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TWRA Implements New Permit Fee Structure for North Cumberland OHV Users


Important Update for all OHV operators in the North Cumberland, TN OHV Area.  

For the first time in a decade, the Tennessee Fish and Wildlife Commission has approved a license fee structure adjustment for the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency. The increase was one of five rule amendments made by the TFWC at its January meeting,  in Union City. Tennessee hunting and fishing licenses expire on Feb. 28, but the changes go into effect  July 1.  Now all OHV users in this are will need to purchase this High Impact Permit. 

Special Use Permits
High Impact Habitat Conservation Permits

These permits must be purchased for horseback riding, bicycling, and ORV use. Youths under age 13 and persons holding a valid annual or permanent hunting license with a valid permit to hunt on these areas are exempt. At least one occupant of an enclosed vehicle must possess the proper permit(s). No permit shall be required on certain roads/trails as designated.

Here is an overview of the new fee structure and enforced regions. 

Region I: Wolf River WMA
Region 2: Laurel Hill, Yanahli, Cheatham, Williamsport, Bear Hollow
Region 3: Bridgestone Firestone – Big Bottom Unit, Catoosa, Keyes-Harrison , Luper Mountain, Mt. Roosevelt, North Chickamauga Creek – Patton Unit, Pea Ridge , Skinner Mountain
Region 4: Forks of the River,NOTE: All interior trails closed to bicyclists. Will Skelton Greenway and Whaley Trail (formerly known as Bluff Trail) to the Burnett Creek Parking Area open to bicyclists. No High Impact Habitat Conservation Permit required for use of the Will Skelton Greenway/Whaley Trail.
North Cumberland, NOTE: No High Impact Habitat Conservation Permit required on Peabody Road from its junction of US Highway 25W to the Hatfield Knob Elk Viewing Tower. No High Impact Habitat Conservation Permit shall be required on US Highways and/or County maintained roads that traverse North Cumberland WMA.

Type Description Cost
035 Resident Annual Permit $74.00
036 Resident Daily Permit $15.50
037 Non-Resident Annual Permit $233.00
038 Non-Resident Daily Permit $37.50

- More info on permits at>

- See even more at:

For the insider scoop direct from one of our OHV4TN Representatives here is an article she published in the 

"A chat with TWRA's Chris Richardson"


I recently caught up with Chris Richardson, the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency's (TWRA) Special Assistant to the Director for Policy and Legislation. Many in the off-road community have wondered what the new "High Impact" permit will mean to their use of TWRA land, so I thought I would ask Chris a few questions that I have culled from the group. TWRA will be coming out with a FAQ public information sheet on the new changes in the very near future...but until we go.

With the new July 1 fee increases and additions, what do you see as the biggest changes? The biggest change will be that additional user groups (horseback riders and mountain bikers) will be asked to contribute for the use and benefit of Tennessee’s Wildlife Management Areas.

Can you explain the new "high impact" user fees? The new High Impact WMA Permit will be required of those individuals riding horses, OHV’s, and mountain bikes on designated WMA’s in TN. The High Impact Permit is modeled after and will replace the North Cumberland Permit, while applying to other activities on additional lands. It is not required for those individuals who are properly licensed and permitted to hunt or fish our WMA’s.

Will these apply to all TWRA public land holdings? No. The new permit will only apply on specified areas. Those areas will be limited to lands owned by TWRA where these activities are currently permitted. It will not apply on lands that TWRA leases from other agencies.

Will these "high impact" user fees be categorized? I am not sure that I understand this question. Of those individuals purchasing the permit, I do not believe that we will be able to track the specific activity they engage in.

Where do you see the greatest opportunities for "high impact" user groups in the future? For OHV riders, the legislation passed last year creating a study committee is exciting and TWRA looks forward to being part of that process. The TWRA will continue to manage and improve the North Cumberland WMA. Additionally, the TWRA is committed to continuing to find and provide more opportunities for all Tennesseans to enjoy the outdoor recreation that Tennessee has to offer.

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