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The new Liberty Hill Wildlife Management Area in South Carolina is scheduled to open to the public for the first time on Tuesday.

The 8,000-acre game land is located on the border of Kershaw and Lancaster counties from Singleton Creek on Lake Wateree to the Cedar Creek Boat Access on the Catawba River. It has a shoreline of 17 miles.

Very hilly in places, the region is nicknamed “The Devil’s Backbone.” It is made up of land owned by the S.C. Department of Natural Resources and leased properties.

Liberty Hill holds good populations of deer and wild turkey, along with other wildlife, including bald eagles and quail.

Access is via S.C. Highway 97 to the Liberty Hill Post Office, then on Singleton Creek Road for 1/10th mile. Turn on to Wildlife Road and proceed 3 miles to the parking area, where there is an informational kiosk.

For additional information, including hunting season dates, log onto the website Observer News Services

Trout stocking resumes on N.C. streams

The N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission has resumed stocking some trout waters in the western mountain counties after confirmation that two hatcheries tested negative for whirling disease.

The disorder, which causes cartilage and skeletal tissue damage, was discovered recently in trout on the Watauga River. It causes affected fish to swim in a whirling motion and it can be fatal to juvenile trout.

The agency subsequently halted stocking of its Hatchery Supported waters on a temporary basis until hatcheries near Marion and Brevard could be checked. Both the Armstrong Creek and Setzer facilities were cleared.

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However, stockings will remain suspended on some streams due to drought conditions and concerns of high water temperature at those locations. ONS


▪  It took two fishing weighing an aggregate 86.6 pounds to win the inaugural Georgetown Wahoo Challenge on the South Carolina coast Saturday. The victor among 42 boats entered at Georgetown Landing Marina was Earl E Bird, owned by Earle Atkinson and skippered by Ed Keelin. Skipper/owner Jonathan Staton was second with 76 pounds. Laura Stokes took the lady angler award with a fish of 40.6 pounds and the youth leader was Walker Knowlton with a wahoo of 38.8. The single largest wahoo among 112 brought to the scales was a 47.2-pounder boated on Staton’s Hooked Soul.

▪  The 10,600-acre Crackerneck Wildlife Management Area in Aiken County, S.C. will be open to the public each Saturday during September. Deer hunters, especially, like to use these opportunities to scout in preparation for the upcoming season. The area formerly was known as the U.S. Department of Energy’s Savannah River site. Fishing, hiking and wildlife watching also will be permitted during each of the Saturdays. For maps, brochures and regulations, email [email protected].

Catches of the week

▪  Red drum of 55 and 46 inches in Pamlico Sound near Hatteras Village by John McManus of Lancaster, S.C., while fishing with guide Rom Whitaker IV on the Sound Bound.

▪  A 48-inch red drum near Hatteras Village by Christian Bulza and a 41-incher by Jared Bulza, both of Taylorsville, while fishing with guide Scott Caldwell on the Elizabeth Grace.

▪  A flounder of 6.19 pounds by Kayla Bruner to win the first Flatfish Roundup tournament at Southport.

▪  A blue marlin boated and released off Hatteras by Roy Harris of Frisco.

▪  A 5-pound, 31-inch smallmouth bass at Fontana Lake by local angler Carol Williams, her biggest ever. The fish struck a Bandit crankbait.

▪  A 5.3-pound flounder at Oak Island Pier by local fisherman Mike Lofler.

▪  A 61-pound cobia Sunday at Avalon Pier in Kill Devil Hills by teenager Jake Worthington of Camden, N.C.

▪  A “billfish slam” consisting of two blue marlin, a white marlin and a sailfish off Oregon Inlet by a party trolling Tuesday from the Pelican with skipper Arch Bracher.

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