The state of MS has a LOT of water, especially since it borders the GULF OF MEXICO. I'm just going to briefly mention a few bodies of water, however.
Starting at the north:
Sardis is the northernmost of three huge reservoirs. I really wanted to head up there when I lived in MS
but I didn't get the chance. Apparently many people from Memphis go to Sardis, as it is not a very far drive.
This lake is a good 10 miles long, over a mile wide, and 60' deep in parts.
Home page: http://www.mvk.usace.army.mil/Lakes/sardislake/
This lake is smaller than Sardis, but even closer to Memphis! The central part of the lake is maybe
three miles long and almost a mile wide. This lake is very popular with sailors for its steady winds, even though
it's much smaller than Sardis. I almost went here for a race last year ('04) but it wound up being stormy that weekend I think.
Lake home page: http://www.mvk.usace.army.mil/Lakes/ArkabutlaLake/
This is the second (and smallest) of the three large reservoirs in northern MS, about 15 miles south of Sardis.
Enid lake is about 8 miles long and again about a mile wide.
Lake home page: http://www.mvk.usace.army.mil/Lakes/enidlake/
The "core" of Grenada is maybe 3 miles across in any direction, with the two "horns" being probably another
three miles to the northeast and east. It's about 15 miles south of lake Enid, which makes it a good 45-50 minutes
south of Memphis or about 90 minutes from the Columbus/Starkville area.
sailed on Grenada lake with my friend on his two Sunfish. The winds were quite light, however,
on that particular day. Still, it's an excellent sized lake for a boat like a Hobie when the winds are up.
I actually had my Hobie with me at that lake, but we decided it wasn't windy enough to be worth putting it in the water.
Lake home page: http://www.mvk.usace.army.mil/Lakes/grenadalake/
(Sorry, for map click here: http://www.mapquest.com/maps/map.adp?ci ... s&state=MS
, north-west part of town )
This lake appears to be large, but it is not. I should know, because I'm more familiar with that lake than
any other in MS. On the map it appears to be a good 1 mile square. Unfortunately there are two problems:
1) It was just dammed off in 1987 and so there are still tree stumps everywhere.
2) They only dredge the shipping channel, so even the shallow draft of our Hobies still can't visit all areas.
My rudders would kick up all the time unless I stayed in the channel, which isn't always the easiest thing to do. Better than nothing, but not *much* better.
Also, there's always somebody that swears they've seen an alligator off in the weeds, so keep your eyes open!
Sorry, no lake home page.
Ross Barnett reservoir
(Above is the part of the map you care about. For the rest of the map, click here: http://www.rossbarnettreservoir.org/ind ... &viewmap=1
Ross Barnett is a great place to sail! Home lake to Jerome Vaughan, for those of you who know him, just on the edge of Jackson, MS.
This is almost as big as Sardis, 2-3 miles wide and maybe 10 miles long. Not as deep, though,
from what I understand. The day I went out there with Jerome, the winds were quite light, but I don't know
how indicitive that is of the usual weather around there. If it's windy and you're in the area, it's worth your while!
Home page: http://www.rossbarnettreservoir.org/ind ... servoirmap
As you can see, the Biloxi/Gulfport region is right on the Gulf of Mexico, offering (for all practical purposes)
unlimited sailing opportunities. The thing to keep in mind, however, is that in this area much of the water is extremely shallow.
Shallow to the point that your rudders will kick up hundreds of yards from shore. Sometimes. Here and there.
It's also quite muddy, but that's the case with all bodies of water I've seen in MS.
The first time I was there, it was for the Slip to Ship
catamaran race. However, my friend and I showed up late
and so we didn't actually get to participate. Might have been all for the best, however, as winds were 30+mph and
several boats apparently broke. We did, however, learn that the bridges across Biloxi bay are just
high enough for a H16 mast to pass under. Well, except for the swivelling railroad bridge.
If you're there, check out Ocean Springs Yacht Club. http://www.osyc.com/
Great facilities and beach from which to launch! In the map above, it's just on the northeast side of the
hwy90 bridge, immediately adjacent to the highway. You'll see it easily from the bridge if you're crossing over
into Ocean Springs from Biloxi.
Well, that's it for Mississippi! Hope I've been helpful and informative when it comes to places to sail!