|Campsite 14 at Bayou Segnette State Park|
Bayou Segnette is located in Westwego, LA which is about 15 minutes away from downtown New Orleans (on the West bank of the Mississippi). The sites are very large and well spaced. There's no sewer, but the sites have electric and water, and the campground has free wifi. The bonus feature is that the campground has free laundry rooms. I think that all of Louisiana state campgrounds offer this - what a nice feature!
Everything in this park is about flood control. There are concrete levees all along the road where the Bayou runs, and it looks as if they've built new gates.
|The levee wall at Bayou Segnette State Park|
|Levee Gate at Bayou Segnette State Park|
The Bayou is very pretty, with lots of wild flowers growing along it - wild Iris and I think the pink ones are Mexican Primrose.
There used to be 20 cabins along the Bayou, but Katrina took them all out, and all that's left are pilings.
|Remains of cabins after Katrina - Bayou Segnette State Park|
|Lafayette Cemetery Number 1 New Orleans|
|Wikipedia Commons - Venice after Katrina|
It's not hard to image the place flooding so badly when you see how close the water is to the road. This picture was taken from the truck, and the water comes pretty much right up to the highway.
|Shrimp boats at Venice, Louisiana|
This whole area is about fishing - sport fishing and shrimping - and OIL! The oil and gas companies are down here in force, with refineries, natural gas plants, storage facilities - you name it.
Bob got a great picture of a Spider Lily while we were on our way back to the campsite.
On Friday we took a hike in John Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve. We walked about two miles through some interesting swamp land with beautiful cypress trees.
|Jean Lafitte National Historic Park and Preserve|
This cypress must be hundreds of years old - a real giant!
On Saturday we took the drive down River Road to see the plantations. We decided to take a tour of Laura, a Creole sugar plantation dating back to 1804. Laura was owned by the French Duparc family. You can tell immediately that it's a Creole plantation because of its bright colors.
What made this tour so interesting to me was that the guide (who was a Creole, and whose family had also owned a plantation) placed a huge emphasis on how horrible slavery was. You got a feel for the suffering that the slaves must have gone through. This tiny cabin actually housed two extended families, one on each side - possibly as many as 16 people crammed into this small space.
Sunday arrived, and Bob and I headed out for the main event of our Louisiana stay - the New Orleans Jazz Festival. We were lucky to get perfect weather - partly cloudy and about 84 degrees with a nice breeze. If the sun had been out all day we would have really felt the heat, but the sun hid behind the clouds most of the day.
We saw some great acts as we walked around and visited the different tents. One of them was John Boutte who sings the theme song from HBO's show "Treme". There was lots of dancing going on around the Sheraton tent, featuring the Cajun band Fais Doo Doo.
We had a great time just roaming through the Fairgrounds.
I caught a parade going through the Fairgrounds:
At 5:15 the headliner, Eric Clapton came on, and blew the crowd away.
Here's a picture that I got from the Jazz Fest's Facebook page:
But here's all that we could see being so far back in the crowd:
What an outstanding performance. Even though I could only see him on the screens, it was still great hearing him. He's as good as ever, and hasn't lost anything.
It's been a great time in Louisiana, and I feel that we really got to see and do a lot while we were here. It's one of my favorite states to visit.