Frequently Asked Questions

Where is it? The refuge is located 17 miles south of Lake Havasu City AZ

When was it established? Bill Williams River National Wildlife Refuge was established by Executive Order 8647 on January 22, 1941.

How big is it? 6,105 acres

Why is it here? The refuge was originally established as a refuge and breeding ground for migratory birds and other wildlife.

Who was Bill Williams? The river that flows through the Bill Williams N.W.R. gets its name from William Sherley Williams, known as Old Bill Williams, a mountain man who traveled through much of Arizona in the early 1800s. Williams came west from St. Louis, serving as a missionary to Native Americans. He eventually gave up the life of a missionary and spent the rest of his life traveling the west as an expedition guide and trapper.

What can I do there? Visitors can enjoy wildlife-dependent activities, including:
  • Bird watching
  • Hiking
  • Kayaking/canoeing
  • Photography
  • Hunting

Are pets allowed? Pets are welcome but must be leashed.

Can I bring and release wildlife on the refuge? Releasing any animal (wildlife or unwanted pets) on the Bill Williams River National Wildlife Refuge is illegal and subject to a fine.