Tag Archives: Arkansa

Day 463 of Life on the Road as a Family, Tom Sawyer RV Park, Arkansas

We drove from Jackson to the edge of the Mississippi river on the Arkansa side, once again excited to be near this huge, historic, thriving river.  This will be one of the few RV parks we’ll tout, and it’s got less amenities than many. But who cares about a pool or playground when you’ve got the river right out your front window?  Another traveller had told Dan about this park months ago, and Dan quickly made the reservation only to be called two weeks ago and told that they were going to be flooding, so we couldn’t come.  They were so nice about it, and we felt bad for them because we knew they’d be losing a lot of the springtime travelers returning home to the colder northern states.  We made other reservations, and figured, oh well, just another detour.

Then they called a few days ago and said the river was to crest the night before our arrival, and would we like to come anyway? Would we?!  We cancelled the other reservations and headed up the road.

IMG_6465 After driving up and over the HUGE berm to get to the campground, this was the second building we encountered in the campground. The first one was the office, which was on wheels.  This is a restroom facility, with the nicest laundry room we’ve seen on the trip located upstairs.  We were a little apprehensive driving over the berm with our home, not sure what we would find.  We knew the campground was still 2/3 closed.  I was instantly glad that we weren’t here in 2011!

IMG_6449Here’s our view of the Mississippi River for a week!  It’s at flood stage, 30.6′.  We found out later that this campground’s location is used by the weather reporting on NOAA  because of it’s prime location to Memphis  – which is just a speck to the right of the tree.   Dan and I brought our chairs out here to sit and watch the barge traffic go by – it’s the coolest thing EVER.  We were supposed to run errands today and do some homework and cook a big dinner and, and , and… and we spent the afternoon right here instead.

IMG_6475This was the first barge we saw, and we were so happy!  Everyone from the campground comes to the edge of the water to watch them pass and we speculate on what they are carrying, where they’ve been, and where they will unload.  A few of them have open storage so you can see the coal and rocks, but most were covered like this one.  Sometimes the captain honks, but we usually can’t even see a human being anywhere on it.  We saw the American Queen riverboat go by later in the week, and it was even more magical. We tried to get Nate to read Tom Sawyer before we got here, so he could see the romance and mystery and commerce of the Mississippi, but he couldn’t get into it. His loss.

I probably took 20 barge pictures today, so you’re lucky I didn’t post all of them.  Another perfect day on the road.  Almost makes up for the debacle week of New Orleans.  Almost.