Visitor Activities

Park Picnic, 512x219, USFWS

Lake Ilo Park provides visitors with daytime facilities including tables, charcoal grills, litter receptacles, and a rest room. Visitors will find Refuge information and brochures such as wildlife lists, archaeological information, and visitor guides displayed and available at the park and Refuge Headquarter kiosks.

  • Nature Trail

    The North Shore Nature Trail is 1 mile in length and begins in Lake Ilo Park, winding along the north shore of Lake Ilo. Interpretive signs and benches are available for visitors along the way.  

    Two interpretive and educational displays provide opportunities to learn about key features of the Refuge. An archeological display containing a reconstructed stone tipi ring and interpretive panels is located near the trailhead, and information about the history of the Lake Ilo Dam, along with a dedication stone, is located near the spillway of the dam.   

  • Wildlife Observation and Photography

    Visitors can enjoy peaceful moments observing or photographing wildlife in the grasslands, wetlands, and along the nature trail in the Lake Ilo Park. Since the establishment of the Refuge in 1939, there have been 227 bird, 36 mammal, 6 reptile, 3 amphibian, and 11 fish species observed. 

    Early mornings and evenings offer the best wildlife viewing times, and spring and fall migration are peak times to observe and photograph many species and concentrations of birds. A wildlife list is available to provide information on species found on the Refuge.

  • Fishing

    Portions of the lake are open for fishing from the shorelines or from boats, and for winter ice fishing in accordance with State and Refuge regulations. An accessible fishing pier is located at the Park and the boat ramp is immediately west of the Park on the north shore. Northern pike, perch, and bluegill are popular game fish in Lake Ilo.

    Learn More 

  • Interpretation

    An archeological display containing a reconstructed stone tipi ring and interpretive panels are located near the nature trailhead.  

    Learn More  

    The Lake Ilo Dam is a prominent and important feature of the Refuge. An overlook parking area is located on the hill at the north end of the structure. An informative display on the dams history, along with a dedication stone, are located near the spillway.   

    Learn More