Location: 2200 Old West Point Road Columbus, MS 39701 | April 1, 2017
For a while, I have been searching for secluded nature trails, where I would feel safe hiking alone. Every day on my way to work, I would pass a sign for Plymouth Bluff Environmental Center. One weekend Buck and I decided to check it out and it did not disappoint. The trails are about 20 minutes outside of town and follow the old Tombigbee River Channel.
WHAT TO BRING
We went in the spring so the weather was not terribly hot. The tall trees also provided a lot of shade while we were on the trails. I wore tennis shoes (or hiking boots), yoga pants and a tank. We brought a small backpack for our water bottle, phone, trail map, camera and some snacks. Next time I think we will make some sandwiches before hand and make more of a day out of the hike.
Plymouth Bluff offers a variety of different activities through the spring and summer but we wanted to explore the trails. There are 5 different trails that travel throughout the forest along the river. The trailheads start at different locations, so make sure to check out the map before you begin. Most of the trails are asphalt or crushed limestone, which is perfect because I am by no means an intense hiker…yet.
The five trails include Lake, Bluff, Old Channel, River, and River and Scouts Trail. We decided to tackle the Lake, Bluff and Old Channel Trails.
THE LAKE TRAIL
The Lake Trail was a great place to start, it’s a shorter trail that overlooks a small lake and leads into the Bluff Trail (0.65 miles). The trailhead starts right off the parking lot, close to where we parked.
THE BLUFF TRAIL
The Bluff Trail can be accessed from The Lake Trail and was by far one of our favorites (1.1 miles). The trail winds through the tall trees taking you closer to the 70 foot high Bluff, overlooking the Tombigbee River. We went during the spring so, the weather was cool and the forest was alive with new growth. Along the way, there were several benches, perfect to rest and snack on a sandwich or trail mix.
THE OLD CHANNEL TRAIL
The Old Channel Trail begins at the observation deck near the environmental building and follows close to the river (0.5 miles). The trail can also be accessed through The Bluff Trail, which is how we found it. We saw several rickety bridges and steps leading down to the sandstone shelf close to the water. We decided to test our luck and see where it led. We followed The Channel Trail for a little bit before turning back around. It was soggy and our shoes were sinking in mud. Part of this might have been caused by the heavy rainfall we received that week.
Again Plymouth Bluff Environmental Center offers a variety of different activities, we only checked out three of the five trails. We will definitely be coming back to explore more of what they have to offer.
RESTLESS ROOTS TRAVEL GUIDE