Very Limited Access

Due to high water and flooded roadways, access to Crescent Lake National Wildlife Refuge is currently limited to only Island Lake on the South Refuge boundary. All other roads and trails are closed to the Public including access to the Refuge Office and Visitor Contact Station. For your safety, please respect Road Closed signs. Please call the Refuge office for more information, 308-762-4893.

Items of Interest

Migratory Bird Day - May 11, 2019

150x118 long-billed curlew

Crescent Lake NWR invites you to tour the Prairie Ranch Community in Garden County. The Refuge Headquarters will be staffed from 6:00 AM to 2:00 PM on the 11th. You can see displays, bird carvings, and wildlife and sandhills photography in the visitor center. Bird and other wildlife activities are often the best around sunrise or sunset (5:33 AM and 7:59 PM on the 12th). Planning a start time from the highway increases viewing opportunities. Song birds often continue to sing until 9 AM. Restrooms are available at all hours and water during staffed hours. Click on the link below to download touring maps and the press release with map directions.

2019 Migratory Bird Day News Release and Maps (590KB PDF)

Office Hours

Crescent Lake National Wildlife Refuge's Office is open Monday - Friday from 8:00AM to 4:30PM except for Federal Holidays. The Refuge is open sunrise to sunset.

Federal Duck Stamp


Purchase of Federal Duck Stamps support the purchase or lease of wetlands within the National Wildlife Refuge System.

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The Refuge

Refuge's Vision

Crescent Lake National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) has been described as one of America's great wilderness refuges. The Refuge was established in the Nebraska Sandhills in 1931 as an area reserved and set apart to provide a refuge and breeding ground for birds and wild animals. Also described as a "sea of grass in a sea of grass", Crescent Lake NWR has a concentration of both native prairie and lush wetlands. Such vital habitat attracts a wide variety of native wildlife, particularly migratory birds, for visitors to enjoy. With careful management, our staff believes that Crescent Lake NWR can be enjoyed by many generations of visitors to come.

About the Complex

Crescent Lake/North Platte Complex

Crescent Lake National Wildlife Refuge is managed as part of the Crescent Lake/North Platte Complex.

Read more about the complex
About the NWRS

National Wildlife Refuge System


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