Friday, May 9, 2014
Went looking for fun and adventure within a two-hour drive of Mobile, Ala., so girlfriends can share a great outing. I took my husband, Jeff, on the trip as the navigator and he manned the GPS.
Within the large circle of two miles away from Mobile is Hattiesburg, Miss., but I wanted to try a different place. The dogs had to be included, and we packed a cooler then all piled into the car for a Sunday jaunt and walk on the Tuxachanie Nature Trail.
I had never heard of Beaumont Mississippi until I stopped at the service station to regroup and check the GPS.
After my trip to Ireland I am seriously wondering if there is an evil GPS spirit that loves to cause me angst and aggravation. After trying to force the stupid thing to give us a route that didn't include going into Hattiesburg, I decided to use my Smart Phone and pull up the map and our location. I found the road we were looking for on the phone's map. We drove seven miles back toward Mobile to F S 303; a country road through the DeSoto National Forrest.
After five miles down F S 303 a small sign (not much larger than a sheet of legal paper) caught my attention because the largest word was "WARNING!" In the area where bullet holes pitted the sign was barely legible - "TANK CROSSING."
"What kind of tank crosses a road?" I asked Jeff.
"The kind that goes boom boom and blows things up. See look." He said that as he pointed to a row of makeshift buildings in all conditions from being newly built to totally blown to smithereens.
"Where the heck are we that we would encounter tanks?"
"I don't know,but we might aught to get out of here."
A couple of miles further we saw another sign that warned we were in the practice bombing area for the Mississippi Air National Guard.
"Great,now they can take aim from their tanks and from the air." It reminded me of the day I got the call from the Secret Service and heard a small aircraft flying over my house. I seriously searched the skies for a drone that day.
We came to the end of the road and could go left or right. The sign on the corner showed an arrow pointed back toward the direction we had just driven that notified us of the Camp Shelby practice area. We turned left because we knew if we headed south we would eventually find the Gulf of Mexico. Glad to be out of there, we drove across the road and went to a dirt road to let the dogs out for a few minutes.
There were purple sweet smelling flowers along the road and some Black Eyed Susans.
BOOOOM - it was so loud I looked for a tank or plane. Jeff said he heard the jet. Neither of us needed to call the dogs back to the car as they ran and jumped in the back seat.
Now, unless you are interested in a game of dodge the bomb - this is not a trip I recommend driving to according to the Garmin GPS direction.
As we quickly got away from potential death by bombs, we discovered that the road we turned onto ended at Hwy 49 which goes north and south with Gulfport at the southern end. We also saw the entrance to the Tuxachanie Trail on Hwy 49, which is where we were headed to begin with.
Two things we explored where a group or a family with pups could have some fun.
1 Black Creek Campground, a great location deep in the forest with picnic tables, sandy beaches where the artesian colored water was cold, fresh and gently running past. The dogs ran wild and crazy with giant smiles while we ate our lunch.
2 Red Wolf Wilderness Adventures for canoes or kayaks to cruise Black Creek or the Tuxachanie River.
There are other adventure companies in the area but the closest was Red Wolf. Here is some information about the adventures in Mississippi. I highly recommend taking I-10 to Hwy 49 in Gulfport to get to any of these locations, and avoid the bombs.
Black Creek Trails -
Tuxachanie Trail -
Red Wolf Wilderness Adventures -
Posted by Name: Cece at 1:07 PM