Fundraiser for the Friends of the Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge

You’re invited!  Please join the Friends on Wednesday, July 19, 2017, from 6:00 – 8:30 pm, at Windy Hills Winery, 1346 S. 38th Court, Ridgefield, WA.

Amazing wine, beer, and hors d’oeuvres will be available and there will be both silent and live auctions.

Cost is $25.00 per guest. Invitations are on the way.  If you did not receive an invitation but would like to attend, please contact Victoria Haugen, Board Secretary, at 503-927-2254

Please send check payable to the Friends of the RNWR to:

Friends of the RNWR

P.O. Box 1022

Ridgefield, WA  98642

Or pay online using Paypal:

If you cannot attend, but would like to make a donation to help the Friends, please use this link:


Night Hike at Refuge

Join host, ethnobotonist and author Kat Anderson at the Cathlapotle Plankhouse for a special presentation, “Beauty, Bounty and Biodiversity,” and night hike on May 26 from 7-8:30 pm.

“Kat Anderson will share connections with California and Pacific Northwest tribes, by examining traditionally managed edible wildflower gardens of California. She will also explore the implications that these gardens have for fostering pollinator habitat, increasing biodiversity, and the ways in which these plants have evolved to meet the needs of people.”

Then at 8:30 pm explore the Oaks to Wetlands Trail on a naturalist guided hike, “The Refuge at Dusk”. RSVP required, email to save your spot today!


Schedule for Mother’s Day at the Refuge

Here’s a schedule of the events to take place this Sunday at the Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge

Plant Walks & Wild Teas

May 14th 12-4pm

For Cathlapotle Chinookans tending to plant relatives has always been the responsibility of women in the community. Since time immemorial, women have tended to wapato, camas, and many other plants that people have relied on for food, medicine, and trade. This Mother’s Day, bring mom out to the Cathlapotle Plankhouse to connect to plants important to Chinookan Peoples, and to learn about edible and medicinal plants you can connect with in your own neighborhoods.

1pm:  Tending the Wild Walk
Join Friends staff for a walk on the Oaks to Wetland Trail to learn about how the women of Cathlapotle tended to their plant relatives like camas and wapato.

2pm: Family Nature Walk
Learn about the plants and animals that call the Refuge home.

3:00 pm: Soothing Herbal Salve demonstration
Learn a few common plants that can be used to make an herbal salve for soothing cuts, scrapes, and dry skin.

12pm –  4pm: Plankhouse Tours and Children’s Activities
Tour the Plankhouse on your own or guided by our experienced volunteers. Children’s activities will be available as well.

12pm – 4pm: Wild Tea Samples
Taste teas made with native and non-native plants such as blackberry leaf, dandelion root, doug fir, and more! (until supplies last)

Free with Refuge admission:

Celebrate Mother’s Day at the Plankhouse

This Sunday is Mother’s Day and you can bring mom out to the Cathlapotle Plankhouse and connect to plants important to Chinookan Peoples for this special event.

Learn about edible and medicinal plants, enjoy tasting wild teas, learn about medicinal salves, and go on a nature walk.

The Plankhouse serves as an education/interpretive center and is used by the Chinook Indian Nation for cultural events throughout the year. This event is perfect for the whole family.

Wildlife Calendar

Help support the Friends of Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge and their unique education and habitat restoration programs by purchasing this 2017 calendar, originally $15, now just $7.50!
These 16 month calendars run from January 2017 to April 2018, and feature all 16 of the 2016 Refuge Photo Contest Winners.

Each month’s photo is labeled with the winner’s name and their ranking in the contest, as well as identification of the subject of each photo. This calendar also includes key dates that are important to the Friends and the Refuge.

This 8.5×11 calendar opens to 11×17, with #80 cover paper and #100 paper inside. It is saddle-stitched, and includes a hole for wall hanging.

Please contact the Friends of the Refuge at with questions.

To purchase these beautiful calendars

Don’t want to pay shipping?

You can also find these calendars for sale at Season’s Coffee Tea & Remedies, located inside the Old Liberty Theater at 115 N Main Ave, Ridgefield, WA 98642! (Cash or check please!)


Volunteer at the Refuge

Work alongside fellow conservationists at the Ridgefield Wildlife Refuge while learning about native wildlife management this Saturday, Aug. 27. Volunteers are key to helping biological staff keep wetlands healthy by searching for and removing invasive plants. All work days begin at 9 a.m., rain or shine.

Participants should wear waterproof boots (some are available on‐site) and dress for the weather. Gloves, snacks, and drinks will be provided. Volunteers will meet at the visitor kiosk on the River ‘S’ Unit of the Refuge. Pre-registration is encouraged. For more information and to register, click here or email

Enter the RNWR Photo Contest

The annual Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge photo contest deadline is Sept 6. Anyone can enter up to 6 photos and entry is free. The prizes are quite nice and they don’t only have to be bird photos with a monster lens that most of us can’t afford. Last year’s winners include photos of frogs and other critters.

