Catoosa WMA to reopen after roads, trails cleared

Catoosa Wildlife Management Area to reopen after roads, trails cleared

CROSSVILLE (WATE) - The Catoosa Wildlife Management Area, located in Cumberland, Morgan, and Fentress counties, will re-open to public access on Saturday.

Catoosa has been closed since Aug. 8, 2011 due to vandalism including nails, spikes and nail boards placed in secondary roads and fields.

The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency closed Catoosa due to public safety concerns. Throughout the 12-day closure, TWRA personnel have removed the materials.

TWRA Region III Wildlife Program Manager Kirk Miles says the re-opening comes earlier than the expected target date of Aug. 27. 

"The closure and the circumstances that led to the closure were unfortunate," said Miles. "The actions of these vandals negatively impacted a lot of recreational users of Catoosa and negatively impacted the local economies of surrounding counties. It will be a good feeling to see Catoosa reasonably safe and open again."

Visitors should be aware that some danger may still exist on Catoosa, particularly when traveling on secondary roads and trails, the TWRA said.

The earlier re-opening will allow Catoosa to be accessible to the public for Tennessee's Annual Free Hunting Day on Saturday, Aug. 27. That's when state residents may hunt without a license. It also coincides with the opening day of squirrel hunting season.

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