Features

  • Coyote Sentinel

    Coyotes

    Possibly the most adaptable animal in North America (raccoons might disagree), coyotes thrive almost anywhere—including shrub-steppe.

    Coyotes

  • Basalt Columns

    Geology

    Columbia NWR has a fascinating—and violent—geologic history. To truly know the refuge, you have to understand its past.

    Geology

  • Cedar Waxwings Kissing

    Photo Galleries

    Some incredible photographers have donated some incredible photographs. If you can't visit Columbia NWR, this is a great consolation prize.

    Photo Galleries

  • Washington Ground Squirrel Promo

    Washington Ground Squirrels

    Too cute by half, Washington ground squirrels unfortunately spend most of the year below ground. Too bad; you can never get enough of them.

    Washington Ground Squirrels

  • Rattlesnake Promo

    Rimrock Species

    Columbia NWR is blessed with an abundance of rock faces, cliffs and crevices—perfect habitat for many species.

    Rimrock Species

Of Interest

Baby, It’s Hot Outside

Black-tailed Jackrabbit

It surprises a lot of people that the “Evergreen State” of Washington is largely arid—and it gets hot, often into triple digits for long stretches. We can beat the heat by heading to air conditioning. However, the animals of Columbia NWR don't have that luxury. How do they cope?

Beating The Heat

New Trails

New Trails

We just turned the Marsh Unit 2 Trail into a loop. The new section brings you back to the parking area through some nice sagebrush and fantastic scenery. March 1 all trails will reopen; new interpretive panels on bats, floods and geology installed; and new trail linkages opened. Oh, and we're remodeling the office. We hope you’ll like it all.

Watching Wildlife

Watching Wildlife

Chickadee

Want to see more animals on your trip to Columbia National Wildlife Refuge? Ready to add to your birding "Life List?" Here are some wildlife viewing tips from the "experts."

Watching Wildlife

About the Complex

Mid-Columbia River Complex

Columbia National Wildlife Refuge is managed as part of the Mid-Columbia River Complex.

Read more about the complex
About the NWRS

National Wildlife Refuge System

NWRS Logo

The National Wildlife Refuge System, within the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, manages a national network of lands and waters set aside to conserve America's fish, wildlife, and plants.

Learn more about the NWRS