Hunt the Sandhills Game Land in Richmond County

October 1, 2010


If you enjoy hunting, but don’t have access to a private preserve, the Sandhills Game Land offers an excellent alternative. Stretching over 61,225 acres, it covers over one-third of the entire Richmond County area. The public range is open for in-season hunting on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays. The Sandhills Game Land is widely recognized to be one of the best examples of longleaf pine ecosystems in the entire country. The area has an excellent road system and offers visitors a type of solitude rarely found in other locations.

According to state hunting forecasts, the eastern counties (of which include the Sandhills Game Land) offer some of the highest deer harvest totals because the natural and local habitat is so suitable. And because much of the public land is less undisturbed, it offers excellent cutovers for hunters.

Deer hunting is currently in season in the eastern North Carolina sector (as defined by the NC Wildlife Resources Commission) through Jan. 1st, 2011; however the Sandhills Game Land deer season ends earlier—on December 11th. Gun hunting is the only option allowed this late into the season, as bow-and-arrow and muzzleloading seasons for deer have expired over the past month.

The Sandhills Game Lands are also known as an excellent area and opportunity to hunt fox squirrels. Though they are classified as small game quarry, the fox squirrel is a challenging prey to pursue. Their many different color phases include shades of red, orange, black and even a black and white mottled look—making such a catch a desired addition to any hunting trophy room. Fox squirrel season in the Sandhills Game Lands runs from October 18th through December 31st.

Keep in mind that all statewide hunting activities are governed by the North Carolina State Wildlife Commission. Their precise rules and regulations are designed to benefit both state wildlife and hunting enthusiasts. Those seeking clarification for any information, limits, restrictions, permits and hunting season dates per region should log onto:

Contact Information: The 61,225-acre Sandhills Game Lands are operated by the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission, Division of Wildlife Management, 1722 Mail Service Center, Raleigh, NC 27699-1722. Phone: (919) 733-7291.

Access: To reach the Scotland Lane section from the Richmond County town of Hoffman, NC at the intersection of US 1/SR 1475, drive south for two miles on US 1. Turn left on Old Lauren Hill Road (SR 1346), cross the railroad tracks, and drive approximately 1.5 miles. At the first main graded intersection, turn left on the unmarked dirt road and drive approximately .5 mile and park.  Scotland Lane is on the right side of the road.

Map: View a map of the area.

  • Bill Parsons

    Great article. Glad to see the natural resources in the county being recognized for their value and opportunity. We are fortunate to have high quality public lands close to home.

    I estimated the amount of state owned game lands in the Richmond County to be around 32,250 acres. Sandhills Game Lands is 61,000+ acres but that includes acreage in Scotland, Moore and Hoke Counties.

    Our Gun deer season always opens the second Saturday before Thanksgiving and runs through the third Saturday after Thanksgiving. See regulation digest for exceptions.

  • Richmond County Tourism Development Authority

    Thank you for your comment, Mr. Parsons!

    It is our goal to bring the proper level of recognition to all of Richmond County’s resources, both natural and man-made. As you are aware, both hunting and fishing opportunities within the county are abundant and it is important to us and all North Carolina citizens to be aware of all rules and regulations respective to each activity.

    Glad that you’re enjoying our posts,

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