Southern States Tour – Day 48

Day 48 Route
Day 48 Route

Thunderstorms dominated the afternoon, but the morning was very nice. Temperatures were as high as 88.

Day’s distance: 231 miles
Total trip distance: 8,614 miles

I detoured to Tupelo, Mississippi today to ride part of the Natchez Trace Parkway into Vicksburg tomorrow. My route took me around Birmingham to the south on I-495 and then west to Tuscaloosa.

I ate lunch at a hole in the wall taqueria in Tuscaloosa. Sometimes you get lucky and find little family-run places that are super good. Well, this was not one of those times 🙁 Anyway, back on the road, I was looking forward to the next section of the day’s trip.

Hwy 69 north from Tuscaloosa seemed popular with local riders. It’s a non-technical, two-lane highway with good surfaces that has some sweepers and small hills, with some nice scenery.

Hwy 69 at Tierce Creek, AL
Hwy 69 north of Tierce Creek, AL

Oakman, Alabama was the last town I passed on Hwy 69.

Entering Oakman, AL
Entering Oakman, AL

I would likely not have remembered Oakman, which seemed to be typical of the small rural town but they had a huge, beautiful, and apparently very well maintained High School. I didn’t stop to take a photo with the good camera, but I did get a photo from the GoPro.

Oakman High School
Oakman High School

I finished high school is a small-ish town in Central Pennsylvania. Though this school building seemed more ornate, with columns built into the architecture, seeing it took me back to my high school days.

Back on a larger and busier highway, Hwy 78, the rain clouds began to gather for the predictable afternoon thunder showers. I did duck into a rest area to wait out the worst of it. This image on my RadarScope app …


corresponds to this type of rainfall …

Screen Shot 2015-05-31 at 7.37.37 AM

I arrived at my motel in Tupelo and later, after another rain shower passed through, went to a local BBQ restaurant for ribs, and fried green tomatoes. I met two bikers from Louisiana who were on a week-long adventure and we talked until the sun set.

Sunset in Tupelo, MS
Sunset in Tupelo, MS

I am looking forward to riding the Natchez Trace Parkway tomorrow and stopping at my friends’ place in Vicksburg.

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