Helena Outpost - Multi-Day into Helena
2 canoeists on the Lower Mississippi
First-time paddlers on the Mississippi are often overwhelmed by the giant perspectives of the floodplain landscape, the long forested islands, the immense sandbars like ocean beaches, and the powerful mile-wide river that seems to disappear around the next bend. The river hides her secrets. It is difficult to understand just how deep the main channel is, how wide the floodplain, and the incredible diversity & strength of the biology. It’s deceiving. As you paddle along you don’t see anything but water & sky and long thin lines of forest in between. No visible remains of steamboats, Indian villages, plantations, frontier landings are found anywhere – all history is buried under layers of mud & sand.
Enter three fantastic places that tell the rest of the story: 1) Mud Island Park
(Memphis), (2) Tunica River Park Museum
, (3) Delta Cultural Center
in Helena all provide interpretive exhibits, maps, photos, artwork and artifacts that “signify” the river, helping paddlers better understand the unique nature & scale of the Lower Mississippi. Amazingly all three are located near good river landings approximately within a days’ paddle of each other. What a great paddling opportunity! Spend a few hours at the Tunica River Park Museum, load your canoe and make a 2-day trip downstream to the Delta Cultural Center, which literally sits behind the floodwall in downtown Helena. You could pull your canoe up on banks of the Helena Harbor and be at the front door of Delta the Cultural Center in 30 seconds. Or make it an all-inclusive trip: a 3-day journey beginning Day 1 at Memphis’ Mud Island Park; overnight along the Tenessee/Mississippi line, visit the Tunica museum Day 2 and continue on to Helena and its Delta Cultural Center Day 3. Wow! This is truly an opportunity for a mixture of “real” & “interpretive” river experience – applicable to anyone on the river who wants to understand it better – for couples, families, church groups, boy scout or girl scout troops, outdoor enthusiasts, paddling aficionados, adventurers, historians, geographers, birders, biologists, archeologists, paleontologists, and any other heritage or eco-tourists! This kind of experience is most certainly un-equaled anywhere else on the Lower Mississippi!
Tunica River Park – Helena - 37 miles
Mud Island Memphis – Helena - 74 miles