I recently told you about our newest acquisition, a 7-Up 25th Anniversary Mustang. Although it is a low mileage survivor we intend on driving it on special occasions. This past weekend our Music City Mustang Club organized a cruise down the Natchez Trace Parkway, a National Park that starts/finishes in Tennessee and finishes/starts in Louisana while passing through Alabama and Mississippi covering 444 miles. Obviously, we did not run the entire length but we did cover approximately 250 miles round trip with the top down.
It was the perfect day for a Fall trip. There were a total of 37 Mustangs ranging in age from 1965 right up to the most modern versions. There were Shelbys and Saleens to add extra spice. Several rest stops provided time for photos, sightseeing, and casual conversations. Obviously, the sight and sound of all those Mustangs cruising down the two lane winding road provided a tranquil yet exciting trip. We enjoy touring back roads with friends more than just about any other part of the car experience. The people we meet at such events rank right up there with the actual fun of driving the back roads.
As for the Natchez Trace Parkway, it is not what you think of when thinking about National Parks. It is not as much of a destination as it is a trip. Sure, there are things to see and do along the route but the road is the main draw for us. In Tennessee it is a very curvy road running through the gentle mountains and hills. There are historical attractions but generally, they are not visible from the road. There are no gas stations or restaurants or other amenities/distractions along the Parkway itself, you must exit to the real world to partake of these necessities. A sharp eye must also be kept for bicyclists who often can be found on the Parkway.
This is not a route to take to save time or daydream. The sharp curves and scenery encourage slower speeds. You will quickly find yourself and your passengers watching for wildlife and outstanding natural views. Civil War buffs and others who study history will marvel at the obstacles and ever changing landscape that must have been a significant challenge prior to the construction of roads and bridges.