Six-Hour Day Trip To An Old Bridge In Carroll County Was FUN!
During this brief excursion, we went to an amateur topiary display, discovered an old bridge made of steel and wood, and ate at a catfish buffet, all of which were highlights of our time together.
You can’t tell a book by its cover, and you can’t tell a trip by the map.
There are times when a trip that doesn’t appear to have a lot of potentials can turn out to be an unforgettable road trip. This was one heck of a ride. We were able to take pictures on an old bridge and see the “Soggy Bottom” bridge during our trip. I love old bridges.
We didn’t leave until 4:pm. That doesn’t sound like a very promising day trip, and I had to remind myself that we don’t count miles; instead, we count smiles; however, this day trip turned out to be very enjoyable.
My friend is having a great time and taking some amazing pictures with her new camera. They range from nighttime settings and members of the family to nighttime vistas and flowers. If you have the right skills, you can make a good photograph out of almost any subject. I don’t consider myself a photographer; in fact, I wouldn’t even call myself an amateur; rather, I’m more of a four-thumb fumbler who owns a camera. But I also enjoy taking pictures, so I dusted off my old camera, went along for the ride, and took a few pictures just for the fun of it. The primary focus of this post will be a photo album containing oddball pictures that I’ve taken.
Because I was not driving, I had the opportunity to think and look around. Because this crowd prefers that I don’t think, and because thinking can on occasion lead to issues, I mostly just looked. The entire journey consisted of approximately 150 miles, and it took approximately six hours to complete due to the generous amount of time spent eating catfish. This post will focus primarily on images rather than words; I hope you enjoy the visual content!
We love eating Catfish at Carmack Fish House
We drove across the country to the Carmack Catfish House, which is located in Carmack, Mississippi, a town that may or may not be on your map. It’s possible that my map doesn’t show it either. Carmack is located approximately 3 miles south of Vaiden, Mississippi on Mississippi State Highway 35 at the intersection of County Road 3122. On the weekends, they offer a fantastic Fried Catfish Buffet for quite an affordable price. It comes with some of the best sides that can be found in southern cooking, such as fried okra, boiled corn on the cob, dill pickles, and french fries. The catfish will be fried for the main course, and you will have the option of eating either catfish tails, which are the portion of a large catfish that is located behind its head, or catfish steaks (cuts right through the catfish, bone and all). Tea is an additional dollar. Because there is no limit to the amount of food you can consume at this buffet, if you leave feeling hungry it is entirely your own fault.
Because there are a lot of people in this area who sell catfish, if yours isn’t good, no one will come back to buy it from you. Every weekend, this location is completely packed.
Following the meal, they used a piano-dolly to transport me from the restaurant to the waiting vehicle. We fastened our seatbelts and prepared to embark on the exciting journey along Mississippi State Highway 430, which was a secret that had been mysteriously revealed.
Enter Parts Unknown
Traveling north on Mississippi State Route 35, you will go under Interstate 55. Take the first paved road that’s on your left after the intersection. You are heading in a southerly direction onto State Highway 430, which winds through gentle clay hills that are lush with kudzu-covered trees, flowers, and fields of cotton and soybeans, and eventually reaches the delta in the vicinity of Greenwood, Mississippi.
You will reach County Road 144 after a distance of approximately ten miles (this is a country-boy estimate, which, when taken literally, means I have no idea how far it is). This road does not have pavement. As you depart from MS 430, it becomes more winding and descends a fairly steep hill.
You can now legitimately say that you are “in the woods.” You have, in point of fact, making your way into a section of the woods that is appropriately referred to as “Soggy Bottom.” Midway through the month of May finds us in this location, and wild blackberry bushes that line both sides of the road are loaded with unripe blackberries. After doing some hasty math with my fingers and toes, I came to the conclusion that I will not be in the area when these berries reach their peak maturity. Double-darn.
A creek known as Abiaca Creek is responsible for creating this swampy bottom area. The length of this creek is not very significant. My map shows that it begins about a mile upstream and flows through here before emptying into Sanders Lake a short distance (maybe a few hundred yards) downstream.
After leaving roadway 144, the creek follows a hollow to the east and slightly to the north as it makes its way up through the thick vegetation consisting of swamp grass and numerous water-loving trees. Beavers have dammed up the creek approximately 75 yards further upstream. The dam is located in close proximity to the road, and as a result, the waterfall that is produced as a result of the dam can be heard but not seen.
