50 Wilderness Sites Across America
Cypress knobs in Black Creek Wilderness, Mississippi (Courtesy of Justin Meissen via Flickr)
Black Creek, Mississippi (Courtesy of Flickr user ** Parapluie **)
A Yellow-blotched map turtle, a rare species found only around Black Creek, pokes its head above water (Courtesy of Ryan Poplin via Flickr)
Two canoers on the Pascagoula River, of which Black Creek is a tributary (Courtesy of Visit Mississippi via Flickr)
De Soto National Forest, Mississippi (Courtesy of Jennifer Cowley via Flickr)

Black Creek Wilderness

Floodplains, red maples and white sand riverbanks

smithsonian.com

Location: Mississippi
Size: 5,052 acres
Year Designated: 1984
Fast Fact: Black Creek is Mississippi’s only designated Wild and Scenic River.

When thinking of Mississippi and rivers, Black Creek might not be the first that comes to mind—but it is Mississippi’s only designated Wild and Scenic River, a designation meant to protect river ecosystems in America. Less than 0.03 percent of all of Mississippi’s river miles fall under this protection, and it’s all in a 21-mile stretch contained within the Black Creek Wilderness. The river bisects the Black Creek Wilderness area, creating floodplains filled with hardwoods like red maple, oak, pine and sweet gum. The banks of the river fluctuate between 5 feet and 20 feet in width, but their white sandbars offer visitors an excellent place for picnicking or camping.

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