From Bowling Green, it’s a four-hour interstate drive to Memphis… or should I say West Memphis, AR, where our campground is located, and where we typically spend the vast majority of our time when making this stop. I don’t think we went into Memphis proper at all the last two times (in 2022 and 2020) we came through, but we did this time, so I titled this post Memphis instead of West Memphis.
Anyway. The main draw for us in stopping here is the Mississippi River. Our campground of choice sits on the bank of the river, giving us a front row seat to the shipping activity on the water.
All four times in Memphis, we’ve stayed at Tom Sawyer’s RV Park, in West Memphis, AR, about twenty minutes from downtown Memphis. The focus of the park is, of course, the Mississippi, but there are also trails around the property, and the multi-use crushed gravel Big River Trail, leading to the Big River Crossing (the longest pedestrian bridge over the Mississippi) into downtown Memphis, passes the campground entrance.
Running the Big River Trail is delightful–it’s flat and in great shape–but it feels kind of desolate through this part of West Memphis. I’m not sure I’d recommend it to a solo female. Instead, I’d recommend driving ten minutes down the road to the Big River Crossing, where you’ll have lots of running company, and you’ll get to run over the Mississippi! I wanted to run the bridge, but in the interest of time I ran from the campground, and missed the big bridge views.
Eating and drinking
And then we ventured forth! J had identified several breweries that interested him (based on current beer lists and pics of their taprooms): our hope had been to hit the highly rated Grind City Brewing Co and Soul and Spirits Brewery, both located within walking distance of one another just over the bridge on the western side of Memphis proper, but they are both closed on Tuesdays so we settled on our third choice, Crosstown Brewing Co.
Crosstown’s taproom is a big, airy spot in a cool stretch of music/art/beer/food/apartment establishments, and I liked the highly tart cranberry sour. J, who loves a hazy IPA, wasn’t crazy about Crosstown’s not-very-hazy IPA, but we had a lovely time hanging out in the taproom.
To supplement our Chai Pani dinner, we picked up peanut stew form Global Cafe in the same complex as the brewery. It was delicious, and we got extra to boost a future dinner as we trekked west with unclear dining destinations.
Next stop on our way west: Tulsa!