We came all the way over here because of the bridge. This bridge is quite elaborate for such a poorly constructed and infrequently traveled road. The awkward arch that stretches across the creek is formed by the superstructure, which is made of heavy bolted steel. It needs to be between 50 and 75 feet long so that it can cross the creek. This is an excellent bridge—old, it’s sturdy, and it’s surprisingly good. The roadway of the bridge is composed of what appear to be rough sawn oak planks approximately 4 by 10 inches in size. These planks are nailed with 6 inch nails onto 6 by 16 beams that have been laid out across the waterway. It appears that both the planks and the cross beam understructure were recently installed.
As you stand on the bridge, you can hear the calls of various birds mixed in with the sounds of frogs and other insects. Finding something like this is a moment that is exciting, beautiful, and peaceful all at the same time.
We took pictures while standing on the bridge, listened to the sounds, and voiced our thoughts aloud about the many things that come to mind in a setting and period of time such as this one. I came across a blue dragonfly and was able to get some good pictures of it, both far away and up close.
After leaving “Soggy Bottom,” we proceeded west on Mississippi State Highway 430. We arrived in Blackhawk, Mississippi, in just a few minutes. This historic neighborhood almost certainly does not even have its own postal code. However, there is a church, a few homes, and an intersection with Mississippi State Highway 17, which traverses this area from north to south.
Sometimes my mind works fine and gives me the false impression of still being young
When we arrived in Blackhawk, I suddenly recalled a location that was just west of “town” and that I had visited many years earlier. I mentioned to them that if we continued down this road just a little further, we would come across some topiaries. Nobody was aware of what a topiary was, and those who were asked stated that they had no interest in gaining any new knowledge at the moment. They made statements such as, “It’s the weekend, and you’re not supposed to put any mental effort into anything you do on the weekend.” I reassured the lovely group that I run with that this will not be something that will put too much of a strain on their brains… And in the end, they grudgingly agreed to give it a shot despite their reservations.
I am thankful for the artistic person who created the sight that greets your eyes and makes them smile. I do not know the family that lives here, nor do I know who is responsible for the artwork that lines the driveway of this home on MS 430; however, I am thankful for the person who created the artwork.
It would appear that the surname of the family is COX. At the very least, that is how the name is spelled out along the bank that leads up to the topiary display using perfectly arranged and pruned small shrubs.
A plant or tree that has been trained into an unusual form or shape through the use of pruning or trimming is known as a topiary. The artists who create topiaries are solely responsible for every aspect of the finished product, including its dimensions, form, and overall aesthetic appeal. If Mr. or Mrs. Cox were to put their work somewhere that was more visible to the general public, I have no doubt that it would receive a great deal more attention.
Never quit driving while the sun is still shining
Even though there was still daylight, we had the impression that if we went back to our house before it got dark, our kids would make fun of us and call us “old geezers” or something even worse. Therefore, we made the decision to drive a little bit further. After retracing our steps to Highway 17, we turned south and drove to Lexington, Mississippi. This is an old town that is on the verge of disintegrating completely. The Holmes County Courthouse is a magnificent structure that is crowned by an impressive clock tower. Although the road that circles the town square is spacious and well-lit, it appears that business is not doing particularly well there.
Sometimes, the best part of the trip is going back home
Nevertheless, we traveled through Lexington and made a turn east onto Mississippi State Highway 12, which led us directly back to the location where we had started our journey less than six hours earlier. Driving through Durant, Mississippi on the way to or from Lexington gives the impression that Lexington is a thriving metropolitan area. The following stop is Kosciusko, Mississippi, which is, to my amazement, a very prosperous town. The locals refer to it as Kozy. Kozy’s southeast city line is bisected by the Natchez Trace Parkway, which is a national scenic byway. A great number of people get off here in order to eat and shop in the downtown area. The Natchez Trace Festival is held in this town every May, and it is known for luring large crowds of people from all over the region. Attala County, Mississippi’s administrative center and the county seat are Kosciusko. Along the Highway 35 bypass, there are a number of motels, gas stations, and quick-service restaurants. There is a fantastic barbecue joint known as Frenchies located to the east of the intersection where Highways 12 and 35 meet. The Frenchie is more than worth the price you pay for it.