Yazoo Co., Miss., Levee Road - between Satartia & Holly Bluff

Discussion in 'Tejas and the Gulf States' started by lewis_jr1, Nov 12, 2015.

  1. lewis_jr1

    lewis_jr1 Been here awhile

    Joined:
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    Long Island 'til mid-13
    About mid-way between the Mississippi towns of Satartia (east of Bentonia, along Hwy 433) and Holly Bluff (NW of Satartia), lies a drainage canal system built by the Army Corps of Engineers. A chunk (maybe 1/4) of that system runs through the Panther Wildlife Management Area. The county maintained road between Satartia and H/B is gen. called Satartia Rd.

    Where Satartia Rd. intersects the drainage canal, there are parallel access and maintenance roads maintained by the Corp. - that is to say: federally owned and maintained, public access roads. These access roads are wide(ish) single lane, hard pack, white rock embedded dirt roads that run atop the dual levees that contain the drainage system. This levee road system is called "Whittington East Levee Road" on the east side (SE, really) of the drainage levee, and simply "West Levee Road" on the west side (NW, really).

    Both levee roads that run north from Satartia Rd. are well maintained, free of obstruction, flat and easy rides for 12-15 miles, or more (with breaks to cross other roads and eventually state Hwy 49, north of Yazoo City). I've ridden both north-bound sections on Tourance tires with 50-65 lbs. of gear without issue. The scenery is mostly of woods and wetlands. I saw plenty of birds, a few deer, some turkey, and an amazing qty. of oppossum (mating season, perhaps?). There are signs for bear (small, black), but I didn't spot any. Note that Panther Wildlife Area ain't no sanctuary - I'd not ride through there on opening day of deer season.

    The southern legs are less interesting, but still enjoyable. On the eastern side, Whittington Levee Rd. only runs 2-3 mi. before deadending in a scary, steep-downhill turnaround. I chickened out and turned around up on the narrow one-lane road, instead. On the western side, there's some dispute as to whether the road is all or "fully" public, or whether it quickly becomes a private road once you turn south off of Satartia Rd. I had an old farmer chase me down last summer in his brand new F250 - he only caught up with me because I'd stopped to turn around when I came upon a closed gate. He claimed to own that portion of the levee road, but a) its maintenance was identical to the Corp's roadways, and b) a local judge later told me that he thought the road was owned by the Corp. at that point. In his favor, I had run across at least one cattle gap. Regardess, I apologized and shook the man's hand before returing the same way that I came in.

    Oh yeah, because the Corp. uses some kind of imported, white rock for its road cover, the dust is kicks up in summertime is a major pita. That stuff got everywhere; it's almost like talcum powder. That might explain why the farmer's new pickup was white.

    Along the west-NW path out of Satartia towards Holly Bluff, there's also decent road that runs clockwise once you turn south onto it. That road is called "Clear Lake Road", and it runs gen. south, before turning west, and then turning north as it winds back up to Satartia Rd. The final mile or two requires that you ride through what are probably privately owned field roads (hard pack, no rock whatsoever), but you could also turn around any time after you pass the working oil pump (not a rig) or gigantic abandoned water tanks and simply return the way you came on the county maintained Clear Lake Rd. I've ridden the entire road in both directions without issue or trouble. It's entirely hard pack, much of it laden with rock.
    #1
  2. slammer449

    slammer449 Adventurer

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2009
    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    Madison,Ms
    Thanks for the information about the levee roads. I'll have to try that one. There are a lot of great gravel roads out in that area. Thinking about the trestle road area tomorrow if it works out
    #2
  3. on2wheels52

    on2wheels52 Long timer

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2006
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    3,670
    Location:
    northern Arkansas
    I'll be sure to look for it should I get that way. I had never seen a levee until this year on the AR portion of the TAT. All those years of listening to "When the Levee Breaks" finally made a little more sense.
    Jim
    #3