Visitor Activities

Fishing at Sunset

Wildlife observation, hiking, fishing, boating, horseback riding, bicycling and hunting are all permitted on the refuge.

  • Hunting

    Elk is only open to emergency hunting and is administered by the Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife. Visit ODFW Emergency Hunt. 

    Waterfowl and upland bird hunting are permitted in accordance with state and federal regulations. All dove hunting is only during the authorized mourning dove seasons. Open to fall turkey hunting October 12 to the end of the state season.  

    Access for hunting is from two parking lots off the Shaw Road on the east side of the refuge. The south end of the refuge is open to hunting; most of the refuge is closed to all access. Hunt days are Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday. For further questions regarding hunting at McKay Creek, contact our main office at (509) 546-8300. Additional information can be found on our Rules and Regulations page.

    There is a lottery for hunting on the opening day of the upland game bird season. The lottery opens in mid-August and closes the second week of September and can be found at

  • Fishing

    Fishing on the McKay Creek Reservoir can be quite good. Fishing is permitted between March 1 thorough September 30. While McKay Creek Reservoir supports rainbow trout, McKay’s shallow water marshes and wetlands are productive for warmwater fish, such as crappie, largemouth and smallmouth bass, sunfish, yellow perch and brown bullhead. Fishing is allowed as per Oregon State regulations, March 1 through September 30.

  • Boating

    Boating is allowed as per Oregon State and U.S. Coast Guard regulations, March 1 through September 30. For additional information visit Oregon Boater Information webpage.

  • Wildlife Viewing/Photography

    Wildlife observation and photography are encouraged. Please stay out of closed areas to minimize disturbance to plants and animals. Hiking is allowed in all areas open to the public.

  • Horseback Riding/Bicycling

    Horseback riding and bicycling are permitted on designated public access roads during the spring and summer season (March 1 through September 30).