Hartwell Wildlife Management

The main objective of the Hartwell Project wildlife management program is to improve wildlife habitat through, accepted forestry and wildlife management practices consistent with the multiple use objectives of the lake project.  Another objective is to provide hunting opportunities at suitable locations. Wildlife viewing opportunities are also available on project lands. Wildlife management activities are coordinated with appropriate State agencies, and cooperative efforts with interested groups are also encouraged.

Currently, approximately 2500 acres of Hartwell Project land is leased to the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources (SCDNR) for wildlife management. Beaverdam Creek Wildlife Management Area, located in Townville, is a 900 acre waterfowl management area leased to SCDNR.  Waterfowl hunting is allowed in this area by drawing only.

Corps efforts to improve wildlife habitat and hunting success include the management of 27 wildlife openings around the project.  These wildlife openings are planted and maintained to improve habitat for deer and turkey as well as benefit small game and non-game species.  Four of these openings are managed as public dove fields.  Another tool the Corps uses to benefit wildlife is through pine thinning operations around the project.  Thinning practices along with the reforestation effort that includes planting hardwoods, promotes a healthy and diverse forest.  The Corps also maintains 40 wood duck and 78 blue bird boxes around the project to provide adequate nesting.

All Corps land, except for developed recreation areas, is open to hunting provided all state game laws are observed.  The Corps does manage some archery only areas available to the public.  In South Carolina there are four areas the Corps has designated as archery only.  These are SC River below the dam, Weldon Island (closed campground), Glenn Ferry (closed campground), and Choestoea.  In Georgia there are two areas the Corps has designated as archery only.  These are Georgia River/Quarry area and Paynes Creek Campground (after Sept 9th).  A complete set of Hunting Maps are available.  The SC River and Georgia River/Quarry area require a permit that is available from the Hartwell Project Office.  This permit is free and must be obtained in person.

There are numerous other small access areas that are open to archery hunting for deer, turkey & small game.  These areas include:

  • New Prospect Access Area in Hart County, GA (34 Acres)
  • Jenkins Ferry Access Area in Stephens County, GA (31 Acres)
  • Apple Island Access Area in Anderson County, SC (107 Acres)
  • Asbury Access Area in Anderson County, SC (27 Acres)
  • Denver Access Area in Anderson County, SC (19 Acres)
  • Townville Access Area in Anderson County, SC (23 Acres)
  • River Forks Access Area in Anderson County, SC (182 Acres) Note: Hunting is not permitted in the closed recreation area.
  • Camp Creek Access Area in Anderson County, SC (48 Acres)
  • Martin Creek Access Area in Oconee County, SC (60 Acres)

A permit is required from the Corps of Engineers, Hartwell Lake, to hunt in the SC River Area and Quarry Area and will be available at no cost from the Hartwell Project Office beginning in late August each year.

Hunting for deer and turkey will be permitted during seasons as set by the state and will be restricted Archery Equipment Only.  Firearms are prohibited during deer and turkey season.

Hunting in developed recreation areas except as listed above is prohibited.

No permanent stands can be constructed on Corps of Engineers property.  Climbing stands, lock-on stands, ladder stands and ground blinds can be used, but must be removed on the last day of deer and turkey season.

Small game hunting is allowed in all areas listed above, but only after the deer season is completed.  Hunting during small game season will be permitted with shotgun only using #4 shot or smaller.

South Carolina and Georgia regulations, seasons, bag limits, license requirements, etc. will be strictly enforced.

Feral Hog hunting is allowed on Hartwell Project Lands all year.  A special permit must be requested to hunt hogs outside the regular deer and turkey seasons.  The use of dogs is only allowed outside the state deer and turkey seasons.

Dove hunting is allowed Saturday and Wednesday only throughout the season as set be GA & SC’s Department of Natural Resources.

Please contact Jess Fleming at the Hartwell Project for questions and permitting.

Natural Resources Specialist Jess Fleming:  1-888-893-0678 ext. 335 or 706-856-0335.

