Run the river

Mississippi Magazine|July - August 2020

Run the river
Singing the song of the Pascagoula
ANNE BRALY

As drivers race along the I-10 bridge spanning the Pascagoula River, most have no clue what lies beneath. The peaceful, beautiful side to the River is one filled with flowers that bloom in spring and summer, painting the swamp with color; a fisherman wetting a line in the warm morning sun; or a kayaker out for a paddle. And perhaps no one knows these waters better than Capt. Benny McCoy who leads tours of the Pascagoula, one of the last free-flowing rivers in America and the largest by volume of any in the lower 48 states.

McCoy knows as much as any scientist about flora and fauna around the river. After working in highway construction and the shipyard, he returned to the river—his boyhood playground—and began offering tours of the river in a flat-bottomed riverboat fitted with padded bench-style seats and a roof overhead for protection from the sun. McCoy’s Swamp and River Tours set sail from a dock on the riverbank at the Pascagoula River Audubon Center in Moss Point about 20 years ago. Tours on the Pascagoula River run daily, weather permitting, and are $30 for adults and $22 for children under the age of 12.

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July - August 2020