Monte Sano State Park sits on a high Plateau above Huntsville, Alabama. It is a lovely campground with nicely spaced campsites and numerous hiking trails. The internal one way roads are asphalt. Most sites are back-ins. Only 9 have full hook-ups, and these are first come first served. Reservations can be made for a campsite in general with water/electric service (30 and 50 amp). Once you arrive you pick a specific site and can switch to a full hook-up site if one is available. Primitive sites are also available with no hook-ups. Security is excellent with a coded entry gate. If you arrive after 5pm, you can check in with the camp hosts in the first RV past the security gate. A camp store is available with some basic necessities for sale. On the back side of this building are clean laundry facilities with 4 washer and 4 dryers. This is a popular campground and is very full on week-ends. Be sure you approach the campground from the right direction. A GPS will likely bring you by way of Washington Street to Pratt Avenue onto a steep winding road with 30’ length restrictions. We made it only because God answered prayers and protected us when we had to swing into the other traffic lane. Moments after we got back into our own lane, a delivery truck came barreling around the next curve coming too fast to have stopped. . The correct approach is from Highway 431 onto Monte Sano Blvd. This is still a steep winding approach, but the turns are not nearly as sharp and are manageable. Plenty of shopping is within a 5-6 mile driving distance. One of the main near-by attractions is the US Space & Rocket Center.
JP Coleman State Park is located in the far northeast corner of Mississippi on Lake Pickwick. It is a lovely park that is narrow, but long beside the shores of the lake. Private homes sit right next to the park boundaries, but do not detract from its natural beauty. It is about 20 minutes north of Luka, MS, and 35 to 45 minutes south of the Shiloh Battlefield National Park, which was the reason we stopped at this campground. Full hook-ups are available including both 30 and 50 amp service. The internal roads are asphalt and the pads are cement. The roads are a bit narrow and go up and down the rolling hills of the park. We maneuvered in ok with a 40’ motorhome pulling our car. However we barely made it out due to some narrow sharp turns. Next time I will wait until we reach the exit area before I hook up the tow car. Our pad (39) was right beside the lake and was long enough for the motorhome with parking beside the pad for the car. Some of the sites would have been too short. Some next to the lake are close together. This would be a great destination park for fishermen. There was a boat ramp in the campground and several camper’s boats were tied up along the bank. A fish cleaning station was located near the boat ramp. Laundry facilities were available at the campground, a real convenience for fulltimers. There were 2 washers and 2 dryers. The office only had a few available in change. We would definitely camp here again and wish we had more time to stay on our first visit.
Meeman-Shelby SP is located about 30 minutes north of Memphis, and a 15 to 20 minute drive from Millington, the nearest town with groceries, etc. The staff were very friendly and helpful. It is a lovely park located in a bottom land, hardwood forest. Just enough trees have been removed to build the campground entrance road and pads. The internal roads are asphalt and are a bit narrow. Sites have water and electric (50 and 30 amp), but no sewer hook-ups. The bath house was cleaned daily but is quite old, and in need of some upgrades. One of the men’s showers was in need of immediate repair. We camped in a 40’ motorhome, but had a challenge finding a pad long enough. We found one to park the coach, but there was no room for the car. Fortunately there were few campers there at the time, and we parked the car on an adjacent campsite. There was a nice playground area that looked fairly new. There are several nice hiking trails. However beware of the poison ivy. I have never seen so much right along the trails, and in some cases right beside the campground pads.
