Last week local and state officials met in Rome, Ga., to put the finishing touches on an agreement that will put about 18,000 acres of McLemore’s Cove in Walker County under state wildlife preservation. 

The state of Georgia is partnering with Walker County to purchase about 18,000 acres at the junction of Lookout and Pigeon mountains, an area known to locals as McLemore’s Cove.

Total cost of the purchase is about $12 million. The state threw in $6.5 million toward the purchase, with the county adding $2.3 million to the pot. Federal dollars made up much of the remaining $3 million needed for the purchase.

Every governor since Jimmy Carter has added land in the area to the state’s preservation holdings.