Here is the link for more information:

Coyote at the Refuge


Paul Snoey packed a lunch and headed cross county into the refuge today. He stopped at Fowler Lake to take off his boots and put on running shoes so he could wade through the wetlands.

A coyote puppy came out of the reeds on Blackwater Island and laid down in the shallows for a cool soak

So cute! Paul grabbed his camera and got a couple pictures using a hiking stick to steady the camera. Thanks for sending, Paul.

Temporary River ‘S’ Closure

Fish & Wildlife

The River ‘S’ Unit of the Refuge will be closed Tuesday July 5th for wetland maintenance.
The Carty Unit will remain open for hiking, wildlife observation, and photography. For additional information concerning the public use opportunities during this closure, please contact the Refuge Office at (360) 887-4106.

Cathlapotle Plankhouse Second Sunday Series

Fish & Wildlife

WHEN: July 10th, 12pm – 4pm

WHERE: Cathlapotle Plankhouse, 28908 North Main Avenue, Ridgefield WA 98624

Events FREE with Refuge Admission

Contempory Native Art Inspired by Cultures of the Columbia RiverMask Exhibit and Artist Talks by Lillian Pitt and Bill Rutherford


Renowned Native Artists and Friends, Lillian Pitt (Wasco, Yakama, Warm Springs) & Bill Rutherford (Chickasaw and African American), will speak on their creative process, how they draw inspiration from Native Cultures of the Columbia River, and why they use masks as a medium of artistic expression. There will also be mask collections from each artist on display throughout the day.


(Hikers meet in front of the Plankhouse, approximately 1 mile hike on uneven terrain)

Mask exhibit, Plankhouse tours and kids’ activities are ongoing during the event.

Temporary Disturbance & Closure of the River ‘S’ Unit at Refuge

Friends of RNWRThe Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge’s River ‘S’ Unit will be open to the public on Monday June 20th and Tuesday June 21st. There may be minor disturbances to the public resulting from moving equipment adjacent to the Auto Tour Route.

The Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge’s River ‘S’ Unit will be temporarily closed on:
Wednesday, June 22nd and Thursday, June 23rd and Monday, June 27th through Thursday, June 30th
for maintenance activities.

Additional closure dates may be required the following week as necessary to complete this work.

The Carty Unit will remain open for hiking, wildlife observation, and photography. For additional information concerning the public use opportunities during this closure, please contact the Refuge Office at 360-887-4106.

Please visit our website at

River “S” to close Tuesday and Wednesday

The River ‘S’ Unit of the Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge will be temporarily closed to public use starting Tuesday, June 14th through Wednesday, June 15th, 2016 for replacement of a water delivery pipe.

The Carty Unit will remain open for hiking, wildlife observation, and photography. For additional information concerning the public use opportunities during this closure, please contact the Refuge Office at 360-887-4106.

Cathlapotle Mother’s Day

Cathlapotle plankhouse

Sunday, May 8, 2016 – 12:00pm to 4:00pm

Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge, Cathlapotle Plankhouse
28908 NW Main Avenue, Ridgefield WA

1:00 – Presentation: Where the Women Are: Gender and Power in the Archaeological Record of the Pacific Northwest

2:00 – Ethnobotany Hike

Plankhouse tours and kids’ activities all day.

All events  are FREE with refuge admission

BirdFest & Bluegrass

Do you love attending our annual BirdFest celebration? Do you want to see it be successful in 2016? If so, then we need you to get involved in planning next year’s event. Commitment is one two hour meeting a month, March – September, and volunteering BirdFest Weekend (October 1st & 2nd).

We are looking for help in the following areas:

Committee Chair (Work with current committee chair to schedule/host monthly meetings, and handle big picture event logistics)

Organizing kids activities in Davis Park

Coordinating the vendors in the Birders Marketplace at the Community Center

Coordinate special walks or talks

Just sit in and brainstorm new and exciting BirdFest activities!

Want to Make BirdFest a success?

Contact Sarah at: (360) 887-4106

Volunteer Naturalist Training at the Refuge

Fish & Wildlife

Thousands of adults and school children visit our local refuges annually and volunteers are often the only people they get to share their stories and questions with. Share your interest and passion with others by exploring with school children, leading guided walks with the public, or simply greeting people on our trails and in the contact station.

Volunteer training will introduce both Ridgefield and Steigerwald Lake Refuges and how to interact and communicate with many fun and interesting people.  The training will be on the four Fridays of April.

To sign up for the training, please RSVP to Josie Finley at 360-887-4106 or