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Natchez Trace/Cypress Swamp Professional Review and Guide
"The Natchez Trace Parkway is the setting for a hike combining a there-and-back trek along the Natchez Trace National Scenic Trail with a short loop on an adjacent nature trail. First, take the Trace as it winds through hilly woods and fields, then retrace.You can choose to walk the Cypress Swamp Loop first or upon your return. I recommend it after hiking the Trace. The Trace access trail starts directly across the road from the parking area for the Cypress Swamp. Cross the road and walk just a short distance to access the Natchez Trace National Scenic Trail. You can go left or right—go right toward River Bend. Begin trekking northbound through mixed pine-oak woods on a narrow singletrack path marked with white blazes."
--Johnny Molloy, Hiking Mississippi (Falcon Guides).
The Cypress Swamp portion of the trail is short, perhaps a 10 min circle of the swamp. The trail here is well maintained and the forest views are enjoyable.
The remainder of the trail which parallels the road is less pleasing. First the trail is close enough to the road that you hear traffic during the entire hike. Second the trail is not well maintained, with downed trees and overgrown portions that take some effort to circumnavigate. The portion of the trail north of the bridge, just north of the water tower, disappears completely save the occasional blaze and ribbon on the trees. Luckily the woods are open enough, with the road beside you, that you won't get lost.
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