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Trip Planner:   USA  /  Arizona  /  Yuma  /  Imperial National Wildlife Refuge

Imperial National Wildlife Refuge, Yuma

4.3
#1 of 7 in Wildlife in Yuma
Wildlife Area · Nature / Park
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The Imperial National Wildlife Refuge protects wildlife habitat along 30mi of the lower Colorado River in Arizona and California, including the last un-channeled section before the river enters Mexico. The Imperial Refuge Wilderness, a federally designated, 15056acre, wilderness area is protected within the refuge. It also surrounds the Picacho State Recreation Area. This section of the Colorado River is popular for boating, hiking, fishing, camping, exploring old mining camps and wildlife watching.
The river and its associated backwater lakes and wetlands are a green oasis, contrasting with the surrounding desert mountains. It is a refuge and breeding area for migratory birds and local desert wildlife.
Even though it is located in the Sonoran Desert, the Imperial National Wildlife Refuge is home to a mostly wetland environment. Wetland wildlife is most abundant in winter, when birds such as cinnamon teal and northern pintail use the refuge. During the summer months, permanent residents such as great egrets are abundant. The Colorado River plays a vital role in the lives of desert fauna. It is the only water source for many miles. Small animals such as the black-tailed jackrabbit and western whiptail lizard are plentiful. Desert bighorn sheep and mule deer also call the refuge home.
Before you head to Yuma, plan trip itinerary details with our user-friendly Yuma vacation planner, to make sure you see all that Yuma has to offer, including Imperial National Wildlife Refuge.
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Imperial National Wildlife Refuge reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating
TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
51 reviews
Google
4.6
TripAdvisor
  • Super hiking trails, bring lots of water and sunscreen. Lots to see if you enjoy peace and quiet, nature and geology! 
    Super hiking trails, bring lots of water and sunscreen. Lots to see if you enjoy peace and quiet, nature and geology!  more »
  • Great place to see Sand Hill Cranes flying over the Colorado River Be sure to visit at dusk to see thousands of Sand Hill Cranes 
    Great place to see Sand Hill Cranes flying over the Colorado River Be sure to visit at dusk to see thousands of Sand Hill Cranes  more »
Google
  • The visitor center wasn't open, but don't let that stop you from your visit. If you have a decent vehicle with 4×4 capacity, take a ride through the hiking trails on red cloud mine road, see wild burrow, mule dear, long horn sheep, and see some of the most beautiful scenery. Clean bathrooms and roads decent to a point without 4x4. Recommend for those who love adventure, the outdoors, and wildlife.
  • The Imperial National Wildlife Refuge is a great refuge to visit. There are observation points, hiking trails, and beautiful scenery. I highly recommend visiting and spending a half day exploring the refuge and seeing everything that it has to offer.

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