U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service logo A Unit of the National Wildlife Refuge System
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National Wildlife Refuge

The Illinois River meanders slowly through the valley, surrounded by the distant mountain peaks of three mountain ranges.  Tall willows grow in the moist soil along the river.
953 Jackson County Road #32
Walden, CO   80480 - 0457
E-mail: arapaho@fws.gov
Phone Number: 970-723-8202
Visit the Refuge's Web Site:
Meandering streams, streamside willows, and meadow habitats found at Arapaho National Wildlife Refuge create excellent wildlife habitat.
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Arapaho National Wildlife Refuge

Arapaho National Wildlife Refuge (NWR), situated at an elevation of 8,200 feet, is located in an intermountain glacial basin in north-central Colorado. The Refuge offers several ways to enjoy the area, including activities such as fishing, hunting, wildlife observation, and photography.

Getting There . . .
To reach the Refuge visitor center and headquarters, travel 8 miles south of Walden, Colorado, on Highway 125, turn east off the highway on County Road 32 and travel 1 mile. The auto tour route is 4 miles south of Walden, Colorado, on Highway 125. Turn west off the highway to begin the tour.

Get Google map and directions to this refuge/WMD from a specified address:

Your full starting address AND town and state OR zip code

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NOTE: When using this feature, you will be leaving the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service domain. We do not control the content or policies of the site you are about to visit. You should always check site policies before providing personal information or reusing content.

These driving directions are provided as a general guide only. No representation is made or warranty given as to their content, road conditions or route usability or expeditiousness. User assumes all risk of use.

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Wildlife and Habitat

The Refuge's 24,804 acres support diverse wildlife habitats, including sagebrush-grassland uplands, grassland meadows, willow riparian areas, and wetlands.

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The Refuge was established in 1967 primarily to provide suitable nesting and rearing habitat for migratory birds. It was created in part to offset the loss of nesting habitats in the prairie wetland region of the Midwest.

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    Recreation and Education Opportunities
Environmental Education
Wildlife Observation
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Management Activities
Refuge management centers around creating and maintaining habitat for migratory birds, with an emphasis on waterfowl. Numerous wetlands have been developed or enhanced on the Refuge. Water is diverted from the Illinois River and directed through a complex system of ditches to irrigate meadows and fill the wetlands. The water is then used to provide breeding, nesting, and brood rearing habitat for birds.

Grassland and upland management tools such as grazing, rest, prescribed burning, and noxious weed controls are used to promote habitat health. Rehabilitation of the willow community in the riparian habitat for the benefit of Neotropical songbirds has been a management focus in the past several years. Also, biological studies such as waterfowl nest dragging, Neotropical bird banding, and various other wildlife and habitat surveys support Refuge management programs.