Facility Activities

Cypress Creek National Wildlife Refuge offers a wide variety of recreational opportunities to visitors, including fishing, hunting, environmental education, interpretation, boating, wildlife observation and birdwatching.

Archery demonstrations and lessons may be a part of local site programming. Some refuges and hatcheries permit bow-hunting with other hunting. This activity is typically limited. Check locally for how to apply.
From bald eagles to spoonbills, from condors to puffins, birds abound on national wildlife refuges. Refuges provide places for birds to nest, rest, feed and breed making them world-renown for their birding opportunities.
Boats provide the best way to see many refuges. Some refuges limit the use of motorboats to certain areas, subject to restrictions on engine size.
Many Fish and Wildlife Service sites make great destinations for flatwater canoeing or kayaking. Some sites have concessions that rent canoes or kayaks. Some sites offer scheduled paddle tours. See individual refuge websites for details.

The refuge has two boat ramps that provide access to an old channel of the Cache River. Predominant species include bluegill, largemouth bass, crappie and catfish. Refuge includes state, federal and private lands. Angler access is provided on refuge and state lands.

Take your pick of 2,100 miles of refreshing trails and boardwalks. Whether you want a short, easy walk or a challenging hike, you’re likely to find what you want. Some trails are paved and universally accessible. Some trails include displays on visual arts, local history and culture or environmental education.

Known by many as the “Illinois Bayou,” the area that encompasses Cypress Creek National Wildlife Refuge is one of the most significant natural areas in the state. It is home to waterfowl, deer, turkey, squirrel, rabbit and other game species. It includes a diversity of habitats: floodplain,...

Whether you wield a smartphone or a zoom lens, you’ll find photo-worthy subjects at national wildlife refuges and national fish hatcheries. Wildlife photography is a priority public use on national wildlife refuges, so you’ll find wildlife drives and blinds and overlooks to help you get the images you’re after.
Rangers lead wildlife walks, tours and educational programs at many sites. Events may focus on wildflowers or birds or on seasonal spectacles, such as elk bugling or sea turtle nesting. Some programs may be limited in size or require advance registration. See individual websites for details.
Removing shed antlers from refuges is generally illegal. An exception has been made for Wyoming's National Elk Refuge, where the local Jackson District Boy Scouts help refuge staff collect antlers for auction each year through a special use permit.
Many refuges champion wildlife viewing as a key recreational activity.