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Lake Bruin is what is referred to as an oxbow lake, one of the many lakes created when the Mississippi River changed course in prehistoric times.  The Mississippi River is a meandering river, which means it wiggles like a snake across the country side as its dynamic forces eat away at its banks.

When the Mississippi River makes what are referred to as hairpin curves, the river elects to shorten its course to the see and cuts through the narrow neck, leaving a slack-water oxbow lake in the process.

Overtime, the sediment builds up along the river bank and the former channel of the river is cutoff from the river, except at high stages.

Similar oxbow lakes in this region are Eagle Lake in Mississippi and Lake Providence about an hour north of Lake Bruin.

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