Snag Boat Bend: Finley National Wildlife Refuge

Snag Boat Bend

Entrance to Snag Boat Bend off Peoria Road.

We were welcomed to Snag Boat Bend with the sound of bird song. From the time we opened our car doors, until we closed them again to leave, bird song was our constant companion.

Part of the Finley National Wildlife Refuge, Snag Boat Bend is operated with the same conservation goals, to protect the winter habitat of the dusky Canada goose. When we visited a couple of weeks ago (in late March), the geese had apparently already left. What we encountered were song birds, or more precisely, the sound of song birds.

Boardwalk Snag Boat Bend

Boardwalk at Snag Boat Bend

Typical for spring in the Willamette Valley, we flirted with rain showers throughout our visit, but that didn’t seem to bother the beaver we saw swimming through one of the sloughs, a kestrel which appeared to have found a perfect nesting spot, or the numerous song birds flitting in the trees and shrubs around us.

Kestrel Snag Boat Bend


Located off of Peoria Road (about 11 miles north of Harrisburg) this small segment of the refuge is only an hours drive north of Cottage Grove. It is different from Finley because it is actually borders the Willamette River, it is much smaller and seems to be much less visited.

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