Running through DeSoto National Forest in both Stone and Harrison Counties, the 12 mile Tuxachanie Hiking Trail showcases some of Mississippi's finest natural beauty. With plenty of diversity in the scenery, as well as a relatively flat dirt path that features several picturesque wooden footbridges, this is a walk that will no doubt get Fido's tail wagging.
The Tuxachanie Hiking Trail has three access points. While each one has its own small parking area, only the trailhead at Airey Lake Recreation Area offers up drinking water and restrooms, so make sure that you bring plenty of water with you, for both yourself as well as Fido. Since the Airey Lake Recreation Area is almost halfway along the trail, this makes it easy to tackle this hike in two parts, rather than all at once.
The trail itself takes you through some diverse terrain, making for an interesting walk. There are both wet and dry habitats here, from creeks, ponds and swamps to pine woods and beech forests. If you and Fido want to see some spectacular wildflowers, this trail is pawfect for that, especially from mid-March onwards. You will see everything from various violets to wild azaleas to several orchid varieties here, giving you and your pooch such colorful, and sweet smelling, surroundings.
For those who enjoy a bit of history, a five mile section of the trail follows along an abandoned logging railroad track, which was built by Irish immigrants and dates back to the early 1900's. There is also a prisoner of war camp, known as the P.O.W. Lake Recreation Area, at the eastern end of the trail that you and your pooch can explore. The camp dates back to World War II, and used to house German prisoners, but is now home to a navy rifle range.
The Tuxachanie Hiking Trail is incredibly scenic, and will give you and Fido a whole new appreciation for what Mississippi has to offer.