Step Outside - Mississippi WELCOME TO STEP OUTSIDE! Find the best outdoor fun near you! en-us 30 Step Outside - Mississippi 144 144 Tue, 17 Jul 2018 23:54:10 -0500 5 Exhilarating Jet Skiing Spots in Mississippi If you love being near the water, chances are you'll enjoy riding on a jet ski. Jet skis, also known as personal water crafts (PWC) or water scooters, skim across the surface of the water and are driven like a motorcycle. With such an abundance of ocean, lakes, rivers, and streams across our state, it was hard to narrow down—but we've rounded up our picks for the five of the most thrilling jet skiing spots in the state. Ride safely!

What better place to enjoy your personal watercraft than out in the open Gulf of Mexico? Whether you take a boat out to the barrier islands or you stay close to shore, you'll have no shortage of space to cruise through the waves.

Eagle Lake is an oxbow (or U-shaped) lake which sits at the border between Louisiana and Mississippi near Vicksburg. This lake was originally part of the Mississippi River, and although it's primarily popular for bass fishing, the shape of the lake makes it a popular spot for watercraft as well. There's even a public boat ramp for your convenience!

Grasshopper Island is a tiny piece of land where the Biloxi and Tchoutacabouffa Rivers meet Biloxi's Back Bay. The island is only accessible by boat, making it a popular destination for anyone who enjoys hanging out on the river. This is a great spot to anchor the boat and cruise around on your jet ski!

Barnett Reservoir is a popular destination for anyone in central Mississippi who likes spending time on the water. With five marinas located on "The Rez,” you'll easily find a space all to yourself to really get your jet ski going!

Tunica Cutoff is another oxbow lake, this time in the far northwestern corner of the state. Although this lake borders both Arkansas and Mississippi, you can only access it from the Mississippi side. This lake is narrow, but with 2,500 acres, there's plenty of room for jet ski enthusiasts!

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Best Outdoor Festivals in Mississippi Mississippi is a hot spot for outdoor enthusiasts of all types, especially when festival season abounds. The state hosts several fests and events each year dedicated to all the best parts of the outdoor lifestyle. They’re fun, inexpensive ways to delight every member of the family, and perfect for meeting others that share your passion for the outside world. These epic outdoor festivals and events deserve a spot on your social calendar. 

Come celebrate at one of the largest birding festivals in the Southeast. This fun festival offers guided nature walks, guest speakers, live animal shows, kids activities, and an up-close look at the beautiful Ruby-throated hummingbirds being banded and released. It’s a full weekend of nature fun, and you won’t see this many hummingbirds anywhere else in the state.

Enjoy Mother Nature from an entirely different perspective with this massive hot air balloon event. Colorful balloons of all sizes and shapes lift off in a stunning patchwork of art. You might even get to catch a ride on one and view the town as you’ve never seen it before. Also included in the festival are live bands, kiddie carnival, local artists, and more.

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You won’t want to miss this festival if you’re captivated by hot air balloons or picturesque nights. People of all ages gather at this festival full of hot air balloon races, family flights, balloon glows, fireworks, children’s activities, food vendors, and live music.  The festival goes on for three days and involves a Balloon Chase Run Walk. The City of Canton, the City of Ridgeland, Mid-Mississippi Balloon Association, and the Good Samaritan Center  bring you this spectacular event.

This festival centers itself around music and rodeo. Experience a musical lineup that truly speaks to the heart of Mississippi with acts like John King, the Coates Brothers Band, and the Double J Band. Nothing is better than getting food and beverage from one of the many vendors, checking out the exotic animal exhibits, and watching rodeo.

The biggest nature festival of its kind in the state, NatureFEST will be back in Spring 2019 just as big as ever. This festival highlights some of the best things in nature, from museum tours to group outings. This past year, visitors were able to enjoy an exotic animal show, guided and self-guided hikes, a tour of the museum’s plant garden, picnics, and games. Artists and food vendors are always on site to make your experience even better. Dates for next year’s NatureFEST have not yet been released, but you can stay tuned to the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks website for more details.

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5 Best Fishing Holes in Mississippi In Mississippi, veteran anglers and inexperienced fishermen and women alike will find no shortage of incredible fishing holes to discover. From lakes covering over 1,000 acres to magnificent reservoirs, you’ll be catching crappie, bass, and catfish in no time. The Mississippi's Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks (MDWFP) estimates that there are more than a quarter of a million acres of freshwater fishing in the state. Here are the best fishing holes in Mississippi. 

