Open daily, dawn to dusk. Currently the automatic gate opens around 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
What to Bring
To enhance your visit, we recommend: water, sunscreen, hat, snacks, insect repellent, camera, field guides, binoculars, walking shoes, wear layers, and any other personal comfort items you may need. The trails and facilities are accessible, so mobility equipment such as strollers, walkers, and wheelchairs are welcome.
What NOT to Bring
Sorry, but dogs/pets must stay at home. Remember, this is a special habitat and we want to minimize disturbance to wildlife. Please see the Rules and Regulations page for more information.
Blue Heron Trails is located south of Sacramento, just outside of Elk Grove. From Sacramento, travel south on Interstate 5 and take the Hood Franklin Road exit. At the stop sign, turn right, heading west for about one mile. The entrance sign and turn lane will be on your left. Please note, the entrance gate is timed to open and close automatically just after sunrise and just before sunset.
Please note that directions from the internet are usually wrong! Please use the directions above.
Additional Important Tidbits (please read)
An accessible paved trail consists of a mile of loops around managed wetlands hosting various migrants such as hawks, shorebirds, Sandhill cranes and waterfowl. The best time of year to view migratory birds is October - May. Although young trees have been planted, there will be little shade as you walk, so please be prepared for being exposed to the sun. An accessible non-flush restroom is available at the parking lot. This is a great opportunity to get the family outdoors and learn something new about your wild neighbors at one of the several educational kiosks. Remember, the wildlife is sharing the refuge with us, so please respect their home and minimize disturbance. For more information on the best time of year to see different birds and wildlife, please see the Seasons of Wildlife page.
Refuge Programs and Brochures
For more information on other visitor programs, please checkout the Visitor Activites page or the Events Calendar.
Refuge Brochure 11.2 MB pdf
Refuge Bird List 11.7 MB pdf