Hunting is permitted in accordance with state regulations and special refuge regulations.
Open to Hunting
Deer, elk, goose, duck, coot, doves, snipe, and all upland game birds (excluding turkey).
Closed to Hunting
All other species of wildlife not listed are protected. Examples include bear, cougar, snakes, crow, raven, coyote, porcupine, turkey, squirrels, and rabbits.
In areas open to hunting, the Monument is open 7 days/week in accordance with state regulations. Dove hunting is allowed only during the mourning dove season.
The Monument is open from 1-1/2 hours before legal hunting time to 1-1/2 hours after legal hunting time. This includes access to/at the White Bluffs Boat Launch.
General Public Entry
The open areas of the Monument are open to the public 7 days a week from sunrise to sunset. The White Bluffs Boat Launch is open for sport fishing entry from 2 hours before sunrise to 2 hours after sunset. All other fishing access is from sunrise to sunset.
Firearms, Archery and Ammunition
Only shotguns, muzzleloaders, and archery are permitted. Centerfire rifles are prohibited for all hunting. Only federally approved non-toxic shot may be used or possessed for shotguns; this includes buckshot for big game. For big game, the use of lead slugs for shotguns and lead projectiles for muzzleloaders is permitted. Firearms may only be discharged in accordance with FWS regulations (50 CFR 27.42) and refuge-specific regulations (50 CFR Part 32).
Only portable or temporary blinds constructed of non-living natural materials are permitted. Digging or using pit blinds is not permitted.
All vehicles, including bicycles, are restricted to designated motorized routes of travel and parking areas. However, bicycles are allowed on the road between the locked gates on the Ringold Unit and the White Bluffs Overlook and on the roadway from the WB-10 (Wahluke) Ponds parking lot to the ponds.
Dogs are permitted only on leash in parking lots, except during the lawful pursuit of game in legal seasons.
Boats without internal combustion engines are allowed in the WB-10 (Wahluke) Ponds only via walk-in access from the parking lot. Earthen boat launches are located at Parking Area #7 on the Ringold Unit, Ringold Fish Hatchery, and upriver of Vernita Bridge (requires Washington Discovery Pass). The White Bluffs Landing, on the Wahluke Unit, provides a concrete launch.
Horses are allowed only on roads open to vehicle use and on the paved road between the locked gates on the Ringold Unit and the White Bluffs Overlook.
Details on Specific Hunt Areas
Areas Open to Waterfowl, Coot, and Snipe
- The Ringold Unit from the old Hanford Townsite (was the “Wooden Tower”) Power Line crossing (approximately River Mile 363) downstream to the Monument boundary.
- The Saddle Mountain Unit and the Wahluke Unit (East) (see map).
Areas Open to Deer, Elk, Doves, Upland Game Birds
- The Saddle Mountain Unit, Ringold Unit, and the Wahluke Unit (East) (see map).
Note: The Rattlesnake Unit, the Wahluke Unit (West), all the shorelines of the Columbia River Corridor Unit—extending 1/4 mile from the ordinary high water mark—and all of the publicly owned Columbia River islands are closed to all access above the ordinary high water mark. All hunting, except waterfowl, is closed below the ordinary high water mark in Benton County, including islands. See state rules/regulations pamphlet for additional closures.
Selected Prohibited Activities
- Overnight camping/parking
- The use/possession of alcohol while hunting
- Accessing islands above the ordinary high water mark
- Baiting of any wildlife
- Littering (including empty shotgun hulls)
- Commercial guiding for hunting
- Abandoning, discarding, or otherwise leaving personal property unattended
- Target shooting
- Discharging any firearm within 1/4 mile of any maintained building
- Trapping or netting