Grenada Lake was created by the Army Corps of Engineers as a flood control lake on the Yalobusha River. The area is known as a particularly good spot to find crappie, but anglers also find bass, bream, and catfish in the waters. Set up camp in Hugh White State Park for a real outdoors experience.

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Lake Tangipahoa is a 490-acre lake in Percy Quin State Park southwest of McComb. It is formed by the Lake Tangipahoa Dam, which was built on the Tangipahoa River in 1940. The Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks reports that the crappie and bluegill are especially well-sized, but bass and catfish fishing are also popular here. 

The Okhissa Lake is a beautiful 1,075-acre lake located in the sprawling Homochitto National Forest. Okhissa Lake holds the unique distinction of being the first lake in the country endorsed by legendary bass fisherman Bill Dance, who was involved in developing the fishing habitat.

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Pickwick Lake is a reservoir in Mississippi's northeastern corner, and it joins Mississippi, Alabama, and Tennessee. Fishermen here often find black bass, crappie, catfish, and paddlefish. Even if you don't catch anything here, the scenery will be worth the day spent on the water! 

Located in Lafayette, Panola, and Marshall counties, Sardis Lake covers an amazing 98,520 acres on the Little Tallahatchie River. Anglers will enjoy fishing for catfish, crappie, and bass. In fact, many say that Sardis Lake boasts some of the best crappie fishing in the state. You won’t want to miss out on the abundant opportunity provided by this incredible lake.

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5 Best Birdwatching Hikes in Mississippi From the plains of the Delta to the shores of the Sound, birding enthusiasts have plenty of options for watching the many species found throughout Mississippi. In fact, Mississippi is known for being a major thoroughfare for migrating birds, and the path that they travel is known as the Mississippi Flyway. Combine birdwatching with a day exploring nature with these five beautiful birdwatching hikes in Mississippi.

LeFleur's Bluff State Park is nearly 500 acres in the heart of Jackson, and the park is full of trails and boardwalks which are perfect for viewing woodland birds. There is a nest box trail to showcase prothonotary warblers, and birders can also seem Acadian flycatcher, wood thrush, summer tanager, and more. The park also includes the Mississippi Museum of Natural Science which conducts ornithological research.

Noxubee National Wildlife Refuge features a four-mile round-trip trail that runs alongside the Noxubee River. Birds which are commonly found include the Kentucky warbler and LeConte's sparrow, as well as a number of ducks and geese during the winter. The park is also a habitat for the endangered red-cockaded woodpecker. 

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St. Catherine Creek National Wildlife Refuge is a sprawling 25,000-acre refuge that has two nature trails—the 8.3-mile Magnolia Trail and the 2.2-mile Cabin Road Hiking Trail (which is also an ATV trail). The refuge was created to protect the waterfowl who use the area as a habitat. There have been 247 documented bird species that have been observed at the refuge, and there's a list available from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service so you can keep track of which ones you've seen.

The Grand Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve (NERR) covers 18,000 acres of bayous, salt marshes, and savannas. The wetlands here are mostly brackish, and the environment here is extremely diverse, giving birdwatchers incredible opportunities to see various species. Follow the Savanna Trail Boardwalk and see the American white pelican, brown pelican, osprey, reddish egret, and more. 

The Mississippi Sandhill Crane National Wildlife Refuge is another opportunity for bird lovers to see some spectacular wetland birds. There are two trails, the C.L. Dees Nature Trail and the Fontainebleau Nature Trail. This is the only place in the world to see the Mississippi sandhill crane—there are only 120 of the birds living in the refuge. 

Great Blue Heron

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6 Best Dirt Motorcycle Trails in Mississippi Motocross, or off-road motorcycle riding, is a sport that has seen a rise in popularity across the country since its beginnings. In Mississippi, a state where “mudding” and heading off road is among our favorite recreation, it should come as no surprise that dirt biking follows suit. For the ultimate day on the trails, check out these awesome dirt biking spots in Mississippi. 

Trace State Park is located near Tupelo in Belden, Mississippi. According to the Mississippi Department of Wildlife Fisheries and Parks (MSDWFP), Trace State Park contains 35 miles of trails which are accessible to motorcycles and ATVs. Be sure to sign a release first!

MX886 is a dirt track in Pontotoc, Mississippi, which is open the first and third weekend of every month. The track offers a variety of obstacles like jumps and different types of dirt for riders of varying experience. In addition, the track holds regular races for the Midsouth Motocross Championship Series. 

The track at Meridian’s Dirty Deeds is suitable for all skill levels and bike sizes, so all dirt bikers will feel at home.   Riders applaud the track for having some of the very best dirt in the state, excellent elevation changes, and a friendly and helpful staff. 

