An image of two hunters in camo walking through water.

The 1,800-acre lake and its surroundings, now conserved as Mathews Brake National Wildlife Refuge, have a storied history as a waterfowl hunting area. Prior to becoming a refuge, the area was divided among private duck hunting clubs. Now, hunters can enjoy excellent public hunting during a fall/winter general access hunt. Limited draw hunts on weekends of the waterfowl season allow for quality hunting experiences. All access is by boat from a convenient parking area and paved boat ramp. Hunters should see high numbers of birds, whether hunting open water or flooded timber. The refuge is gaining a national reputation as a prime waterfowling destination. In a typical year, hunters from a dozen or more states come to sample the excellent opportunities on the refuge.

Please refer to current Refuge regulations and map for additional information. A Current Public Use Permit is required for access if you are participating in consumptive use such as but not limited to, hunting and angling. Click here to purchase or obtain your permit. For help with log-in or creating your account for purchasing or obtaining an annual public use permit please watch the video instructions.