Bird Watching

Ellensburg offers a habitat for a variety of wildlife, including many bird species! Visit our area for your chance to encounter chukar, grouse, hawks, eagles, and songbirds. For more on bird watching, see A Birder’s Guide to Kittitas County, a guide for birders of all ages and interest levels!

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Colockum Wildlife Area

Ellensburg, WA. 98926
Colockum Wildlife Area covers an expanse of territory from sub-alpine and mixed forest at higher elevations to pine foothills, shrub-steppe ridge country and prairie bunchgrass closer to the Columbia River shore. The area is located north of Ellensburg and south of Wenatchee. The Colockum has a network of primative roads, in places suitable only for four-wheel drive vehicles or alternative transportation such as mountain bikes, horses, or foot travel.
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Columbia Basin Birding Locations

Ellensburg, WA. 98926
See bird varieties along the Columbia Basin in both Ellensburg and Vantage.
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L.T. Murray

Ellensburg, WA. 98926
The 54,070-acre L.T. Murray unit is about 15 miles west of Ellensburg. WDFW owns 39,305 acres, DNR owns 14,424 acres currently either leased to WDFW or under WDFW management and the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) owns 341 acres in the Taneum drainage. Lying in the rain shadow of the Cascade Mountains, the eastern end receives less than 16 inches of precipitation, but the westside gets up to 100 inches of snow. Elevations range from 2,000 to near 4,500 feet.
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Quilomene Wildlife Area

Parke Creek Rd. | Ellensburg, WA 98926
(509) 925-6746
Quilomene offers a habitat for a variety of wildlife including birds! Come here to see quail, chukar, grouse, hawks, eagles, and songbirds.
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Sun & Sage Loop

Ellensburg, WA. 98926
Under the watchful golden eyes of a live Great Horned Owl and Red-tailed Hawk, two species of bird regularly seen in South Central Washington, the fifth and newest route of the Great Washington State Birding Trail, the Sun and Sage Loop, was unveiled in the Cherberg Building on the state capitol campus Feb. 19th, 2009.
wenas-wildlife-area

Wenas Wildlife Area

Southwest of Ellensburg and Northwest of Selah
Along with the more popular trails, there are several lesser-known trails in this beautiful region that deserve some recognition, such as Black Canyon, Yakima Skyline, Hardy Canyon and Robinson Canyon- Ashley Canyon. These trails provide astonishing views, native plant-life and opportunities to see various wildlife. As these trails are less traveled, a hiker may have a more private experience with raw nature, but should be cautious of their surroundings. The use of a map is advised.
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Whiskey Dick Wildlife Area

Central Washington — Yakima
Bask in a wide variety of wildflowers — including a rare species of cactus, Simpson’s hedgehog, with its hot pink blossoms –chunks of petrified wood, and panoramic views of the Columbia Basin, under usually sunny, blue skies. You’ll need a good map for this one.

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