South Mississippi's tiny Leaf Wilderness lies almost entirely on the floodplain of the east-flowing Leaf River, just north of Black Creek Wilderness. Except for a little western upland, the entire Wilderness consists of meandering sloughs, oxbow lakes, and level terrain of spruce-pine forest or oak-gum-cypress river bottom. Loblolly and shortleaf pines shade the upland, with a dense understory of dogwood, redbud, persimmon, blueberries, and honeysuckle. The only threatening shrub is poison oak, which always seems to find a way to make contact with exposed skin. The 1.5 mile Leaf Trail, one of two main attractions in the area, crosses the Wilderness and three bridges and a boardwalk to access this piece of Mississippi, where camping is unrestricted. The other attraction is wildlife, including white-tailed deer and wild turkeys, which bring in hunters during the fall months.
Leave No Trace
How to follow the seven standard Leave No Trace principles differs in different parts of the country (desert vs. Rocky Mountains). Click on any of the principles listed below to learn more about how they apply in the Leaf Wilderness.
Digital and paper maps are critical tools for wilderness visitors. Online maps can help you plan and prepare for your visit ahead of time. You can also carry digital maps with you on your GPS unit or other handheld GPS device. Having a paper map with you in the backcountry, as well as solid orienteering skills, however, ensures that you can still route-find in the event that your electronic device fails.
Motorized equipment and equipment used for mechanical transport is generally prohibited in all wilderness areas.
This includes the use of motor vehicles, motorboats, motorized equipment, bicycles, hang gliders, wagons, carts, portage wheels, and the landing of aircraft including helicopters.