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There’s good news for those liking to fish on the Tennessee National Wildlife Refuge. A new boat launching ramp has just been opened on the impoundments at the Tie Yard area in Benton County adjacent to where the I-40 bridge crosses over the Tennessee River. For years anglers have had to use unimproved launching ramps on the impoundment.

In an effort to provide enhanced opportunities and a safer facility to the public, a new  15’ x 50’ ramp was constructed by refuge staff along with a large parking area on the south shore of the impoundment on the road leading to an area called Nix’s Landing.

With the exception of being temporarily closed due to flooding, the Nix’s Landing boat launching ramp will be seasonally open from March 16th through October 31st. The Morgan Creek boat launching ramp, another refuge boat ramp located immediately south of the area provides access to the Tennessee River year round.

To get to the new Nix’s Landing refuge boat launching ramp you will need to take I-40 exit 133 south onto Birdsong Road. At just over one mile, turn left onto Marina Ridge Road and continue until the road turns into gravel. To get to Morgan Creek boat launching ramp continue straight on the gravel road and it will dead end at the launching ramp. To get to Nix’s Landing boat launching ramp turn left onto the first gravel road and continue 1 ¾ mile. Turn onto the first gravel road to the right, which will to the boat launching ramp and parking lot just before the old Nix’s Landing.

This new launching ramp did not come without quite an effort from refuge staff. Originally the launching ramp was scheduled to open this spring. However, with an unusually wet spring, the area flooded six times causing numerous delays on its construction. We appreciate the public’s patience and hope they will consider this nice new ramp well worth the wait. Since its opening last week, initial reaction from anglers to the new boat launching ramp has been quite positive. Should you need any more information concerning boat launching ramps or fishing on the refuge please contact Ranger Joan Stevens at 731-642-2091 x17.

Tennessee National Wildlife Refuge is one of 538 refuges in the National Wildlife Refuge System that includes 95 million acres managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. The National Wildlife Refuge System is dedicated entirely to the conservation of wildlife. Charged with protecting birds, fish and other animals, plants and the habitats they need to survive, America’s wildlife refuges are among the world’s great environmental success stories. These protected havens provide habitat for more than 700 species of birds, more than 200 species of fish and nearly 500 other animal species. Among the hundreds of wild species that call wildlife refuges home are 250 threatened and endangered plants and animals.

The National Wildlife Refuge System is nearing its centennial celebration, which will occur next year in 2003. Nationwide refuges will be pulling out the red carpet for the public to join us in our celebration.



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