouble. He followed me out and had us pull the trailer a bit further forward. He grabbed a jack and a “bacon strip” patch kit and his compressor hose. Less than 10 minutes later he was done. The charges were a shockingly low $10.00! I only had a 20 dollar bill and he didn’t have any change so we agreed to call it good at $20 and we were on our way. I was so elated that we didn’t have to sit around for hours waiting to get something done that it seemed like a bargain!
The “bacon strip” kit is a larger version of what I use for my fat tire bike. So now we are wondering if we can buy our own larger version for the camper as well.
After getting showered at our campsite we both realized that we hadn’t had anything to eat since breakfast, so we headed into town to the Natchez Brewery for a beer and some very good pizza. I’m suspecting it will be an early night.