Planning the SW Washington Route of the Great
Washington State Birding Trail

Along the Great Washington State Birding Trail you will find the top places for the best bird watching in the Evergreen State. It is a self-guided driving route covering 3,000 square miles, with each of seven routes in the state to be published in a full-color map. The trail is designed to attract nature tourists from around the state, nation, and world.

The route for southwest Washington is just being planned. This part of the trail will cover the Olympic Peninsula and Southwest Washington from the I-5 corridor to the Pacific Coast. The first part of the process is identifying good birding sites to be included in the route. By September about 70 sites will be chosen for the SW Washington Route, and the two-year process of creating the map can begin. Adding signage and site improvements will continue about three more years.

The first two routes of the Great Washington Birding Trail are already completed and the maps can be ordered free of charge from Audubon Washington by visiting their web site. Thousands of the attractive, 25" x 37" maps of the Cascade Loop and the Coulee Corridor Scenic Byway have already been distributed. One side of each map features the driving route with stops at the best birding sites in the area. The other side gives detailed information that birders want: where to see what species of birds in each season, visitor information, and travel directions.

This project is a partnership of Audubon Washington, Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, and the Washington State Office of Trade and Economic Development Tourism Office, along with many local and regional groups. With 71 million people in the United States describing themselves as interested in bird watching, Birding Trails in other states have become big business. The trails and their birds attract visitors to primarily rural locations, often in off-peak times of the year, and spur economic development in the entire region.

If you know of a site that would be a worthwhile "nature tourism" stop, then attend one of the information workshops organized for our region. Bring your ideas and enthusiasm and participate in creating the Great Washington State Birding Trail. Site nomination workshops for Cowlitz, Wahkiakum and Pacific Counties are scheduled in three locations: May 11, 7:00 p.m at the Cowlitz PUD in Longview; May 18, 7:00 p.m. at Boondock's Restaurant in South Bend; and May 19, 2:00 and 7:00 p.m. at Elks Lodge in Long Beach. For more information, call Willapa Hills Audubon Society (360) 578-3949.

Questions? Contact:

Charlotte Persons
Willapa Hills Audubon Society
P.O. Box 3993
Longview, WA 98632
(360) 578-3949 (evening)
(360) 442-2575 (day)

Audubon Washington
Click above.

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