The Outdoor Living Center RV Park is located just off I-40 in Russellville, Arkansas. Pros: It is very close to the Interstate for a one night stop over. The staff were friendly and helpful. The sites are pull-throughs and easy to maneuver into. Laundry facilities are available although we did not inspect them. We highly recommend the associated Outdoor Living Center RV Dealership, located a mile or so away on the other side of the Interstate. We were very pleased with their service on our Newmar Dutch Star. Cons: A busy highway passes in front and the Interstate is close by. Thus there is a fair amount of traffic noise. The sites are gravel and very close together. The water connections are below ground in a water meter type box. There was a heavy rain the night we stayed. The next morning it was obvious the water box had flooded since my hose connection and pressure regulator were covered in a thin muddy film
Petit Jean was the first state park established in Arkansas. It was built by the Civilian Conservation Corp from 1932 to 1941 and is perhaps the nicest state park I have ever visited. It is a destination park where you could easily enjoy a week or more exploring the park, fishing and just relaxing. It is anywhere from 30 to 45 minutes from I-40. The drive into the park from either the west or east is lovely but on somewhat winding roads. The last 3 miles from the west and the last mile from the east wind up to the top of the plateau where the park is located. There are a series of sharp switchbacks but sufficient room to maneuver a large motorhome pulling a tow vehicle. Just keep your eyes on the road and not the wonderful views off in the distance. We had a huge campsite with full hook ups which is a bit unusual for a state park. Most do not have sewer hook-ups. We were in Area A, the newest section. The other Areas do not have sewer hook-ups but otherwise look nice. Within Area A, I consider sites 13 through 22 to have the nicest views, with 23 through 31 being my 2nd favorites and 1 through 12 being my 3rd choice. Sites 15,17, 18, 19 and 20 have the best views of Bailey Lake and would be my 1st choice if available. Most sites in Area A are pull-throughs and are very spacious. The only complaint would be the low water pressure/volume. Also there are no laundry facilities. The nearest are in Morrilton or Russellville. All internal roads are asphalt. There are numerous trails to explore. Be sure to drive to the various overlooks. The views are spectacular. There is a nice restaurant at the lodge. Be sure to stop by the lodge to see the views from there as well.
Tar Camp COE (Corps of Engineers) campground is a lovely site on the Arkansas River between Little Rock and Pine Bluff, Arkansas. It is about 5 or 6 miles from Interstate 530 at the Redfield exit. The sites in the newest section (Section D) are very large and include a covered picnic table. The only complaint is the very fine stone used to pave around the campsite. It really sticks to your shoes and tracks into the RV. The pads are concrete back-ins. Water and both 30 and 50 amp service are available. Sewer hook-ups are not available, and the dump station pull through is very tight for large motorhomes. I elected not to try it. Also pay attention to the trees on some sites. We had to move to a different site due to low overhanging limbs on our original site. We enjoyed a great hamburger at the Mammoth Orange Café in nearby Redfield and found a good coin laundry which is on River Road on the way to the campground.
Riverview RV Park is one of our favorite parks. It sits right on the Mississippi River across from Natchez, Mississippi. You can see tow boats pushing barges up and down the river from your RV. The campground sits about 1 mile south of the Mississippi River bridge that crosses over to Natchez. The city of Vidalia has built a lovely park along the river that stretches from the bridge down to the campground. This is a wonderful place for a walk along the river. Our dog especially enjoyed walking there. Most of the campground sites are on level concrete pads. All have 30 or 50 amp service. The sites south of the office have cable hook ups although there is a very limited selection of channels. Free Wi-fi is available in the office and can be picked up by a few sites closest to the office. The interior roads are slate gravel which can produce gray dust when the area is dry. The office has a very clean but small laundry with 3 oversize washers (2 @ $2.50/load and 1 at $3.50). There are 4 dryers @ 7-8 minutes per quarter. The individual bathrooms with showers are very clean. The staff is outstanding - very friendly and helpful. By all means tour some of the antebellum homes in Natchez such as Rosalie, Melrose and especially Longwood. We enjoyed attending the Vidalia Presbyterian Church. The folks in this small historic church were very warm and friendly. Ask about the story of its being moved in 1930. Dr Gregg and the staff at Gregg Veterinary service were wonderful in caring for our pet while in Vidalia. Likewise Dr Gregg and the staff at Gregg Dentistry (The two Dr Gregg’s are brothers.) were wonderful when I had a dental emergency. We enjoyed pizza and other food from Sonny’s Pizza, the hamburgers from Jerry’s, country food and friendly service at Nikki’s, the BBQ at the Pig Out Inn and an excellent dinner at the Pearl Street Pasta .