While primarily used by ATV riders looking to go mudding, Mudslangers makes for a prime location for off-roaders of the dirt biking variety too! This “recreational paradise” features an abundance of trails, mud holes, and even primitive camping if you decide to make a whole trip of it! Mudslangers is a huge local favorite with a die-hard community supporting it. 

Raine or shine, Crossroads ATV & Recreation Park in Clinton is open every weekend! From 9 a.m. until dark, you can start up your dirt bike and tear through the well-maintained trails at Crossroads. Be sure to check out the rules and regulations before you head out, to ensure that you and other riders stay safe during your time on the trails. 

The Meridian Motorcycle Association (MMA) has one focus, and that’s “to unite off road riding enthusiast through MMA member events, cookouts, race events, and social gatherings.” At Meridian OHV Park, it’s not just about the ridging, it’s about the strong sense of community. At this park, riders will find an impressive selection of trails of varying difficulties. Be sure to pay attention to the signs and follow the rules! 

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SPOTLIGHT: Things to Do in and Around Clarcko State Park With 24 state parks spread out all across the state, Mississippi offers plenty of opportunities to plan an exciting outdoor adventure. With the state’s temperate weather and opportunity to view an abundance of stunning flora and fauna year-round, any time is a good time to get outdoors. Clarcko State Park, not far from Meridian, makes for the perfect spot to start an adventure. Here are the best things to do in and around the park!  

Clarkco State Park is located south of Meridian and north of Quitman off of Highway 145. The park is 815 acres of beautiful woodlands and gently-sloped hills, with a 65 acre lake, disc golf course, picnic pavilions, splash pad, and more. 

#thelmaandlouiseofthebayou our morning coffee view #clarkostatepark

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Clarkco State Park features a five-mile nature trail that circles the park. Stroll the trail at your own leisure—it's sectioned into half-mile segments, so you don't have to commit to the whole five miles at once if you don't want to. With wooden bridges and well-marked paths, this is an ideal hike for the whole family.

Here at my second favorite place on Earth. (GCBC still holds #1)

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As you're strolling along the nature trail, make your way to the north end of the lake. Here, you'll find an observation tower that allows you a bird's-eye view of the entire park. You'll absolutely love the stunning perspective of Ivy Lake from atop the tower.  

One of the best features of Clarkco State Park is the wide variety of camping options available. Whether you enjoy primitive tent camping, RV camping, or you'd prefer to relax in a a furnished, air-conditioned cabin or cottage, Clarkco State Park has exactly what you're looking for. 

If you're looking for something to do outside of the park, consider heading to the Causeyville General Store in Meridian. The site began as a Native American trading post in 1869 and opened in 1895 as a general store and gristmill. Many of the original fixtures are still in place, and the gristmill is still used to produce corn meal that is sold on site.

Meridian, Mississippi.

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Trail mix and hot dogs over the campfire are fun for awhile, but if you're going to camp for a couple of days, you might want to venture into town for a meal or two. Mimmo's Ristorante Pizzeria is known for having authentic, delicious Italian food. Their extensive menu covers pizza, pasta, salads, sandwiches, and more. 

Dunn's Falls Water Park is about 20 minutes away from Clarkco State Park. This stunning park lies on the Chunky River and features a 65-foot waterfall that was created by John Dunn. The park is named in his honor and is a popular spot for swimming, fishing, hiking, and more. 

Fans of country music and history buffs alike will love visiting the Jimmie Rodgers Museum in Meridian. Jimmie Rodgers is often called "The Father of Country Music" and he was one of the first people to be inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame. Take a trip back in time as you view special artifacts from this influential musician's life.

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5 Best Watersport Retailers in Mississippi Can’t get enough of the water? If you’re in Mississippi, you’re in good company. Watersports seem to be a way of life for many, especially given Mississippi’s beautiful coast and endless opportunities to enjoy a day on the water. Whether you’re new to watersports or looking to perfect your skills, you can find everything you need at these five best watersport retailers in Mississippi. 

This isn’t your average paddleboard shop. The folks here live the paddleboarding lifestyle and can put their expertise to work for you. They’ve helped customers of all ages find their passion by offering rentals for paddleboards, kayaks, jet skis, and pontoon boats. If you choose to purchase your board here, they’re committed to helping you find the right one to suit your needs and skill level.

If you’re looking for adventure, you’ll find plenty of it here. They’re one of the dive and outdoor adventure stores in the state, offering a huge selection of in-stock inventory that’s ready for you to take out that day. They have a full line of SUPs and kayaks, plus they offer dive tours and other group adventures to help you fuel your love for all things water.

