Buffalo Springs WMA

Site Directions: Take 11W north out of Knoxville for 23.3 miles to Owl Hole Gap Rd.  This is the first road to the right past the Joppa School.  Travel 3.5 miles to Indian Ridge Road and turn Right.  Travel another 0.5 miles on Indian Ridge Road, the entrance to Buffalo Springs WMA is on the left side of Indian Ridge Road.

Another access from Knoxville is to drive east on I-40 until you reach Hwy 92.  Go north to Jefferson City (about 6-7 miles).  Continue on Hwy 92 until you go past Cherokee Dam (about 6 miles). Continue on Hwy 92 for about 1.5 miles until you come to Owl Hole Gap Rd on the left. Go left and travel 5-6 miles until you come to the WMA on your left.

Buffalo Springs Wildlife Management Area, 329 Wildlife Way, Rutledge, TN 37861

Lat: 36.206951 Long: -83.561863

Fish Hatchery - Lat: 36.21186°N Long: -83.56072°W

Owl Hole Gap Rd on SE side - Lat: 36.21186°N Long: -83.56072°W

Hours: During daylight hours, except for raccoon and opossum hunting

Seasonality: Open year-round. The Buffalo Creek Waterfalls parking area is open from one hour before sunrise to one hour after sunset. 

Fees: none


• Hunting 

• Wildlife Viewing

Grainger County,   342 ACRES 
TWRA Region 4 Office Phone: 423-587-7037

The waterfall parking area is closed one hour after sunset until one hour before sunrise except as authorized by the WMA manager

Use or possession of alcohol is prohibited in the waterfall area

Night-time use of all additional WMA access points is prohibited except for raccoon and opossum hunters and scheduled events

Big game, small game, trapping, and dog training are the same as statewide seasons, except as noted

Dove - Sept. Sept. 1, 2, 4, and the remainder of statewide seasons

Quail hunting is closed. Quail dog training only during the statewide quail season.

Site Description:   Buffalo Springs Wildlife Management Area is owned by the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency and is located near Rutledge in Grainger County, Tennessee.  The land was originally purchased in Grainger County to develop a C.C.C. Camp in 1935 with plans to create a game propagation program.

The facilities included quail and wild turkey hatcheries, a brooder building, and growing pens. By 1938 the facility was known as the Buffalo Springs Fish and Game Preserve, C.C.C. Co. 3465, Camp Lynn W. Hoskins.  Buffalo Springs is one of the oldest wildlife management areas within the state of Tennessee.

The 342 acre WMA is mostly wooded with mixed hardwood forests and early successional openings throughout the area.  Across Buffalo Springs WMA, visitors can find several areas consisting of early successional habitat.

Native warm-season grasses and wildflowers are common in open areas. The early successional habitat provides ample cover for wildlife.  The WMA is surrounded mostly by privately owned agricultural fields. 

Buffalo Creek is accessible for a stroll along the dirt road and is a pleasant place for a morning's birding or another outdoor outing.  There are no specific trails for hiking.

Wildlife to Watch: Common woodland birds are present in season, including Acadian Flycatcher (spring/summer), Louisiana Waterthrush (spring/summer), Eastern Tufted Titmouse, Carolina Chickadee, and Scarlet Tanager (spring/summer).

White-tailed deer and Wild Turkey may be seen.

Contact Information

Region 4 office: 423-587-7037
Toll Free: 1-800-332-0900
Email the office

Hunting Regulations Link
Rankin Map
Driving Directions
Buy a license link