Lee Metcalf National Wildlife Refuge - Stevensville

Designated in 1964, the Refuge was created to provide habitats for migratory birds. The 2,800 acres of lush riparian and wetland habitats attract a variety of wildlife. About 250 species of birds, 37 species of mammals, and 17 species of reptiles and amphibians have been documented on the Refuge.

Be sure to look for the following common bird groups: waterfowl (33 species), grebe, wading bird, hawk, eagle, swift, flycatcher, corvid, swallow, thrush, warbler, nuthatch, sparrow, blackbird/oriole, grosbeak, and finch.

Keep an eye out for the following common mammals and reptiles/amphibians: American beaver, yellow-bellied marmot, Columbian ground squirrel, yellow-pine chipmunk, red squirrel, Northern flying squirrel, Northern pocket gopher, common muskrat, North American porcupine, coyote, raccoon, long-tailed weasel, American mink, American badger, Northern river otter, white-tailed deer, bullfrog, painted turtle, and garter snake.

Visitors can enjoy wildlife observation, photography, hunting, fishing, environmental education and interpretation on the Refuge. There are 2.5 miles of walking trails at two locations, the Wildlife Viewing Area (WVA) Trail and the Kenai Nature Trail. Both include a .25 mile of accessible asphalt-paved path. These two trails differ by wildlife habitats; the WVA trail meanders through riparian forest bordering the Bitterroot River while the Kenai Nature Trail (trailhead at Headquarters) borders grassland/wetland habitat offering an open landscape vista of the Bitterroot and Sapphire Mountains. Don't have enough time for a walk? Wildfowl Lane is the county road that bisects the Refuge providing drive-thru scenic views of the surrounding landscape and wildlife.

The Lee Metcalf Wilderness Area and the Lee Metcalf National Wildlife Refuge are two separate entities with two different contact points.


Mailing Address
Not Available

Street Address
4567 Wildfowl Lane
Stevensville,  MT 59870

Phone: 406-777-5552
Fax: 406-777-2498

Lee Metcalf National Wildlife Refuge is located 25 miles south of Missoula and 2 miles north of Stevensville. From I-90 take US Highway South about 30 miles to Stevensville. At the Stevensville cutoff road (269) turn left toward Stevensville. Travel 1 mile to Eastside Highway (203) - turn left travel .25 mile to Wildfowl Lane, turn left. The Refuge's south entrance is 2 miles from this intersection.

The Refuge Headquarters/Visitor Center is located on the Refuge at 4567 Wildfowl Lane (County Road that bisects the Refuge). This address is 2.5 miles north from the Refuge south entrance using Wildfowl Lane or .75 mile west from the intersection of Eastside Highway and Wildfowl Lane (east entrance).

All Year

Daylight hours

Not Available

Not Available

Handicapped Accessible, Interpretive Display, Parking, Public Restroom, Trail

Bird Watching, Bow Hunting, Education, Fishing, Hiking, History, Hunting, Nature, Photography, Waterfowl Hunting, Wildlife Viewing