This national chain of watersport stores has just about everything you can imagine, and then some. They can outfit you with paddleboards, kayaks, safety gear, and all the best apparel to make you look good while you enjoy your new equipment. They’ve even got doggie life vests so your furry friends can join you on your adventures.

This sports chain is known for selling high-quality second-hand sports gear. Their inventory changes frequently, but they’ve been known for procuring wakeboards, tubes, ropes, body boards, SUPs, kayaks, canoes, and apparel to give you whatever experience you’re looking for. With locations in Hattiesburg and Ridgeland, call before you go to see what’s in stock! 

Kiteboarding is the specialty here, but you’ll be able to find a quality line of SUPs for those days when the wind doesn’t cooperate. Owned by one of the first kiteboards on the Mississippi coastline, you’ll be shopping with someone who knows the sport inside and out and can make sure you get only the best equipment to satisfy your needs.

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SPOTLIGHT: Things to Do in and Around Tishomingo State Park You can’t put a price on memories, but some memories are made more inexpensively than others. Some of your best ones come from family vacations, and there’s arguably no better place to travel than a state park. State parks usually have everything you could want inside park boundaries, from land and water sports to picnics and hiking and more. Best of all, it’s usually much cheaper to vacation at a state park than blowing your vacation fund at the beach or resort.

Tucked in the northeast corner of Mississippi lies Tishomingo State Park, a hidden jewel of sorts in the Mississippi landscape. This amazing state park isn’t your typical state park. The whole area is steeped in culture and history, offering a glimpse into the past of Paleo Indians and the stories they left behind. Visitors can view the giant rock formations and other natural wonders not found anywhere else in the state, along with hiking trails, disc golf, canoeing and fishing, rock climbing, a swimming pool, playground, and other amenities. 

This homey little American eatery isn’t far from Tishomingo State Park, and has something on the menu that’s likely to suit every appetite. They specialize in favorites like burgers, chicken fingers, and all the fixings to make your meal complete. 

If you’re looking to feed a crowd, Hometown Pizza is sure to please. This treasured pizza joint has all your favorite flavors, including their very own pizza sauce, along with pasta and wings.


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Brush up on local culture and history at this great history museum. Located in the old courthouse (a piece of history on its own), the museum displays several artifacts from the Civil War, Native Americans, and other cultural items. The architecture alone is worth the trip.

This little piece of history is located in the midst of Iuka, but is still considered one of the state’s most hidden gems. The park features three of its original six natural springs, which have been rumored to have healing properties. Local legend says an ailing chief drank its waters and his health was fully restored. You can take a taste for yourself (the St. Louis World’s Fair once touted it as the best water in the country). The park is also home to a playground, covered bridge, and log cabin.

For rainy days at the park or simply as an alternative to hiking and all things outdoors, head north about 45 minutes to Corinth, Mississippi, and challenge your mind and wits. The Corinth Escape Rooms are interactive games that put you in the center of the action. Solve puzzles and find clues to make your way out of the room before time runs out!

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9 Best Bait and Tackle Shops in Mississippi Being on the gulf coast and home to several lakes and rivers, there’s no doubt Mississippi has some of the best fishing in the country. Largemouth bass is a particular favorite in the state, along with sea trout, redfish, and catfish. However, you won’t win the day’s best catch without the right bait and gear. Stop by one of these best bait and tackle shops in Mississippi if you don’t want to go home empty handed.

As the local fisherman’s best friend, the staff here know the area well and help you find the best fishing spots for a successful day on the water. They’ve always got a high-quality selection of bait, lures, and other necessities in stock so you can get in, get out, and get on with your fishing goals.

Featuring both live and dead bait, you can find exactly what you need here without having to make a second trip elsewhere. Located right on the water, you won’t have to travel far to find a good fishing spot.

Fishermen dropping lines in Lake Washington know there’s no better place to shop than Bait-n-Thangs. This place offers a full-service fishing experience, from bait and tackle to camping cabins and RV hookups. They also have a fish cleaning station on site, plus they sell hunting and fishing licenses. 

This small yet sturdy shop is brimming with the greatest fishing gear in the area. They also carry all the extras you may have forgotten, like sunglasses, coolers, ice, and extra clothes.

Whether you’re planning on fishing in the marina or launching your boat here, you’ll want to first stop by the on-site shop for bait and other necessities to make your experience complete. It also helps they have some of the best views of the bayou, too.

