Tunica to Helena
700 Basket Bar
This long series of luxurious sandbars are full of birds and thick with fish -- and broken up into in a long line of wild islands -- and are found opposite the thickest concentration of casinos outside of Vegas and Atlantic City! During higher water levels above 25 Memphis Gauge paddlers can opt for the enjoyment of the back channel. Stay RBD as you pass Finley Bar (Mile 702.8) and follow the back channel a full five or six miles downstream before popping out at Peter’s Bend (Commerce Bend) near Rabbit Island.
Paddlers Routes through Commerce and Mhoon Bends:
Commerce and Mhoon Bends carve a classy S Curve through deep forests and extensive sandbars of the Mississippi Delta, offering great paddling, picnicking, and camping in a wide variety of landscapes, from woods to soft sand to fascinating gravel bars.
Main Channel is fairly straightforward. Go to the outside of each bend for the fastest waters, follow middle channel out of each bend, and make your crossings with the main outward thrust of water. Watch for tows and strong eddies.
Rabbit Island Back Channel
In high water go with the blossoming currents bank left across the wide watery expanse as close to the trees as you can find flow. Several miles past Commerce Point you can paddle behind a small forested island through which the channel narrows and gurgles along through stands of submerged willows and cottonwoods before re-entering the main channel a couple of miles above Mhoon Landing.
Mhoon Bar Back Channel
At high water you can stay tight bank right as you exit Commerce Bend, and swirl around the last big eddy at Ashley Point, and then follow the receding line of trees downstream. Watch sharp for bankside beaver and treetop bald eagles (which are known to next in this area). There is a hump of sand bottom end topped with willows and cottonwoods. Paddle behind these and back out into the main channel.