Monday, August 4, 2014
This is the day when the Trans-America Trail (TAT) drops down into Mississippi. And Mississippi, is the last state in the USA that Scott has not visited, so he gets to mark it off his Bucket List!
Crossing into Mississippi was uneventful. No signs, no real recognizable change in landscape, only a transition in paving technique on the tarmac. Shortly after crossing into Mississippi, we were back on the gravel and we did notice a change, clearcuts. Not unlike Oregon, Mississippi has some of its economy based on the timber industry. Consequently, Mississippi has clearcuts just like Oregon.
In Tennessee, the row crops were mostly corn, soybeans, and cotton. In Mississippi, we started to see sorghum relatively frequently.
Mississippi’s TAT roads also re-introduced us to sand. Sand is tricky. With sand you need speed and for most of us, it’s counter-intuitive to apply more throttle when the motorcycle’s front end starts swimming around in loose material. Then, you combine sandy conditions and water and you get Mississippi mud. Muddy conditions and larger vehicles mean ruts and ruts suck!
Again, teamwork pays off. At this point, Madelyn and Scott have had two slow-moving tipovers in relatively soft material, which leaves Kendrick as the last rider standing… on his own motorcycle. Just after we removed Madelyn’s GS from the rut, Kendrick volunteered to move it up to the graffiti bridge where our GSs were waiting. Madelyn let him take control of the bike and one second later, the GS was on its side again. We spent a couple of seconds arguing about whether or not this counted for Kendrick and we’re still not certain we have consensus ;>).
The TAT meandered west and south, still in the northern half of Mississippi, but through no where. Gravel, gravel, and more gravel. Apparently, we passed very near the home of the father of the TAT, Sam Correro, in Corinth, Mississippi. No sign of Sam, so he must have been busy with his regular life.
Did we mention the heat? All we can say is that it is hotter and more humid than our home in Oregon in the summertime!
Eventually we made it to Batesville for some much needed rest and showers. No doubt that we slept well.