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Hartwell Lake Listed Again Among Nation’s Top Fishing Spots

Hartwell Lake has once again been named as a Top 100 Bass Lake in America by B.A.S.S.. Hartwell Lake is ranked-twenty first in the Southeast Division, and has received this recognition for the third consecutive year since B.A.S.S. began releasing the rankings in 2012.

“It’s an honor and privilege to have Lake Hartwell recognized as a Top 100 Bass Lake in America by the great folks at B.A.S.S.,:” said Neil Paul, executive director of Visit Anderson. “Green Pond Landing and Lake Hartwell continues to serve as a destination for fishing tournament organizations from all across America.”

Hartwell Lake, Green Pond Landing & Event Center, and Anderson County have hosted numerous national and regional bass tournaments including: the Ray Scott Championship, FLW Pro Series, the American Bass Anglers Military Championship, and the 2015 GEICO Bassmaster Classic, where Casey Ashley won his first Classic on his home lake.

Anderson County and Visit Anderson are set to host two major tournaments in the year ahead at Green Pond Landing & Event Center. In the fall the 2017, the B.A.S.S. National Championship will be October 19-21; and, the 2018 GEICO Bassmaster Classic presented by DICK’S Sporting Goods is scheduled for March 16-18, 2018. Such tournaments make a meaningful contribution to tourism as well having a significant economic impact in Anderson County.

“Anderson County is focusing its efforts into our natural resources; particularly, Green Pond Landing & Event Center,” said Anderson County Council Chairman Tommy Dunn. “It is exciting to know that our beautiful lake is being enjoyed not only by our citizens, but by the international fishing community.”

Courtesy www.andersonobserver.com

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Corps of Engineers releases draft changes to drought plan, seeks public comments

Officials from the Corps of Engineers’ Savannah District released a draft report containing recommendations to improve management of water resources in the Savannah River during drought.

The study put together detailed information to determine “the amount of flow required during severe and prolonged drought.” Officials seek comments on the study and updated drought plan before determining the final course of action. Government agencies, industry, civic groups and individuals may submit comments through noon Eastern Time July 13, 2017.

The Corps, along with its study partners, the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources and The Nature Conservancy, examined six different alternatives to manage water during drought, comparing each to keeping the current plan. The recommended alternative, labeled “Alternative 2” achieves the most positive impacts and the least negative impacts to the water resources compared to each of the others.

Under the recommended alternative, drought trigger level 3 rises 6 feet bringing the most restrictive outflows into play much earlier in drought. In addition trigger level 1 would remain constant year-round as opposed to dipping in relation to the winter drawdown. This has the effect of possibly reducing outflows sooner than the current plan. Alternative 2 also keeps level 2 flat year-round reducing flows further, sooner than in the current plan.

The release of the draft report marks the second interim of the Savannah River Basin Comprehensive Study, which started in 2012. This study includes an environmental assessment of the alternatives. The recommended plan would update the Savannah District’s Drought Contingency Plan. The drought plan directs water managers and others on how to use and conserve resources when drought strikes the region.

The alternative recommended for adoption makes some significant changes to water management during drought.

“Of the six new alternatives studied, the group recommended one with the greatest benefit to the greatest number of purposes assigned to the three Savannah District reservoirs,” Nathan Dayan, the study’s Environmental Team Lead, said. “We examined impacts to the environment, economics, recreation, hydropower, water supply and water quality, and downstream navigation.”

“Both states worked alongside The Nature Conservancy and the Corps of Engineers to make this a true partnership in adding to our knowledge of the Savannah River Basin and in updating the drought contingency plan,” Dayan said.

The public can send comments about the draft report through noon Eastern Time July 13, 2017, to the Planning Division, Attn: Nathan Dayan by FAX to 912-652-5787, by emailing CESAS-PD@usace.army.mil, or by written comments to: Savannah District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Planning Branch, ATTN: Mr. Nathan Dayan (PD), 100 West Oglethorpe Avenue, Savannah, Georgia 31401-3640.

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