South Carolina Department of Natural Resources
James L. Mason WMA
Latitude: 33.623 Longitude:-82.129
Game Zone: 2
Property Type: WMA Other
Hours of Operation
1 hour before sunrise to 1 hour after sunset year-round except for legal hunting at night. Refer to current SCDNR Rules and Regulations for information on WMA and Game Zone 2 regulations. Major graveled roads are open seasonally to vehicular traffic from 1 March - 15 May and 1 September - 15 January. All roads are subject to opening and closing based on various factors such as weather, season, abuse/misuse, and overall road conditions. Please exercise caution, courtesy, and tread lightly.
Activities / Facilities
In 1989, James L. Mason bequeathed 1,999 acres to the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources (SCDNR) to be used in perpetuity for wildlife management and outdoor recreation. Mr. Mason and his wife are buried in the family cemetery located on the property.
Situated along the Savannah River in southern McCormick County, the Mason Tract is dominated by mature loblolly and shortleaf pine in the uplands, mixed pine-hardwood along lower hillsides and hardwoods along the creeks and river. While the topography is generally gently rolling, slopes in many locations are surprisingly steep. This topography provides a distinctive blend of coastal plain and montane scenery that is characteristic of the piedmont. Granite outcrops are scattered about and some of the boulder-lined creeks are reminiscent of mountain streams; while the occasional dwarf palmetto is suggestive of a Lowcountry floodplain. Approximately 18 acres of wildlife openings up to two acres in size are maintained across the property. A 20-acre natural impoundment as well as several small oxbow lakes and beaver ponds are located immediately adjacent to the Savannah River.
SCDNR works to manage native vegetation to provide a diverse wildlife habitat. Selective timber harvests and prescribed fire are the primary management tools utilized to improve habitat conditions. Although longleaf pine is now virtually non-existent in McCormick County, the Mason Tract lies along the outer fringe of the longleaf's expansive historic range. Sites that likely once harbored longleaf will be gradually restored to the native longleaf pine/ground cover ecosystem and maintained with frequent low-intensity prescribed fires.
The Mason Tract is in SCDNR's Wildlife Management Area (WMA) program. Refer to current SCDNR Rules and Regulations for information on WMA and Game Zone 2 regulations. Major graveled roads are open seasonally to automobile traffic. The road system will be continually developed as timber management activities progress across the property. All roads are subject to opening and closing based on factors such as weather, season, abuse/misuse and overall road conditions. Please exercise caution, courtesy and tread lightly while enjoying this property.