Biloxi or Bust

November 15, 2018  •  Leave a Comment

Biloxi or Bust 








We checked into our RV Park north of New Orleans on a muggy, quiet, mid-week afternoon. For the first few days, humidity and rain were the order of the day, so we stuck close to home, relaxing in warm 70F heat, wandering around the pretty darn cool RV park (https://www.reunionlakerv.com/).
Then the rains hit and hit hard. One day alone we were graced with a lovely 2+ inches.
To add insult to injury, within a week we had racked up three tornado warnings plus the added gift of an overnight frost warning. Time for a road trip!
We closed up the fifth wheel and bolted for Biloxi, Mississippi.
The Gulf Coast is different from anything I've seen; certainly unique from the West Coast. Sure, you've got the usual fishing boats, sandy beaches, seabirds and souvenir shops, but the distinctness is vast.


Hurricanes make their presence known, even when the weather is perfect. I can't be sure that the oh-so-many empty lots with nothing growing but 'For Sale' signs were the result of 2005's horrifying Katrina, but that's my guess. Monuments, photographs and stories of survival follow the coastline between New Orleans and Biloxi. Thirteen years have passed ... but not really.




Unlike the coastlines of California or B.C., where homes tuck in as close as possible to the lapping waves, since Katrina, homes in 100-year floodplains must be built to a new code based on height of past flood waters. I think. It's convoluted and confusing to me, but the resulting construction is, if nothing else, interesting. Homes of all shapes and sizes sit six feet or more above ground, looking larger than their actual square footage. Some loosely enclose the lower levels, but the majority are left open and used for parking or storage. https://www.fema.gov/pdf/rebuild/mat/sec5.pdf


Fishing for Redfish 


Outside Biloxi. 26 miles of manmade beach


Defying Katrina, the Biloxi lighthouse stands as a symbol of resistance. Erected in 1848, it is one of the first cast-iron lighthouses in the South. Its construction was sponsored by Mississippi Representative, Jefferson Davis, who would become President of the Confederate States, and remained in operation until 1939. In 2005, Katrina's storm surge enveloped a third of its 64 feet, destroying the electrical system but otherwise only succeeding in breaking windows and loosening lower bricks.

Biloxi is a town filled with casinos

Palace Casino outdoor pool

Palace Casino which is a smoke-free facility


Bridge over Biloxi Bay to Ocean Springs
As you probably guessed, Biloxi's main claim to fame is Jefferson Davis ... so stick with me. That's the next post!

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