Clay’s has earned its reputation among local fishermen and vacationers alike. They know their stuff, especially when it comes to finding the best gear to fish in the area. Regardless of where you’re fishing, be it the river or the lake, this shop has you covered.

There are lots of one-stop bait shops in Mississippi, but only Tommy’s offers a full suite of bait, tackle, gas, beer, snacks, and an on-site kitchen where you can fill up before you start your day on the water. They’re confident in the service they provide to you—if you don’t agree, they’ll refund your entire purchase price.

First stop on the #mississippihillcountrytrail #klr650

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Unlike many bait stores, McComb’s has a large retail area that makes it easy to shop for what you need. Because of their spacious size, they’re able to offer a variety of bait types and other accessories most shops simply don’t have the room for.

Folks love Bryant’s because it’s a no-frills shopping experience with hometown service. They’ve got just about everything you could want from a bait and tackle shop, and a little extra.

#lakelife #lake #cat

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10 Best Archery Outfitters in Mississippi Mississippi is well known for its outdoor lifestyle, especially when it comes to archery. The state plays home to several top-notch archery stores that aren’t just selling archery supplies, but helping you know how they work and making sure you get the best gear for your needs. Whether you’re a seasoned archer or just starting to enjoy the sport, you’ll want to prioritize a visit to one of these 10 best archery outfitters in Mississippi for all your archery needs. 

Specializing in Mathews bows and other name brands, this archery shop is a favorite throughout the state. They offer financing to help you get the bow and gear you want at a price to fit your budget. You can also rely on them for all your servicing needs, even if you didn’t buy your gear from them.

There’s no greater shopping experience than knowing you’re buying from fellow hunters who share your love of archery. They have all the knowledge and expertise to help you get the most from your investment, and can help you find the right gear to suit your skill level. Their selection is huge, making them a one-stop shop for all your archery needs.

Catering to all things hunting and outdoors, locals agree you won’t find a better archery store in the area. They’re your single source for bows, arrows, and accessories, plus they have an on-site indoor range with lounge so you can test your new purchases. This place is massive, and you may never want to leave.

The staff here knows their stuff, and their fans have taken notice. They’re among the best archery shops in the state because they don’t just sell bows—they take care to ensure you’re getting the best products for YOU. As a result, you get all the products, service and support you need to improve your skills.

If you’ve never been here before, it might just become your new favorite place. They help you get the full hunting experience, everything from choosing the right bow and other equipment to processing the deer you scored with your new purchase to keeping your bow looking and working like new.

This shop specializes in a little bit of everything outdoors, but their archery pro shop isn’t to be missed. Their staff knows the sport well, and can help you get your bow in perfect working order, even if you didn’t buy it from them. They sell a variety of archery equipment, but their customers know them best for their speedy bow services.

If you’re looking to test your archery skills, there’s no better place than this epic indoor range. With over 45 targets to shoot in a climate-controlled environment, it’s the perfect place for archers of all ages and skill levels. They also have an interactive VR experience that lets you practice with lifelike hunting scenarios to get you field-ready faster.

Had some fun tonight with my lady. Oh and @kaitlin226 tagged along too =]

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Carrying some of the best brands in archery, you can expect to find Bowtech, PSE, Elite, and others in their inventory. The team here is dedicated to helping every archer get the best experience in the field or at the range. They offer products for archers of all skill levels and ages, even kids!

Southern Sportsman is known as the bow expert in the area, offering tunings and other services to ensure you never miss a shot. They know their stuff here and never fail to put it to work for you.

If you need your bow tuned, you can expect perfection at Stan’s Outdoor. Their fans love them because they know they’re in for high-quality gear and industry expertise that isn’t just another sales pitch.

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10 Best Motorsport Retailers in Mississippi Mississippi’s outdoor scene proves that some of the best things lie off the beaten path, and you’ll need a good ATV off-road retailer to help you get there. Off-roading isn’t your typical sport—each adventure is different, and you’ll never know what to expect. Luckily, these 10 amazing retailers in Mississippi carry all the goods and gear to ensure every ride is the best one yet. 

Your off-roading adventure should begin with the pros at Adventure ATV. Here, you’re dealing with fellow riders who have first-hand knowledge of the vehicles they sell and can help you make the right choice the first time. They offer both new and used models from top names like Polaris, Can-Am, and Argo

That sweet rzr line up 😎

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Suzuki, Can-Am, and Polaris dominate the showroom at Natchez Powersports. They order directly from the manufacturers, which mean they also have access to manufacturer-direct rebates, financing, and deals to help you get your new ride for the best price. They’re also your one-stop shop for service needs to keep your ride running like new.

