County Road 11 Fall Tour: Lake Tom Bailey

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LAUDERDALE COUNTY, Miss. (WTOK) - Fall is one of the best times of the year to enjoy the outdoors and explore some of the beautiful places in our region.

We head to Lake Tom Bailey, a beautiful place for camping, picnicking and fishing. It's a 182-acre public lake managed by the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks. There are 22 camp sites, with electricity and water, in a great location not far off the interstate for travelers coming through Meridian.

"We've had them from all over the country traveling down I-20/59 and they'll see a sign or make a phone call and they'll stop
in for the night," said Britt Harris, MDWFP lake manager for central Mississippi. "We get a lot of compliments left in our honor box on how nice the place is."

Lake Tom Bailey also offers up some fantastic fishing, whether you want to bring your own boat or spend a leisurely afternoon on a pier or casting a line from the bank.

"We've got two piers that are handicap accessible. Fishing piers that you're welcome to come out. If you like to bank fish or if you don't have a boat, Tom Bailey has got plenty of bank fishing access along with those two piers," said Harris. "And we also have some earthen piers on the back side of the lake and on the front side as well for people to fish on."

The state record for a channel catfish came out of Lake Tom Bailey, a record that has stood since 1997.

"Fifty-one pounds and they still catch some pretty good size catfish now. But of course that was an exception to the rule, I think, for most places for lakes," Harris said.

Lake Tom Bailey in eastern Lauderdale County is alive with fall colors on some prime real estate right here in our on backyard. And with crappie season coming into its peak, it will probably be worth your while to check it out sooner than later.

Lake Tom Bailey is located on Highway 11, just eight miles east of Meridian. For more information, call 601-632-4679 or visit the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks website by clicking the attached link.