Welcome to the
Upper Delta Region
greatriverroad.com’s coverage of the Upper Delta Region of the Middle Mississippi River Valley consists of the Bootheel region of southeastern Missouri, northeastern Arkansas, and western Tennessee. The Upper Delta denotes a cultural region rather than a geographic one. Strictly speaking from a geographical perspective the Mississippi River Delta is located south of New Orleans.
Missouri’s Bootheel Region
The Missouri Bootheel is the southeastern most part of the state of Missouri, extending south of 36°30’ north latitude that forms the boundary between Missouri and the rest of Arkansas. The area gets its name because its shape in relation to the rest of the state resembles the heel of a boot. While much of southeastern Missouri lowlands extending as far north as Cape Girardeau considers itself to be in the Bootheel region, the county of Pemiscot and portions of Dunklin and New Madrid counties are the only counties that lie in the area that forms the Bootheel shape. The communities of the region offer a number of events throughout the year including musical events, several fairs including the annual Delta Fair which is the largest fair in the area, and art exhibits. greatriverroad.com invites visitors to explore this unique region of Missouri.
Northeast Arkansas features two regions with contrasting terrains. Crowley’s Ridge with its Scenic Byway travels through country that borders the Ozark Mountains. Along the Mississippi River the terrain is flat bottomlands. Each region offers visitors a variety of attractions including state parks, museums, conservation areas, and interesting place to experience. The counties of Clay, Greene, Craighead, Poinsett, and Cross comprise the upper two thirds of the Crowley's Ridge Parkway National Scenic Byway. Four state parks lie along the parkway and cultural attractions can be found in Jonesboro, home of Arkansas State University. Many of the regions communities are host to small museums that interprets the area’s history. Northeastern Arkansas along the Mississippi River offers its visitors a variety of attractions. The downtown districts of Blytheville and Osceola have distinctive architecture in their downtown districts. The small communities of Manila and Earle have county museums covering the history and culture of the region. At Sans Souci Landing visitors can get a great up close view of the Mississippi River. Nature lovers will find plenty to do at Big Lake National Wildlife Refuge and Wapanocca National Wildlife Refuge.
The Great River Road enters Tennessee from the north along TN-78 into Lake County and heads for Memphis. As part of the Upper Delta region of the Mississippi River, Western Tennessee offers its visitors a wide array of activities ranging from nature to history for travelers to get a feel of the atmosphere and culture of America’s South. Reelfoot Lake State Park and Fort Pillow State Park are popular destinations. The Reelfoot Lake area is a hot spot for Bald Eagle watching during January and February. Small museums like the Tipton County Museum, Veterans Memorial & Nature, the Dyersburg Army Air Base Veteran's Museum, and Alex Haley Museum And Interpretive Center can be found throughout the region.