Dedicated to all things Honda and Yamaha motorsports, you know you’ll be getting one of the highest quality off-roading vehicles possible. Even if you don’t buy your ATV or dirt bike from them, you can rely on them for hard-to-find parts that will keep your current vehicle in tip-top shape. 

Big Muddy’s off-roading vehicles are made for the dirt-and-mud lifestyle. They feature brands like Textron Off-Road and Cushman to handle whatever the trails throw your way. You’ll also appreciate their knowledge and expertise behind each vehicle they sell.

Touted as having the lowest prices in America, their fans love that they don’t have to sacrifice performance for value. They specialize in brands like Yamaha and Honda, as well as a large selection of pre-owned rides to fit any budget. They’re also a quality source for OEM parts and service.

Kawasaki, Yamaha, and Honda are just a few of the fan favorites you’ll find in their showroom. Their huge selection of new and used inventory all under one roof means you’re likely to find what you’re looking for without having to go elsewhere.

It's past the point of a want, it's a need #dualsportadv

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Don’t let the name sway you—they’re just as dedicated to the off-road lifestyle as two-wheeled highway adventures. Choose from best-in-class names like Kawasaki, Yamaha, and Can-Am, to name a slight few. Their customers love the friendly service and wide selection of off-road vehicles that suit all skill levels and purposes.

Devoted to only the best brands like Polaris and Kawasaki, their showroom is brimming with both new and used models to fit your needs. You can bring your vehicle in for oil changes, accessories, tires, and everything else to keep you riding.

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Jeeps and trucks, ATVs and dirt bikes—whatever your preference, N2Deep has all the tires and accessories you need to trick out for ride for the off-roading lifestyle. Their no-credit-needed policy makes it easy for you to get what you need to stay in the driver’s seat. If you don’t live nearby, no worries—they ship all over the country to help you get what you need.

If you’re looking for the best prices on your new off-road toy, you’ll find them at Fun ATV. Offering high-quality brands like CFMoto and Coolster at below MSRP, you can start riding for much less than the “other guys.” You can save time on the credit approval process by doing it online via their website.

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9 Best Winter Cabin Camping Spots in Mississippi Who says camping can’t be a cold weather vacation? If you’re sad to see camping season end in Mississippi, you should know that it never truly ends. From state parks to KOAs, there are dozens of places throughout the state that offer cabins for a warmer camping experience. Pack your gear and book a spot at one of these 10 best camping cabins in Mississippi. 

If you’re looking for quiet adventure, you’ll find it at Brushy Creek Ranch. This beautiful horse ranch has shelter for both you and your equine friends. You can choose from one of several rustic waterfront cabins, along with open and covered horse enclosures. If you don’t have your own horse, you can rent one from the ranch for an additional fee. With more than 40 miles of trails to discover, it’s the best place to spend a quiet vacation exploring and relaxing.

Though known as a hot spot for summer fun, Red Wolf Wilderness Camp is also enjoyable when the weather turns cold. Their fully stocked catch-and-release pond offers all the fishing you handle (included in your rental). Nestled in the De Soto National Forest, the park offers over 40 miles of trails to trek. The cabins are more spacious than other locations, and make your stay feel more like a home away from home rather than a rustic experience.

For those who want to do more than enjoy the natural scenery, Trace State Park has a little something extra to offer its campers—the golf course. If you’re camping in a cabin, you can enjoy the 18-hole course with no green fees. It’s also a well-known place for fishing and hiking.

You’ll definitely want to visit Paradise Ranch & Resort in the summer, but don’t disregard this beautiful locale in the winter. As home of the New Zealand Red Stag Deer, you’ll have plenty of company from the animal kingdom during your stay. Guests marvel at these breathtaking creatures that are seemingly everywhere at the resort. The area also offers prime fishing opportunities and waterfront views from your cabin.

Small but charming, these camping cabins offer all the comforts of home while bringing you closer to nature. The water park will be closed, but you can still enjoy the sandy beach, fishing pier, and fire pits. Some of their cabins are situated directly on the water, giving you the best views of the entire campground.

Everyone’s favorite food-stealing bear is front and center at this family friendly campground. Reminiscent of the fictitious Jellystone Park, your picnic baskets are safe during your stay. The cabins range in size to accommodate cozy couples up to large family gatherings and everyone in between.

Cabin sweet cabin.

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If you’re among the type who loves to do next to nothing while camping, you’re in luck—it doesn’t get any more peaceful than Little Black Creek in the winter. You can hit the hiking/walking trails for a little fresh air, or resolve to simply relax and unwind with beautiful lakefront views from your cabin. You may never want to leave.

