Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Natchez Trace State Park

TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 2 (election day, finally!)
It was somewhat cloudy as we set out north on Hwy 2, which became Hwy 22 when we entered Tennessee.

We did visit Shiloh Military Park Visitor Center and watched a 32 minute video (made in 1956) on the battle of Shiloh. It just makes us very sad to think that almost 24,000 men died in those 2 days of fighting! We didn't walk or drive around the battlefield exhibits.

Driving north on 22, headed for Natchez Trace State Park, we missed a left turn in Lexington and found ourselves on 114 south, not north. When 114 took a right turn, I realized what we'd done. We stopped and asked a local how to get to the park. He directed us down a narrow, twisting, hilly road, a little over one lane wide.

After about 8 miles we stopped and asked again. A nice young woman said, "You're not lost. Just go 6 more miles and you'll be there." So we did and we were.

We got a nice room in the lodge, the one at
the upper right in this picture. In front of the Lodge is Pin Oak Lake. There are also "villas" and "rustic cabins" that you can rent here, but they don't have tv or phone. In the lobby of the Pin Oak Lodge, you can access the internet, thought we've had a few problems with staying on the net this morning.

We had a great buffet lunch here: salad, corn, beans, potatoes, beef and chicken, banana cream pie and soft ice cream for dessert.

This afternoon we went for a hike near the lake. The path here was covered with fallen leaves, but much easier to hike than the path in Arkansas, as it was not studded with hidden rocks. It was a pleasant hike through the woods. Saw several squirrels, but not much else.

When we got to the area shown in the next picture, we disturbed a great blue heron, who took off in a very dignified way. It's always a treat to see such creatures in their natural habitat!

The 1 1/2 mile trail led to a picnic area, and we decided to walk back to the lodge along the road, rather than just retrace our steps along the trail.

I was pretty sure we'd turned in the right direction, but it seemed so far to the lodge. We had taken the long way home, and the entire hike took us an hour and 20 minutes. But after several days with no amount of exercise to speak of, it felt really good to have a good long walk.

This day stayed cloudy throughout.

This morning we woke up to a general rain, so we're spending the day inside for now. Jim likes to work on the net in the morning anyway, and I'm quite happy to spend a morning knitting and watching HGTV. The second tuque was almost finished, but I didn't like it, so last night I raveled it back to the ribbing and am now knitting it up fatter and longer than the first version.

We'll have the lunch buffet again today, and then hopefully the rain will have diminished enough for us to go for a good long hike, if not through the woods, at least around the park on the roads. In the meantime, it's kind of nice to have a slow day.

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