Category Archives: Louisiana

Exploring The Natchez Trace Parkway

April 25, 2014 – Friday

We wake up to sunny skies. It rained hard last night.

We didn’t realize just how close the Trace was to the visitor center, just a few minutes up the road. Before getting on it, we gas up and I see hot peanuts for sale at the gas station, so I get a small bag for Bill and a coffee for me while he fills up the gas tank. We aren’t sure how many gas stations will be along the Trace so we keep it topped off when possible.

The Natchez Trace Parkway for those that don’t know is 444 miles going through three states and 10,000 years of history. It is a designated National Scenic Byway and an All-American Road. It starts south in Natchez, LA at mile post 1, but we didn’t get on it till Clinton, MS at milepost 90.

Our first stop is mile post 100 at the Mississippi Craft Center, a state of the art facility in the trees along the Trace. The center displays the artwork of more than 150 artisans. There are crafts like baskets, pottery, quilts, wood carvings, jewelry, paintings, folk art and sculptures. The center was designed for the display, sale, demonstration, and teaching of fine crafts.

They allow us to bring the dog stroller in and comment that they are better behaved than most kids. We look around and take photos.
















Mississippi Craft Center

Next we pass the Ross R Barnett Reservoir which runs along the Trace for about eight miles.


Next stop is the Cypress Swamp at mile marker 122. We leave the dogs in the RV and walk down the stairs to the bridge over the swamp.













Bill goes back to the RV and I walk the short 20 minute loop trail around the swamp.

Back on the Trace, we head for the Kosciusko Visitor Center, mile post 160. Did you know that Oprah Winfrey was born in Kosciusko? She lived here till she was three years old. The visitor center didn’t have anything but one painting of her. They said we would have to exit the Trace and drive a few miles away to see the church she attended and a street sign named after her. We decided to skip it and took a few pictures in the very small visitor center.





It’s hard to believe Oprah came from here. The visitor center was disappointing, only having a map of the Trace and dead stuffed animals.

We stopped at Jeff Busby park, mile post 193, for lunch in the RV surrounded by trees. It was too early to stop for the night, so we continued up the Trace. We checked out Davis Lake, mile post 243, but they were full. I called Trace State Park at mile post 260 and they were full too. By this time I’m getting tired and I go to my trusty Overnight RV Parking website and look for a place to stay. Good old Walmart is just off the Trace in Tupelo mile post 260, so we head there. We went in to get permission, more food and Bill got a haircut. Walmart to the rescue again!


Overnight RV Parking


Free Private “Campsite” in Mississippi

April 24, 2014 – Thursday

We left New Orleans French Quarter RV Resort at 9:15 am, going west on I-10 then north on the 55. Our first tourist stop today is the Country Market in Ponchatoula, LA. It’s a historical train depot with a few restored cars, an alligator in a wire mesh pen, and the depot sells crafts made by local people.




The Ponchatoula Country Market

We continued north on 55 and entered Mississippi. Then west on 20 to the Clinton Visitor Center where we will get on the Natchez Trace Parkway. I like visitor centers, and this is one of the nicest I’ve seen. It even has a dog walk area and is situated in a beautiful landscaped park like area. We walk the dogs then go inside the center.






The two volunteer ladies are very nice and give us maps and brochures on the Natchez Trace Parkway. I ask if we can spend the night in their parking lot and they say yes. They even call the local police to let them know we have permission. We walk around taking photos of the place and they come out to pet the dogs. They are proud of the center and rightly so. It costs $2 million to construct it. It resembles an 1800’s farmhouse. It has three porches, all with rocking chairs. There is a “Fallen Comrade” statue in the garden. The center opened in 2005.








The volunteers leave at 5:00 pm and we are alone in our own beautiful free campsite for the night.

New Orleans Day 2 – Final Pictures!

April 23, 2014 –  Wednesday (continued)

Bill’s ankle has been giving him problems again. We pass a foot massage place where the lady and I talk Bill into having a 20 minute foot massage. The dogs and I wait around and visit a few other stores. We make our way back to the RV, rest up, then just Bill and I go back to Bourbon St at 6:30 without the dogs. They stay in the RV this time.


My strawberry booze to go cup

My strawberry booze to go cup

Street band

Street band


Skyline lights we see from our RV resort

Skyline lights we see from our RV resort

Good night New Orleans

Good night New Orleans

So that’s all the photos of our New Orleans trip. We leave here in the morning.  I think Bill enjoyed his first time in New Orleans. I know the dogs and I had a good time.

New Orleans Visit 2nd Day – Part 2

We continue our walk on Decatur St towards the Farmers Market and Flea Market. imageimageimageimageimageimageimageimageimage

Sign in Farmers Market and Flea Market says no bikes, skates, smoking or dogs. The dogs were part of the attraction in there to the tourist. Nobody told us to leave. I think the sign is to prevent dogs walking on a leash, not stroller dogs! 🙂

more photos in next post

New Orleans Visit 2nd Day

I had reserved our site for only one night originally. I used Passport America to get it at half price, which was $49.44. They only offered the discount for one night, so I planned on going to another resort in New Orleans that also had a half price deal. Bill really liked this resort, and suggested we just stay here instead of moving, so we paid almost full price, but with a 10% Good Sam discount which still came to $88.99. The most I’ve ever spent for a resort.

Today I wanted to check out more places we hadn’t gone to yet. Got the dogs in the stroller and put their beads on them again. Left the resort at 9 am looking for adventure.

Dogs wearing Mardi Gras beads

Dogs wearing Mardi Gras beads


As we are walking to Bourbon Street a man wearing a Vietnam Nam Veteran  hat strikes up a conversation with Bill. Turns out they are also staying at the RV resort and our from northern CA.

Bill and another Veteran

Bill and another Veteran


Alligator heads

Alligator heads


Continued on next post

New Orleans – Part 4

April 22, 2014  –  Tuesday (continued)

The tour was good, but it didn’t really cover Bourbon Street, and I want to show it to Bill, who has never been to New Orleans. It takes us, walking slow, fifteen minutes from the RV resort to get to Bourbon Street where all the action and crazies are. Since it’s a Tues and still daytime at 6 pm, I’m not sure what to expect.


Kids in stroller petting the dogs

Kids in stroller petting the dogs


People throwing beads from the balcony

People throwing beads from the balcony

Stroller dogs wearing Mardi Gras beads

Stroller dogs wearing Mardi Gras beads

Drunk sleeping it off

Drunk sleeping it off

Visitor center near RV park

Visitor center near RV park

The dogs sure did get a lot of attention on Bourbon St, and they had a lot of competition! It was fun taking them. People are always asking if they can take pictures of the dogs and stroller. The dogs were great, I didn’t even zip them in the stroller, so people could photograph them better.

We got back to the RV at 7:15. I worked on deleting and cropping photos till 11 pm, walked the dogs again to potty and called it a night.


New Orleans – Part 3

April, 22, 2014  – Tuesday (continued)

This is the Sculpture Garden, a pretty green park with lots of oak trees with moss hanging in them, a lake and lots of big sculptures. We didn’t get a chance to see them all, as we had to get back to our tour.

imageimageimageimageimageBack in the tour van we continue to see New Orleans.

Sandra Bullock's house

Sandra Bullock’s house



The tour lasted about three hours. The dogs were happy to see us when we got back. I took them for a walk around the resort to get out and do their thing. Bill and I had lunch then we got the stroller out, so we could walk around the famous French Quarter with them.

See New Orleans –  Part 4 for the pictures