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Okhissa Lake

The Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) commissioned world-famous bass fisherman, Bill Dance, to help design Okhissa Lake's fish habitat from the initial 1999 planning phase for this reservoir. With this invitation, Okhissa Lake became Bill Dance's first "Signature Lake." Nestled in the Homochitto National Forest in southwest Mississippi, this lake's primary function was for fish habitat. Today, this secluded lake offers pleasure boating, swimming, and serves as an ideal venue for world class fishing.

The Bill Dance brand made this lake instantly popular among anglers who seek Bill Dance Signature Lakes. Okhissa Lake has over 34 miles of shoreline, and its deep waters are ideal for smallmouth bass. This species usually is not found this far south, as bass demand cooler waters. Since Okhissa is over 80-feet deep in some spots, this depth allows for cooler waters to support smallmouth bass habitat.


At least 500 man-made beds fill this lake for fish habitat, and seven hundred acres of the lake are designed strictly for fishing. Additionally, trees remain on the lake bottom, providing even more habitat for fish that seek deeper, cooler waters. Mississippi has stocked F1 hybrid bass in this lake, but any angler anxious to catch a bass here might conduct some online research first to learn tips from other anglers who know the lake. The cove layouts and bass migration patterns can be tricky for a first-timer who is unfamiliar with this lake. The lake also supports bream, crappie and catfish.


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    Okhissa Lake Mississippi Coordinates:
31.4307N -90.8409W
Map It:
Lake Type:
Surface Area:
1,100 acres
Maximum Depth:
80 ft
292 ft
Normal Water Clarity:
3-6 ft
Major City:


Although Okhissa Lake is a deep lake, the fish habitats can be dangerous at high speeds. Therefore, approximately 80 percent of the lake is "idle only," and park rangers are serious about "no wakes." The ski area for this lake is located in the lake's northern waters near the boat launch just south of Bude. The second boat launch is located on the western shore off Highway 98.


The only campground and recreation area in the Homochitto National Forest is located five miles west from Meadville. This campground contains 22 sites, including RV spaces. Other privately-owned campgrounds are located around the lake, and some cabins also are available. The Forest Service plans to build lakeside cabins and offer primitive camping near the lake in the future.

If you're seeking hotel rooms, Brookhaven is less than an hour's drive from the lake. That small town has several hotels located near the I-55 exit. McComb is a little larger than Brookhaven, and that town also is located along I-55. McComb is about 32 miles southeast via 98 to south I-55.

Review the Lake Resource Guide for additional lodging.


Okhissa Lake is situated in Franklin County near Meadville, the county seat. Other small towns located near the lake include Bude, about five miles north of the lake, and Smithville to the south. The closest major airport is located in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, which is 86 miles from Meadville. The Jackson-Evers International Airport is located in Jackson, Mississippi, which is located 93 miles from Meadville.

Fun times at Okhissa Lake  Okhissa Lake

Okhissa Lake  Okhissa Lake

Average Temperatures Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Avg. High  59 Avg. High  64 Avg. High  72 Avg. High  78 Avg. High  84 Avg. High  90 Avg. High  91 Avg. High  91 Avg. High  87 Avg. High  79 Avg. High  69 Avg. High  61
Avg. Low  36 Avg. Low  39 Avg. Low  46 Avg. Low  53 Avg. Low  62 Avg. Low  69 Avg. Low  71 Avg. Low  71 Avg. Low  65 Avg. Low  54 Avg. Low  45 Avg. Low  38