Wild places beyond the city provide an escape from the daily grind, and North Dakota happens to be especially wild - they have over 60 wildlife refuges. Among these wild places to enjoy is the Audubon National Wildlife Refuge, which is within easy driving range from Bismarck and Minot. THis is the beauty of North Dakota's Wildlife Refuges - with so many, you can explore a new region on each trip.
The Audubon National Wildlife Refuge has a wonderful Office and Visitor Center that is located 3 miles north of Coleharbor, North Dakota, on U.S. Highway 83 and 1 mile east of the highway. It features exhibits on the prairie wetland and grassland habitats. It's a great place to stop to learn about the regions migratory birds, night life in the Refuge, as well as discover more about John James Audubon, and Refuge history.
Want to learn about going Green? You can do so at the Visitor Center that has a Green Building Tour. Learn what makes the building Green on a self-guided tour that reveals how they earned their earned the LEED gold certification (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design). From the standards for energy conservation, on-site renewable energy production, water efficiency, the use of recycled materials, and indoor environmental quality and control, this tour offers a engaging view of what is means to be Green.
While there you can also visit the Prairie Pond Store for wildlife-related educational materials, souvenirs, and for informmation on upcoming programs. The Visitor Center is open Monday through Friday from 8:00 am to 4:30 pm year-round, except Federal holidays. And, this is a great place to ask about the best place and times to view the local wildlife as well as taking the South Shore Auto Tour Route.
If you have time, a cruise along the South Shore Auto Tour Route is ideal for viewing the lake, prairie wetlands, grasslands. It starts not far from the Visitor Center, so it's easy to find, and you'll have time to get ready to take some nice photo's of many species of mammals, birds, and plants you'll find along the route. For bird lovers, plan your visit during the spring or fall to catch amazing views of the migrating birds on Lake Audubon and other wetlands.
There's also the 1-mile Prairie Nature Trail to explore that leds you through the grasslands and along wetlands. And, Lake Audubon is popular for fishing, if you're interested in catching some walleye, perch, and northern pike, which arre among the popular game caught at the lake. Or, try your hand at Ice Fishing, or learn more about the available Hunting Seasons from the guides at the Visitor Center. Whatever time of the year you visit the Audubon National Wildlife Refuge you'll find nature offers unexpected surprises and memorable moments to share with family and friends.
Plan Your Trip To North Dakota
To learn about upcoming programs, find brochures and more news on the Audubon National Wildlife Refuge visit their website.
Use this link to download the Audubon Wildlife List (PDF).
Visit the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service website to view a listing of North Dakota's Wildlife Refuges.
By Melody Schubert