Beautiful rock formations and fun hiking experiences await visitors at Tishomingo. The area’s natural beauty is only surpassed by its significance in our country’s history. Campers can choose from several different cabins to accommodate their group. If you love hiking, anytime of year makes the perfect time to visit this unique state park.

Percy Quin State Park is a favorite among winter golfers. Beautiful magnolias, wildlife, and a 490-acre lake set the backdrop for a championship golf course. Guests can book a stay in a cabin, or upgrade their “camping” experience to the motel. 

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Start Your Trek: 7 Best Hiking Retailers in Mississippi Whether you’re a seasoned outdoor adventurer or a novice hiker in Mississippi, you’ll be glad to find a store that caters directly to hikers’ needs. Most hiking retailers carry all the specialty items you just can’t find in mass merchandise stores. Plus, you usually get the added benefit of personalized service and expertise that you can put to work on your next journey. Before you hit the trails, head to one of these seven best hiking retailers in Mississippi. 

This charming downtown hiking shop will make you feel right at home as you shop some of the best brands the trails have ever seen. In business for over 60 years, the folks here are truly dedicated to hikers’ needs, and know the area well so you can cash in on their experience to make the most of your trip. Choose from top brands like Chaco footwear, Patagonia, and KAVU, among other top quality names.

Buy any Patagonia backpack and get 50% off any trucker hat! More colors and styles are on the way!

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Dedicated to helping their communities get outside, Buffalo Peak practices what they preach. When you enter their store, you can be assured you’re dealing with fellow hikers who are just as passionate about the trails as you are. They carry popular names in hiking like KEEN, the North Face, and CamelBak, to name a few.

Whether it’s zero degrees, a hundred degrees, or somewhere in between, Cozy Outfitters has you covered with high-quality apparel and gear for your next hiking trip. They can help you outfit from head to toe to ensure you’re never too hot or cold on the trails. Plus, you can count on only the best names in outdoors, including Gerber knives, Columbia clothing, and Streamlight flashlights.

This place is everything a hiking store should be, right down to its cheerful exterior and friendly service. Dedicated to all things hiking and backpacking, the folks here know what area hikers need and have assembled an extensive collection of clothing, bags, and gear to make every day on the trails a successful one. The staff here are also charmed by the great outdoors and spend much of their own time hiking and exploring. They’ll help you find the best brands at good prices, including their lines of Black Diamond, Southern Marsh, and Mountain Hardwear.

Mountain Hardwear 50L Outdry (Waterproof) Backpack / $230.00 / Azul Blue Did you know we carry a waterproof backpack that is *perfect* for hiking through the rain & snow with ZERO worries about your gear getting wet?? Well.. we do! πŸ˜‰ Trekking backpack, with an ergonomic design for continuous comfort. When you’re moving fast and trying to keep things light, The Ozonic™ 50 is ready to handle the most heinous conditions with a three-layer rainroom tested main compartment constructed with OutDry™ waterproofing technology for protecting against the elements. Wicking air mesh shoulder straps and a vented back panel promote air circulation, and a softly rounded hip belt with an offset buckle allows for a supportive, snug fit. Optimally placed stretch and zipper pockets allow for easy access to the essentials so you can keep on going. #mountainhardwear #ozonic #outdry #waterproof #snowproof #finditatpaxtonpeak #shopsmall #shoplocal #306jeffersonstreet #getoutside #backpacking

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With multiple stores throughout Mississippi, you’re likely to find all the basic gear and apparel you need for your next trail adventure. Their national brand and widespread network means you can count on popular brands like the North Face, Yeti, and Magellan to complete your adventure.

With great prices and all of your favorite brands, you simply cannot go wrong with Green Canyon. This cozy store has all kinds of comfortable outdoor apparel like Patagonia jackets and hats to keep your head warm on those colder hikes. You’ll also find great grabs like North Face backpacks and Ray Ban sunglasses. 

This new Royal Robbins shop jacket is πŸ‘ŒπŸΌπŸ‘ŒπŸΌπŸ‘ŒπŸΌ@royalrobbins

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At 601 Sports, you’ll find all varieties of footwear, outdoor apparel, hunting gear, and more. For great hiking footwear, you’ll find brands like Merrell and KEEN. For outdoor apparel, find products from Patagonia, Carhartt, and the North Face. 

