Last Updated on February 15, 2023 by Brian Grossman
Cohutta WMA is a 96,503-acre public hunting area located in the Chattahoochee National Forest in northwest Georgia, spanning across parts of Murray, Fannin, and Gilmer counties. The property is owned by the U.S. Forest Service, but managed by the Georgia Department of Natural Resources as a wildlife management area.
The WMA consists of rugged forested terrain comprised of mixed, mature hardwoods and pines with scattered pockets of dense mountain laurel. There are numerous small openings scattered around the WMA.
Timber harvest has been almost non-existent on Cohutta WMA for decades. That limited timber harvest, combined with increased predators such as coyotes and bears, has led to a serious decline in deer populations and some of the toughest deer hunting in the state.
In addition to numerous hunting opportunities that we outline below, Cohutta WMA offers fishing, hiking, birdwatching, primitive camping, horseback riding, and target shooting opportunities to anyone with a hunting license, fishing license or public lands pass.
There are over 158 miles of trails open to the public within Cohutta WMA.
Cohutta WMA Hunting Opportunities
Even though Cohutta WMA is located within the Chattahoochee National Forest, it has its own specific hunting regulations and season dates. Hunting opportunities exist for a variety of game animals, including bear, deer, turkey, small game, and hogs.
Cohutta WMA 2022-2023 Hunting Season Dates
BEAR AND DEER HUNTING
Buck Only, Sep. 10 – Oct. 5, Oct. 10 – Nov. 29, Dec. 5 – Jan. 1, Sign-in
Buck Only, Oct. 6-9, Nov. 30 – Dec. 4, Bonus Deer
Aug. 15, 2022 – Feb. 28, 2023
Apr. 8 – May 15, 2023, Sign-in
May 16-31. Feral hogs may be hunted and taken with dogs. Dogs must be marked with hunter’s name and a valid telephone number; no night hunting; hogs must be killed immediately upon capture.
No ATV’s except on designated ATV trails.
Cohutta WMA Camping
In addition to hunting opportunities, Cohutta WMA includes 4 primitive camping areas that are available for free for anyone with a hunting license, fishing license or public lands pass. The campsites do not include any amenities like bathrooms, electric or running water, so come prepared.
Cohutta WMA Shooting Range
Another popular amenity at Cohutta WMA is its 100-yard gun range. Sumac Shooting Range is located at 3195 Old Highway 2 in East Cisco. It’s open daily from sunrise until sunset except Tuesdays when it is closed until 12 p.m. for clean-up. This is an unmanned shooting range.
There is a daily $5 or annual $25 fee per person to use the shooting range.
Cohutta WMA Fishing Opportunities
Fishing opportunities exist at numerous streams and two lakes on Cohutta WMA. Lake Conasauga, located within the wildlife management area, features a boat ramp and campgroun. Murray’s Lake is also located within the WMA, but doesn’t have any amenities.
Directions to Cohutta WMA
From Ellijay to Holly Creek Check Station: Take Hwy 52 west 9.2 miles; turn right at Conasauga Lake sign; go 3.5 miles; turn right on USFS road #68; go 2 miles to check station.
From Chatsworth to Holly Creek Check Station: Take US Hwy 411 north to Eton; turn right at traffic light and follow Holly Creek Rd 11.6 miles to check station.
From Cisco to West Cowpen Check Station: Take GA Hwy 2; go 3 miles east to junction with West Cowpen Rd; check station at junction.
Check Station Address:
Cohutta East (Holly Creek)
2142 Old CCC Camp Road
Chatsworth, GA 30705
Cohutta West (West Cowpen)
3195 Old Highway 2
East Cisco, GA 30708
Office phone number: 706-295-6041
GPS Coordinates: N 34.89606, W -84.6172