Laws and Regulations

  •  Observe wildlife from a safe distance. Young animals should be left alone. 
  • Vehicles and bicycles are limited to designated roads which can be identified by numbered markers at junctions. Off-road driving is prohibited. 
  • Pets are permitted if they are confined or on a leash. Dogs may only be off-leash when they are participating in quail and cottontail hunting. 
  • Help protect resources. All plants, wildlife, and cultural features on the refuge are protected and it is illegal to remove them. 
  • Recreational (noncommercial) rock or mineral collecting is restricted to the designated 1.5 square mile Crystal Hill Area. The use of tools, including metal detectors, in collecting rocks and minerals is forbidden. 
  • Camping is allowed on the refuge. However, campsites cannot be located within ¼ mile of water sources and vehicles must remain within 100 feet of the road.  
  • Campfires are permitted, but only dead, down and detached wood may be used. Dead wood may only be collected from areas on the refuge that are not designated as wilderness. Wood is very scarce; please consider bringing your own supply of firewood. 
  • No person who is intoxicated shall enter or remain upon the refuge. 
  • Seasonal hunting opportunities are offered and require licenses (for all types of hunting) and permits (for deer and desert bighorn sheep hunting). Hunters should be familiar with the refuge’s hunting regulations. 
  • Persons possessing, transporting, or carrying firearms on National Wildlife Refuges must comply with all provisions of state and local law. Persons may only use (discharge) firearms in accordance with refuge regulations. 
  • Unexploded ordinance may be encountered. Picking up items that appear to be military hardware could be hazardous to your health. Please report these items to the refuge, with GPS coordinates if possible, as soon as you are able by calling 928-783-7861. 
  • All vehicles must be registered. On National Wildlife Refuges, all vehicles, including all all-terrain cycles, dirt bikes, motorcycles, sand rails, “gators”, and “E-Z Go” golf carts must be registered, insured, and street legal, {50 CFR 27.31(f)}. All drivers must also have a state issued drivers’ license in good standing. In order for the vehicle to be registered it must have all safety equipment required by the State of Arizona, please go to Arizona Game and Fish for street legal operation information. A license plate beginning with “MC” is registered, while an “RV” plate is title only and may not be operated on any of the National Wildlife Refuges. This regulation provides for the safety of all visitors since everyone must share the designated roadways.  
  • Recreational livestock permitted on the refuge include horse, mules and burros. The use of feeding containers is required and water must be packed in. All waste must be removed from the refuge and all surface disturbances at campsites must be restored. Use of pelletized feed is highly recommended to reduce potential introduction of invasive species invasive species
    An invasive species is any plant or animal that has spread or been introduced into a new area where they are, or could, cause harm to the environment, economy, or human, animal, or plant health. Their unwelcome presence can destroy ecosystems and cost millions of dollars.

    Learn more about invasive species
    . Livestock may not be tethered directly to trees or other vegetation.