Play Bird Bingo on Your Next Winter Hike
Spotting wildlife is a great reason to get outside and hike in the winter. Up your chances of seeing birds on these kid-friendly bird hikes, and turn it into a game by taking along a copy of Winter Bird Bingo. It's got the hiking suggestions below, plus fun facts and habitat tips about the featured birds.
Skagit Wildlife Area
Stanwood. Big Ditch Slough: 0.5 miles and up; flat; walk along the dike. Hop in the car and pair this hike with the flat 2-mile loop at the Skagit Wildlife Area just out of Conway. Bird Bingo: see all Bird Bingo species!
Padilla Bay, Mount Vernon. 2.4 miles oneway; flat; through sloughs, tidal flats, and salt marshes. Visit the Breazeale Interpretive Center. Bird Bingo: see all Bird Bingo species!
>> Download your copy of Winter Bird Bingo to take on your next hike. Let us know how you do.
Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge
Olympia. Nisqually Estuary Boardwalk Trail: 2 miles one-way; flat; boardwalk extends one mile into the delta; $3.00/family. Free binocular rental! Bird Bingo: great blue heron, bald eagle (and many others!)
Dungeness Spit trail, Sequim. 6.5 miles one-way; 130ft elevation gain and loss; briefly through a wooded area, then drops to the beach; $3.00/family. Walk a little or walk to the lighthouse, and see up to 250 bird species.
Anacortes. Fidalgo Head Loop Trail: about 4 miles round-trip; explore side trails like Green Point and Juniper Point trails to get better water access. Bird Bingo: bald eagles.
Coupeville. Bluff Trail: 1.5 miles one-way, mildly rolling trail along the bluff. Go at low tide for a beach walk. Bird Bingo: common loon, bald eagle.
Your Local Park!
Check out city, county and state parks for easy-to-spot birds like blackcapped chickadees, Stellars jays, mallards, and various woodpeckers. For Seattle-ites, you can occasionally spot a great blue heron at the Ballard Locks. For Tacoma and Federal Way families, check out the Dumas Bay Sanctuary heron breeding colony interpretive signs. For folks in the Spokane area, just cross the border into Idaho, and you'll have a good chance of spotting bald eagles on the shores of Lake Coeur d'Alene.
More online resources for hikers who love birds
- Seattle Audubon Society’s Bird Web: Learn about birds you saw or want to see on your hike.
- Cornell University’s Online Bird Guide: Learn about birds you saw or want to see on your hike. Listen to bird calls (loon, chickadee).
- Bird Distribution Maps (select WA counties): Learn where different migratory birds winter in Washington.
- Padilla Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve: click on “Publications” and scroll down to download
a bird checklist and children’s activities.
- Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge: User-friendly website about refuge wildlife and how you can experience it.
- Skagit Wildlife Areas
- Washington Park Map