Get a little closer to wildlife.
Reserve the photo blind for a chance to get a great photograph!

Pixley NWR photo blind will be available starting October 1st through reservations only. The photo blind will give visitors the opportunity to get a little closer to wildlife for observation and photography.

From late August-April, Pixley NWR provides great opportunities to photograph various waterfowl and migratory species along the existing foot trail. There is an observation platform at the end of the foot trail with a spotting scope that allows visitors to see further into the wetlands. 

There is only one photo blind at Pixley NWR and will only be available by reservation from October-March. Please read the reservation process for the photo blind use:


The blind will be available from October 1st-March 31st. However, during waterfowl hunting season the blind may only be reserved on Mondays and Thursdays. A calendar will be updated weekly on the Refuge website with the available dates (click on the following link for the 2018-2019 Photo Blind Calendar).

Process for Requesting a Blind

Photographers may receive up to 5 photography blind days in a season. Each blind assignment is actually for two days Monday, Thursday, and Saturday after the first weekend of February. For example, if circumstances change and a photographer cannot be present on an assigned date (weather, etc.), he/she has the option to change to another day within their assigned week.

First come, First served

Photographers may apply through a first-come, first-serve system. To apply for a date, photographers must email or call at 661-725-2767 ex.208 and have a Pixley Photo Blind Reservation Form with their date choice(s). Photographers' names will be put on a list and processed chronologically by the e-mail date/time or voicemail date/time. All applicants given a blind assignment will be notified by email or telephone during early to mid-September.

Waiting list

A waiting list will be created if additional users would like to use the blind and no dates are available. When a user cancels their reservation staff will work through the waiting list to try to fill the opening. Waiting list users will have up to 24 hours to respond back to the Complex. If no response is received within 24 hours, staff will move down the list. Wait list max is 5 people.


There is no fee for the use of the photography blind. There is no commercial photography done at the refuge whatsoever. 


On the photography day, photographers will find a 'Photography Blind Folder" inside the blind. The folder will contain a Photography Blind Report form, blind rules, and other important information. Please fill out the appropriate forms and leave the folder in the blind when you leave.

Proceed to Blind

Photographers are able to go in the blind as early as 1 hour before sunrise and must be out of the blind and off refuge by 1 hour after sunset. Photographers must walk from the parking lot along the foot trail. Red reflectors will be put along the photography blind trail. A flashlight will be needed to follow the reflectors in the dark. There will be a combination lock on the blind door. The Refuge staff will provide you with the combination to the lock once your Reservation Form is complete. Photographers may leave the blind at any time, but once the blind has been vacated, returning to the blind is not permitted. Access to the blind and the surrounding area may flood; therefore, blind use depends on road and habitat conditions. If the access road is closed due to flooding, the photo blind will also be closed.

Weather Closure

Access to the blind and the surrounding area my flood; therefore, blind use depends on road and habitat conditions. If the access road is closed due to flooding, the photo blind will also be closed. During adverse weather, it is highly recommended that photographers call before their blind assignment date to check on the blind and road conditions. Refuge staff will contact users as soon as possible if there is a closure. Staff will try to provide the cancelled user a replacement opportunity if feasible.


Please click on the following link (Pixley Photo Blind Map) to download a map with directions to the photo blind.

Blind Use

The blind has adjustable camera size openings in three sides. The blind can also accommodate 2 people. Four adjustable shelves, which can be used for camera mounts, are present in the blind. There is one swivel chair available.


Photographers must check out of the blind by leaving the "Photography Blind Folder" with a completed report form in the photo blind. Please lock the door behind you using the combination lock. We ask that you clean up after yourself and not loose any slide inserts to the viewing windows.


If you will not be able to use the blind on your designated date, contact the refuge as soon as possible. This allows people on a waiting list to utilize the blind. 

Refuge reserves the right to revoke photography privilege

Anyone found to be in violation of any of the conditions in these guidelines or refuge regulations will have their photography privileges immediate revoked and will be asked to leave the area.         

Checklist of helpful items to bring to the blind:

Flashlight, warm clothes or layers, field guide(s), binoculars, insect repellent, snacks and water, sack for garbage, seat for a second person, tripod or bean bag camera rest.

Story Tags

Wildlife viewing

Recreational Activities