New Orleans to Little Rock
Little Rock, AR - Events of Wednesday, May 8 to Thursday, May 6, 2013
On Wednesday morning, we finished packing up the motor home, then we unhooked the utilities and headed to the dump station. After dumping our holding tanks, we hooked up the car and were on the road around 9:15 a.m. headed to Little Rock, AR with an overnight stop in Vicksburg, MS.
When we leave New Orleans, our route out of the city always takes us across the Mississippi River by way of the Huey P. Long Bridge, which is to the west of the bridge we take when we arrive in New Orleans. The Huey P. Long Bridge is a long, narrow bridge with what seemed to be a maze of ramps leading to and from the bridge. We can't remember for sure about our first stop in New Orleans in 2009, but the bridge has been undergoing renovation for at least the last three years since our second stop in 2010. The bridge is narrow enough to begin with, but the lanes have been narrowed even further for the construction. It's a bit of a white-knuckle experience to get across with a large vehicle like a motor home.
We're happy to report, although the construction seems to be never-ending, the improvements to the approach ramps are essentially complete and are a big improvement. It's not nearly as difficult to find your way to and from the bridge as it used to be.
Our drive to Vicksburg was supposed to be a little over 4 hours. To make a long story short, it turned out west-bound I-55 was completely closed just to the west of Jackson, MS due to an accident. All traffic was forced to exit west-bound I-20 to local roads to bypass the site of the accident. The heavy traffic and the detour added over an hour to our drive, and we finally pulled into the Ameristar Casino RV Park in Vicksburg about 2:30.
The Ameristar Casino RV Park has paved roads and pads. There is a small, poorly-placed, paved patio at each site (the patio was located by our back tire). There is well-manicured grass between the sites and a few small trees here and there.
The spacing of the sites isn't too bad, but the paved pads are a little narrow. The RV park has all full-hookup, pull-through sites. There are a few sites with 30/50-amp electric, but they cost an extra $7.50 a night, so we settled for a 30-amp site for $22.50. There is free Wi-Fi that was pretty fast and there is also free cable.
There is traffic noise from nearby I-20, and there is a railroad track down over the hill in back of the campground. You can't see the trains, but you sure can hear them. Fortunately, there weren't that many trains. It is also fortunate there are no crossings nearby, so there were no train horns; but there was a lot of rumble when the trains passed. All in all, however, the Ameristar Casino RV Park is not a bad place for an overnight stop or for a couple of nights to visit the casino and/or the Vicksburg National Military Park. We stayed at Ameristar back in 2010 to visit the military park and battlefield. Click here to read about our 2010 visit.
We were on the road by 9:15 again the next morning for a drive of a little over four hours to Maumelle Park in Little Rock, AR where we had a site reserved for a week. This time, we didn't run into any traffic delays, so we pulled into Maumelle around 1:30.
Maumelle is a Corps of Engineers Campground with paved roads and pads and large, gravel patios. There are water and electric hookups only. Maumelle Park has some 30/50-amp sites, but the sites we like along the Arkansas River that are good for satellite reception have only 30-amp electric.
As with most Corps of Engineers campgrounds, the sites at Maumelle Park are very large; and as with most Corps of Engineers campgrounds, they honor America the Beautiful passes for a 50% discount. A riverfront campsite for only $12 a night is a real deal even if it doesn't have full hookups and only has 30-amp electric.
We have a number of favorite eateries in Little Rock, and we're planning to hit several of them while we're here. We're also investigating some sightseeing possibilities, so stay tuned.