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

Off U.S. Hwy 1, about 3 miles south of
Castroville, CA   
E-mail: sfbaynwrc@fws.gov
Phone Number: 510-792-0222
Visit the Refuge's Web Site:
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Salinas River National Wildlife Refuge

Salinas River Refuge is located approximately 11 miles north of Monterey at the point where Salinas River empties into Monterey Bay. The refuge encompasses several habitat types including sand dunes, pickleweed salt marsh, river lagoon, riverine, and a saline pond.

The area provides habitat for several threatened and endangered species, including the California brown pelican, Smith's blue butterfly, the western snowy plover, the Monterey sand gilia, and the Monterey spineflower.

Salinas River Refuge is open to the public though there are no facilities beyond a parking lot and footpaths. Those willing to walk from the parking lot to the beach are rewarded with beautiful scenery and an excellent presentation of native dune vegetation.

Dogs, horseback riding, and camping are not permitted due to the sensitivity of the habitat. Please contact the Refuge for other restrictions.

Getting There . . .
From Monterey, California, go north on U.S. Highway 1 approximately 11 miles, to the Del Monte exit. Go left on Del Monte which becomes a dirt road. The dirt road ends in the refuge parking lot.

From Castroville, California: go south on U.S. Highway 1 approximately 3 miles to the Del Monte exit. Go right on Del Monte which becomes a dirt road. The dirt road ends in the refuge parking lot.

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

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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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Management Activities
Refuge management focuses on endangered species, waterfowl and shorebirds. Restoration efforts within the beach dunes include removal of non-native invasive plant species such as European dune grass and iceplant. Additional restoration is underway to reestablish riparian habitat along the Salinas River and native grasses in the upland areas.

Predator management, including the use of nest exclosures, is being conducted to reduce the impacts of non-native predators to the threatened western snowy plover that nests on the refuge beaches. Biological monitoring occurs for the western snowy plover, the threatened Monterey spineflower, the Caspian tern, and will soon begin (2006) for the endangered Smith's blue butterfly.