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Camping Done Right: 7 Essential Outdoor Stores in Mississippi When you’re heading out into the wilderness to camp, it’s imperative to be prepared. Fortunately for those in Mississippi, you’re never too far away from an awesome outdoor store. From big-name chains that stock everything you could ever need to local shops with unique, marked-down options, here are seven essential outdoor stores in Mississippi. 

With over 230 stores spread out across 16 states, Academy Sports + Outdoors is a leader in camping supplies and equipment. They provide all the essential you'll need, from Coleman tents and lanterns to Off! bug spray.

Bass Pro Shops began in 1972, and today the outdoor retailer has over 100 locations across North America. Bass Pro Shops stores are designed to be an experience—the aquariums and elaborate displays are as much a draw as the extensive selection of camping gear. In addition to brands such as Eureka, Stanley, and more, Bass Pro Shops has their own brand featuring almost anything you can think of, including flashlights, outdoor furniture, tents, and sleeping bags.

Sacks Outdoors opened in 1951 as a military surplus store. The business is still family-owned, and today is run by the third generation of the Sackler family. Located in downtown Hattiesburg, Sacks Outdoors is dedicated to keeping prices low while providing excellent personal service to their customers. They carry camping gear such as coolers and bags as well as a wide selection of rugged apparel and accessories by brands like Timberland and Carhartt.

Buy any Patagonia backpack and get 50% off any trucker hat! More colors and styles are on the way!

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The motto at Sportsman's Warehouse is "the great indoors for those who love the great outdoors,” and when you visit them, you'll see why. They offer an incredible selection of almost anything you could need for a camping trip, all at reasonable prices. Some of their premium brands include Kelty backpacks, tents, and sleeping bags, and Yeti coolers and storage.

C & C Outdoors is a local family-owned business in Wiggins that specializes in carrying all the camping gear you'll need for your next trip. From Blue Rhino propane to barbecue supplies, tents, snacks, and mattresses, let the friendly staff at C & C Outdoors help you find everything you need for the perfect camping experience. If they don't have what you need in stock, they can often get it for you in as little as one day!

Green Canyon Outfitters is an outdoor sports shop based out of Mississippi. Originally, the store was operated entirely online, but eventually they opened a storefront in Bay St. Louis. A second location soon followed on the Square in Oxford. They focus on products which are high-quality, such as Grand Trunk hammocks and durable Silipint drinking cups.

Come see us this second Saturday in the Bay!

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If you're going camping in the Tupelo area, you must stop by Core Cycle + Outdoor. They provide high-quality gear for all of your outdoor needs, and their expert team can help you find exactly what you need to have a safe and memorable camping trip. They believe in promoting an active lifestyle, and they'll help get you ready to go in brands like Patagonia and Eagles Nest Outfitters.

Upgrade in progress! Thanks @corecycleandoutdoor and @theboardsnest for hooking @avery15barnett up for his bday! #bigair

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5 Energizing Hikes in Mississippi If you’re looking for a hike that feels a little more like a workout and less like a leisurely stroll, there are several routes throughout the Magnolia State that offer varying terrains, inclines, and obstacles to get the heart pumping. To challenge yourself on your trek through the wilderness, check out these five energizing hikes in Mississippi!

If you're really looking for a challenge, try the Black Creek Trail. This 41-mile hike is definitely a stretch for an intermediate hiker, but it's relatively easy terrain. Keep in mind this is not a loop, so either plan to have a car take you back to your starting point or double back once you get about halfway. 

The Tanglefoot Trail is a Mississippi Rails to Trails conversion, meaning it was originally a railroad that is now a hiking trail. In fact, the original railroad was built by Col. William Clark Faulkner, grandfather of the famous author. The total length of the trail is 43.6 miles, but of course, you aren’t expected to tackle the whole thing! With plenty of changing scenery—including fields, wetlands, and six communities—this hike should keep you energized the whole time. 

The hiking area at Ethel Vance Natural Area (or Vance Park as it's known locally) is about 13 miles of varying terrain. Perfect for an intermediate hiker, most of the trail is an easy walk, but you'll find some hills and plenty of beautiful scenery to keep you interested and energized throughout your hike. 

Traveling there and back, the Tuxachanie Trail is miles of ridges, wetlands, and forest. The Tuxachanie is another trail that follows an abandoned railroad. Scenery includes live oaks, pitcher plants, creeks, ponds, and wooden footbridges. Be aware that a short section of the trail is also a horse trail.

At Clark Creek Natural Area, you can choose between a primitive trail or a more modern "improved" trail. For an exciting intermediate hike, give the primitive trail a shot. The trail is 2.6 miles-long and usually takes about three hours to complete. And you'll get a huge rush when you come across the waterfall on this route! 

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