Facility Activities

Rappahannock River Valley National Wildlife Refuge welcomes visitors to participate in a variety of wildlife-dependent activities. These activities were determined to be legitimate and appropriate uses of the Refuge System in 1997, when the President of the United States signed the National Wildlife Refuge System Improvement Act into law.

Activities you can enjoy include wildlife observation, photography, hunting, fishing, environmental education, interpretation, hiking and paddling. Please note that not every unit offers all of these activities and some activities, like hunting, are only offered seasonally. See below for more information.

Wildlife watching is a popular activity at Rappahannock River Valley National Wildlife Refuge and available at all of our public access units. Visitors can find accessible wildlife observation platforms at the Port Royal, Hutchinson, and Wilna Units. 

Come practice your wildlife photography skills at Rappahannock River Valley! This activity is available at all of our public units. Visitors can find photography blinds at the Wilna Unit overlooking the pond and the Laurel Grove Unit overlooking Farnham Creek. The Wilna Unit blind can be...

Come catch a fish at Rappahannock River Valley NWR. Fishing is available year round at our Cat Point Creek, Hutchinson, Laurel Grove, and Wilna Units. State regulations are enforced and use of live minnows for bait and lead sinkers are prohibited. Bass are catch and release at refuge ponds...

Hunting at Rappahannock River Valley NWR includes white-tailed deer, coyote, turkey and small game. Hunting opportunities vary by unit. All state regulations apply. Hunters can acquire up to one archery, one muzzleloader and/or one shotgun permit during a 2-week, first-come first-served,...

The refuge hosts Go Wild, an annual festival to celebrate conservation, at the Hutchinson Unit. The event includes kids’ programs, nature walks, conservation exhibitors, free raffles, and much more.

The refuge offers its annual Kids...

The refuge is proud to have environmental education sites at the Wilna Pond Outdoor Classroom (Richmond County) and the Hutchinson tract (Essex County). Both areas feature classroom sites (pond/creek, grassland, woodland habitats), fully accessible fishing piers, and accessible trails....

Come experience nature on Rappahannock River Valley National Wildlife Refuge by hiking some family-friendly trails. With few hills, trails have relatively little elevation gain, offering easeful walks and wildlife viewing opportunity around ponds and creeks. Need help navigating? Currently our...

Canoe/Kayak launch is available at our Wilna, Hutchinson, Laurel Grove, and Cat Point Creek Units.