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TENNESSEE WILDLIFE VIEWING TRAIL » Middle Tennessee
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Old Hickory Lake - Lock 5 Refuge

Site Directions: Travel on Hwy 231 north from Lebanon and just after crossing the Cumberland River, there is an access road on the right (east side).
Access on east side of Hwy 231-
Lat-Long: 36.30374, -86.26255
North Dickerson Chapel Rd access-
Lat-Long: 36.30789, -86.23384
South Dickerson Chapel Rd access-
Lat-Long:
36.30298, -86.23336
Hours: daylight hours
Seasonality: Refuge is closed to all trespass from 15 November through the last day of February.
Fees: none

Site Description: Consists of tree-lined river and creek banks with cultivated fields that are subject to flooding in the winter. Main waterfowl area consists of five ponds totaling around 41 acres (1 acre, 1 acre, 7 acres, 12 acres, and 20 acres) on the north side of the Cumberland River at the Hunter's Point bridge. These ponds are planted in milo (millet if season is wet and planting is delayed) and flooded in the fall to provide a refuge for waterfowl in the winter. Some other areas have gates that can be closed to retain rainfall to provide other wet sites.

Gravel roads for driving and walking are available at these locations.

Wildlife to Watch: Waterfowl are abundant in winter with Mallards being the most common species. Mid-winter counts average >2000 individuals annually. American Coots are also very common in the area.

Please see Old Hickory WMA and Old Hickory Lake (Dam area and vicinity) site details pages for other locations in the area.

NOTE: Please refer to TWRA Hunting Guide about hunting seasons and public access dates. Access dates vary by site.


For more information:

Tennessee Ornithological Society - Important Birds Area web page

Birds of Old Hickory Lake from eBird submissions


Submit your data to eBird and help us add to the list of birds seen at this site


Be sure to check out our Safety Tips page for important information regarding viewing wildlife in these areas.