Visitor Activities

Desert Trail / Jenny and Oliver Davis ©

Come out and enjoy Cibola National Wildlife Refuge!


Wildlife Watching and Nature Trails
Canada Goose Drive (3 miles)
The auto loop provides an excellent opportunity for wildlife viewing and photography during the winter. Visitors should remain in their cars to avoid disturbing wildlife. The amount of time spent circling the loop depends on the individual(s).

Nature Trail (1 mile)
The accessible walking trail provides viewing benches and an observation deck that faces a loafing pond utilized by waterfowl and other birds. On this trail, you might see song birds, bobcats, quail, and mule deer.

Cibola Lake
Birdwatchers may want to drive to Cibola Lake on the eastern levee road, where it overlooks the Lake and provides an opportunity to see great blue herons, pelicans, waterfowl, and other birds.

Hart Mine Marsh
This area is open from 10am-3pm during winter season and is a beautiful, quiet area where birds such as the endangered Yuma clapper rail reside. Wildlife watchers should remain in their cars to avoid disturbing wildlife, not to mention vehicles make the best blinds.

Anglers can fish for the following species: largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, striped bass, channel catfish, flathead catfish, crappie, sunfish, tilapia, and common carp. Possession of the Colorado River fishing stamp allows licensed anglers of either California or Arizona to fish any open area on the refuge. Cibola Lake and adjoining lands are closed to all activities between October 1 to March 15 in order to provide a safe and undisturbed area for the wintering waterfowl. Fishing, however, is permitted in a boat on the main channel of the Colorado River and all land and water to the west.

See the Fishing and Boating brochure for more information, including areas open to fishing.


2020-2021 Hunt Regulations are now published!

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service expanded hunting and sport fishing opportunities on national wildlife refuges for the 2020-2021 season. Hunting and sport fishing opportunities are authorized and provided on FWS-managed lands in accordance with federal, state, and tribal (where applicable) regulations and seasons. 

The FWS carried out a public review and comment period process on these proposed openings and expansions prior to the 2020-2021 hunting and sport fishing season. The final documents are available at the following website: 

For questions on hunting or sport fishing opportunities, regulations, and access, please contact the refuge. 

Public hunting on Cibola National Wildlife Refuge is permitted in specified areas. Hunting opportunities are available for the following species: Canada geese, snow geese, ducks, coots, gallinules, Gambel's quail, mourning, white-winged, and Eurasian collared doves, mule deer (bow, gun, muzzle loader), and cottontail rabbits. Hunting shall be conducted in accordance with all applicable state and federal regulations.

Find more information in the Refuge hunt leaflet, including areas open to hunting. 

Only Unit 2's managed waterfowl hunt requires a reservation. To participate in the lottery, hunters must submit an application to the refuge office by mail, postmarked by November 1.  The application form, 3-2355 (Waterfowl Lottery Application) can be downloaded from the internet at: There is no application fee, but ensure application information is correct and legible.  Mail applications to:

Cibola NWR, Attn: Hunt Drawing, 66600 Cibola Lake Road, Cibola, AZ 85328.