National Parks / Natural World

Kootenai National Wildlife Refuge Bonners Ferry

Where is it at?

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Kootenai National Wildlife Refuge
287 Westside Rd
Bonners Ferry
Tel: (208) 267-3888


The Kootenai National Wildlife Refuge is located approximately 5 miles west of Bonners Ferry, and about 20 miles south of the Canadian border, within the Idaho Panhandle.

Where are we going today?

Want to be an explorer for the day!? Kootenai National Wildlife Refuge is the perfect place for those animal lovers and budding botanists.   

Kids will love roaming this 2,774 acre refuge which is home to a spectacularly large variety of wildlife.   Not only can they spot over 220 species of birds, and 22 species of fish, but they will never forget the first moment they spot the magnificent (and slightly strange looking!) moose, the intimidating yet beautiful bear, or the iconic bald eagle. 

Found in the foothills of the Selkirk Mountains, this stunning refuge is a great way for kids to see first hand the beauty of nature and why its so important to look after it!  

Fun explorer day packs can be found at the headquarters which come with fun binoculars and information to allow them to really feel like true explorers.  They can also pick up Animal Track Cards so they can identify any tracks they may be lucky enough to come across.

The refuge offers a 4.5 mile auto trail, or if your kids are a bundle of energy, why not take them on one of the four hiking trails. 

There are great designated viewing spots along the various trails, and the headquarters offer two spotting scopes to get that closer look.

Don’t forget to pick up your Refuge Explorer Day Pack!

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How much does it cost?

  • AdultsFree
  • ChildrenFree

When can we go?



Any Top Tips?

For those kids who can’t get enough of the beautiful birds of prey, why not take them on the refuge’s monthly bird walk - hosted the third Saturday of every month. Make sure you visit the website for more details. If they are lucky they will spot the trifecta of the eagle, hawk AND falcon! .

Need a little extra help?

No problem! The Refuge Headquarters, Cascade Pond Overlook and Chickadee Trail are all accessible to wheelchairs. The auto tour road is a great way to enjoy the refuge from your car. .

What people are saying?

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    It was a beautiful! Fresh clean air and animals. Roads were well maintained. They have several ducks, birds, and deer.

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