John's River Wildlife Area is a 1,500-acre tidal estuary preserve on the southern edge of Grays Harbor that is managed and maintained by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW).
Natural tidal fluctuation of the John's River estuary was previously blocked, but as of 2004 significant dike breaches have been implemented to allow for the natural tidal and seasonal variations that are critical to creating healthy habitat for the numerous permanent and migratory species that call the area home. According to the WDFW:
The most common mammals are Roosevelt elk, black-tailed deer, black bear, coyote, bobcat, muskrat, and rabbits. Birds are mostly ducks, geese, and shorebirds. A nesting Caspian tern colony is nearby and makes use of the Johns River. Crows, great blue herons, hummingbirds, robins, warblers, goldfinches, swallows, snipe, gulls, and many other small birds abound, along with forest grouse and band-tailed pigeon. Streams support whitefish, trout, and salmon.
Visitors will enjoy access into the wildlife area via the 0.6-mile paved John's River Dike Trail, which terminates at an observation and hunting shelter, and a boat ramp at the parking area that provides direct access onto the river primarily for hunters and fishermen.
Click here for seasonal hunting dates and regulations.