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Sunday, May 12, 2019

Jackson and the Petrified Forest

Thunderstorms overnight did let water into the window, but towels kept it from running down the inside of the wall. As the sun rose at the Gator Ranch, it revealed pooling water in the parking lot. The waters of the bayou were creeping a little too close to us for comfort. A plus for self-contained campers, we left the parking lot without having to go outside to check for wandering alligators.

By 0800 we were headed north. At 1000 we were stopped in traffic on route 49. The storms had caused the water to rise high enough to derail a freight train and block the highway. State troopers sent us back the way we had come.

Finding an alternate route brought us to Hattiesburg, Mississippi where we also found a Home Depot. Stretching our legs, we bought a roll of two inch wide blue painter's tape hoping it will work to prevent any more water ingress.

After lunch we rolled in to Jackson, Mississippi. Looking for a place to park we noticed another Pleasure-Way, so pulled in to say hi. Enjoyed introductions and a short conversation with Ian Bays and Helen Smith by their Excel TD.

Jackson is the Capitol of Mississippi, so we walked around the government building complex.

The buildings weren't open on Sunday, but we did get up close and check out the detailed carvings on the State Capitol building.

Old wooden homes like this one are maintained in beautiful condition around downtown Jackson.

One of the few books we carry with us is "Off the Beaten Path" which has interesting places in every state. Tonight's recommendation was for the Mississippi Petrified Forest in Flora.

At $22 for full hookups or $12 for primitive camping it is reasonable and has a few seasonal units. I'm not sure why this old caboose is rusting away in the campground.

Staying in the campground, we received a $2 discount on admission to the Petrified Forest. Walking the nature trail, on a misty windless afternoon, we found ourselves under attack by mosquitoes.

Here's an example of the logs you will see. I found it difficult to pick them out from regular fallen trees because of the moss and fallen pine needles.

The nature trail ended back at the office in a mineral room that was more interesting than the trail, plus it was mosquito free.

If you have been to any of the petrified forests in the western US, you should probably not leave the beaten path to visit this attraction.




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