Three hundred-acre Lake Lamar Bruce near Tupelo reopened in May after being restocked with bass and reworked to put more structure in the lake.
This lake will be fun to fish — especially during November, when hunting season opens and fewer people will be bass fishing.
The lake should have numbers of keeper-size bass, as well as some 4-pounders.
This lake is being groomed to be a trophy bass lake, and has a slot limit of 16 to 22 inches. Fish within that slot must be put back in the lake, and anglers only can keep one bass 22 inches or longer.
Mississippians can expect some lunker bass to come out of this lake in the future.
We’ll concentrate on fishing down the shoreline — some of it with riprap and stakes beds — and cover a lot of water. Deep water also will hold stake beds.
In November, our lakes start to turn over. Baitfish are moving out of the deep water into the shallow water, and the bass are following the bait fish that will congregate in the pockets along the riprap and shoreline cover.
Lake Lamar Bruce runs primarily north to northwest and south to southeast; the eastern side of the lake holds more pockets than the western side of the lake.
The prevailing weather pattern during November involves cold fronts coming from the north or northwest. So the east side of the lake should receive the most wind, have the choppiest water, and be the most oxygenated and coolest side of the lake.
The lake has two feeder creeks. The bigger creek comes in from the right arm, and the smaller creek comes in from the left arm — and small creek channels come into the lake where the lake splits.
So I’ll concentrate most of my fishing, especially to start with, in the pockets on the east side of the lake and expect to catch good numbers of bass in each pocket.
The Reel’N Shad
Two patterns will produce bass: fishing the Reel’N Shad in the very backs of and on the points of the pockets.
I like white and watermelon red colors, and I’ll be fishing a Pinnacle 7-foot medium-heavy rod with a Pinnacle 7.3:1 gear ratio reel and 15-pound-test White Peacock Fluorocarbon Line.
I’ll use a ¼-ounce jighead with a No. 2/0 hook that has a wire weed guard on it — the jighead and the hook that’s packaged with the Reel’N Shad.
I’ll cast toward the bank and close to any cover I see just off the bank, using a medium to a medium-fast retrieve.
With the weed guard, you can pull the Reel’N Shad over stumps and through stake beds.
With this rod, reel, line and lure combination, a novice fisherman can have a great day catching bass by just simply casting the lure out and reeling it back.
In Mississippi Lakes, November is the most-productive time to fish a buzz bait because water temperature will be cooling down.
Bass primarily will be feeding on shad when the water temperature either heats up or cools down near shore.
I’ll fish a solid-white, ¼-ounce buzz bait with a trailer hook. On that trailer hook, I’ll put a white, 3-inch Mann’s grub.
I’ll shorten the skirt on the buzzbait until it’s about 1½ to 2 inches from the head of the buzzbait: I want the head of my buzzbait to look like a small baitfish and the grub on my trailer to resemble a bigger bait fish chasing it.
Modifying your buzzbait like this causes the bass to be much more aggressive.
I’ll use the same rod and reel setup as with the Reel’N Shad, but I increase my line size from 15- to 20-pound fluorocarbon to fish the buzz bait in the pockets and along the banks.
The Reel’N Shad meets the Alabama Rig
You’ll find deeper water off the points, along the face of the dam and in the part of the lake where creek channels come close to the bank.
To fish these areas, I’ll still use the Reel’N Shad — but I’ll put five of them with ¼-ounce jigheads on an Alabama rig.
I’ll use a 6.4:1 Pinnacle reel on a 7 ½-foot medium-heavy rod with 26-pound fluorocarbon that has about the same diameter as 17-pound-test line.
My November strategy is to fish as much shoreline as possible in a day. I’ll start on the northeast side and fish all the way around the northeast side, casting to the banks and in the pockets.
Once I’ve fished every pocket on the east side of the lake, I’ll move to the lake’s west side and fish all the pockets there.
You can catch and release a lot of bass this month on Lake Lamar Bruce.