Land Acquisition to Increase Johns River Game Land by 2,500 Acres

  • 27 April 2018
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Land Acquisition to Increase Johns River Game Land by 2,500 Acres
Commission chairman John Coley with Duke Energy's Steve Jester and Commission executive director Gordon Myers.

RALEIGH, N.C. (April 27, 2018) —  The N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission has completed a land acquisition that will add 2,500 acres to the Johns River Game Land in Burke County. The land was purchased from Duke Energy on April 11.

“The Johns River land acquisition exemplifies the power of partnership by enabling the Commission to increase this game land by 66 percent,” said Gordon Myers, the Commission’s executive director. “This game land will provide lifetimes of access and opportunity for many of our constituents and it enables us to to conserve the abundance of habitat for multiple significant species.”

The acreage will adjoin the 3,887 acres currently known as the Johns River Game Land, which was originally purchased with funds provided by Duke Energy as part of the 2006 Catawba-Wateree Comprehensive Relicensing Agreement (CRA) and grants from the Clean Water and Natural Heritage Trust Funds. Following this latest acquisition, the game land will encompass 6,448 acres.

“This achievement is a testament to partnerships, perseverance and patience,” said Steve Jester, Duke Energy’s vice president of water strategy, hydro licensing and lake services. “The concept of preserving land in the Johns River Basin resulted from Duke Energy’s partnership and stakeholder-focused approach to the Catawba-Wateree Hydroelectric Project relicensing process spanning 2003 to 2006. In addition to that three-year period, continued efforts yielded the Upper Catawba Trails Agreement and associated purchase options in 2008. Today that collaboration during the years-long relicensing process is rewarded as we celebrate forever protecting these special lands for the people of North Carolina.”

Johns River Game Land provides opportunities for hunting, fishing and other recreational activities. Several access locations to the game land will be provided directly from N.C. Department of Transportation-maintained roads.

With more than 2 million acres of public game lands in North Carolina, outdoor enthusiasts have ample opportunity to experience hunting, fishing, hiking, birding, nature photography and more. For more information, visit

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Ryan Kennemur

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