Cross Creeks National Wildlife Refuge

Quick Facts

Cross Creeks National Wildlife Refuge


(931) 232-7477

Map Directions

Things To Do


Cross Creeks National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) is located four miles east of Dover, in Stewart County, Tennessee and approximately seventy-five miles northwest of Nashville, Tennessee. The refuge was established in 1962 as a result of mitigation proceedings with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers when portion of the Kentucky Woodlands NWR was inundated with the creation of the Lake Barkely Project. Its primary purpose is to provide feeding and resting habitat for migratory birds with an emphasis placed on providing habitat for wintering waterfowl. The refuge is listed in the Tennessee Wildlife Viewing Guide and is one of several officially designated wildlife observation areas in the state.

Map of Cross Creeks NWR

Latitude, Longitude: 36.474514, -87.734757



  • Boating

    Boating is allowed year round in Lake Barkley. Boating is allowed during daylight hours from March 16-November 14 in refuge impoundments and reservoirs. The refuge has seven launching ramps on the south side of the river and six on the north side.

  • Auto/Motorcycle

    A 10 mile, gravel wildlife drive begins at the visitor center and provides visitors a panoramic view of refuge impoundments and upland forested areas. The drive allows viewing of waterfowl, shorebirds, wading birds, raptors, neotropical migrant birds, deer and turkey. The drive is closed November 15 to March 15, but the view from the visitor center overlook can be more spectacular in winter, especially when thousands of ducks and geese are using the pools and agricultural fields.

  • Fishing

    Sport fishing is a popular activity especially in South Cross Creek and Elk Reservoirs and the Cumberland River. Crappie, largemouth bass, bluegill and catfish are the most sought after species.

  • Hiking

    The Rattlesnake Trail is a one-mile long foot trail that is open March 16 through November 14. The trail provides excellent oportunities for viewing spring wildflowers, migrant and resident songbirds, as well as other wildlife. Refuge bird lists and mammal/reptile/amphibian lists are available at the office or visitor center.

  • Hunting

    Portions of the refuge are open to fall hunting of squirrel, white-tailed deer with bow and arrow. Quota deer hunts require an application. Turkey hunting is also allowed during the spring and fall seasons. Permits and special regulations apply; contact refuge headquarters for specific information.


The entire refuge is open to the public for daylight use from March 16 through November 14. Best viewing times are spring and fall from November 15 through March 15, however, refuge roads are closed to the public during this time to minimize disturbance to wintering waterfowl and nesting bald eagles. During that time the visitor center offers wildlife exhibits and audiovisual programs. The visitor center is open Monday thru Friday from 7:00 AM to 3:30 PM.



Cross Creeks NWR is located 75 miles northwest of Nashville, TN. Take Interstate 24 appoximately 45 miles, then U.S. Highway 79 from Clarksville, TN to Dover, TN. In Dover, turn south on to TN Highway 49 and travel two miles. Turn left on Wildlife Road and follow the signs to the office/visitor center complex.

Phone Numbers


(931) 232-7477