The 4 mile Auto Tour Route is open daylight hours throughout the year. Closing times for the automated gate system are posted on the gates at the refuge entrance and on the Plan Your Visit page. Please allow sufficient time to safely drive the Auto Tour Route and exit the unit before the gate closes. Should you be locked in behind the gate, you may call the Ridgefield Police Department at 887-3556 or dial 911 non-emergency and a police unit will be dispatched to your location.
Auto Tour Route Map
Between October 1 and April 30, all visitors on the Auto Tour Route must remain in their vehicles. The large flocks of ducks, geese, and swan using the Refuge during this period become accustomed to seeing cars and will allow cars to pass by, or even stop, without taking flight. Your car becomes your personal mobile observation blind. When everyone follows this rule, the result is a high quality birding opportunity for all. During this time of year, you may exit your vehicle only at the Refuge entrance parking lot and at the observation blind parking lot.
Please be a courteous drive and obey posted speed limits . Also, use turnouts to stop and observe wildlife while allowing other vehicles to safely pass. From May 1 to September 30, large concentrations of wintering waterfowl have left the region. During this period, foot traffic is allowed on the Auto Tour Route.
Periodically, the refuge may be closed for scheduled maintenance or construction projects, or because weather conditions have created hazardous conditions. Look for updates on this website or Contact Us.