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Rules and Regulations

RegulationsThere are lots of fun, interesting, and educational things you can do on the Monument. Keep in mind, if an activity is not wildlife-related and doesn't help in the protection or understanding of wildlife or their habitat, there are probably rules governing this activity. Please check with the FWS before participating in an activity that could harm the environment or yourself. There are plenty of legal activities on the Hanford Reach National Monument for you to enjoy. Be safe and have fun!

We want to you come and enjoy the Monument, but we do have some rules—rules designed to protect wildlife, the fragile habitats, cultural resources, and other visitor's experiences.

Bicycles: 

  • Bicycles, including mountain bikes, are considered vehicles by federal statute and follow the same posted restrictions.
  • Off-road use is strictly prohibited; bicycles are not allowed on trails or to travel cross-country.
  • Bicycles are allowed on the paved road between the locked gates at Ringold and the White Bluffs Overlook.
  • Bicycles are also allowed to travel from the parking lot for the WB-10 Ponds to the ponds on the existing road only.

Collecting: 

  • All collecting is prohibited, including antlers, bones, rocks, artifacts and plant life.
  • Disturbing plant life and all digging are prohibited.

Firearms: 

  • Per Department of Energy regulations, only those firearms used for that particular hunting season are allowed. Handguns, modern rifles, airguns (e.g., BB and pellet guns), etc., are not allowed anywhere on the Monument at any time. During hunting season, those that are allowed must be cased and/or dismantled when not in use.

Fires: 

  • Open fires (camping or cooking) are not permitted on the Monument at any time.
  • There are usually seasonal restrictions put in place each year. Please check www.fws.gov/mcriver/regulations.html in the spring and summer.

Fishing: 

  • Please consult the Washington State fishing pamphlet for limits, seasons, and other information.
  • Fishing is allowed only on the River, Ringold and Wahluke (East) Units.

Hiking: 

  • Hiking is allowed on all roads in open areas of the Monument.
  • Hiking cross-country is allowed only on the Wahluke and Ringold Units.

Horseback Riding: 

  • Horseback riding is allowed only on the Wahluke Unit and only on roads.

Islands: 

  • The federally owned islands are closed to public access above the ordinary high water mark.
  • None of the Monument islands are open to big game hunting. Waterfowl hunting is only allowed below the ordinary high water mark and only those islands downstream of the wooden powerline crossing north of the Ringold area.

Motorized Vehicles: 

  • Motorized vehicles are allowed only on roads open to public travel.

Paragliding: 

  • Hang-gliding and paragliding are prohibited, as are remote-controlled model airplanes.

Hunting: 

  • Waterfowl (duck, goose and coot), dove, snipe, deer, elk and upland gamebird hunting are permitted on the refuge during the regular Washington hunting seasons in specific public hunting areas designated on the refuge map.
  • Please consult the Washington State pamphlet for bag limits and general information.
  • The digging of waterfowl hunting pits, and the collecting/cutting of vegetation for camouflaging of waterfowl hunting pits, is prohibited.
  • Non-toxic shot is required for ALL bird hunting (upland and waterfowl) on the Monument.
  • No trapping of any kind is allowed on the Hanford Reach National Monument.
  • For the current regulations related to hunting on the Hanford Reach National Monument, please refer to the PDF below.
  • Hanford Reach National Monument Hunting Regulations
  • To see the regulations and hunting opportunities on all the refuges in the Mid-Columbia River NWR Complex, please visit:
  • Mid-Columbia River NWR Complex's Hunting Regulations

When in doubt, call us at (509) 546-8300, or email us at hanfordreach@fws.gov.

Last Updated: Mar 12, 2014
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