5236 Nielsen Road
1st Mon of Month 8:00 AM - 4:30 PM
Tues-Sat Noon - 4:00 PM
If bird watching is your passion or you simply enjoy taking quiet stroll then Tennant Lake is the place for you! The Tennant Lake Wildlife Area allows the visitor to experience one of the most spectacular wetlands in Washington State. An elevated boardwalk takes the visitor on a one-mile journey through swamp and marsh habitats where visitors may see more than 150 species of songbirds, raptors and waterfowl as well as the occasional muskrat, deer, beaver and other wetland creatures. To help indentify what you're seeing, bird lists are available at the Interpre tive Center upon request.
The boardwalk is open from mid-January to mid-October and closed other times to allow hunting. During spring and summer months water resistant shoes are recommended as the trail can be a little wet during rainy times.
For a birds-eye view, climb the 50-foot viewing tower and reward yourself with a spectacular overview of the lake. For those who can’t easily climb stairs, the tower is equipped with a camera and monitor to allow everyone to enjoy the view.
If wetlands and wildlife aren’t your game, Tennant Lake also offers an award-winning fragrance garden. With over 3,000 square feet of raised beds filled with fragrant plants to explore, your nose will appreciate the visit. The garden is open year-round, however, the best time to visit is in the summer when the plants are at their best. Name plates make it convenient for you to pick out plant species you like the best. The raised beds and braille labeling system make this garden an attractive destination for those with physical and sight impairments. Special tours of the garden with the Fragrance Gardener may be arranged by calling 384-3064.
The Interpretive Center offers a variety of adult and youth education programs ranging from wetland day camps for kids to adult seminars about Northwest Amphibians. Classes vary depending upon the season so your best bet is to call for specific schedules. Along with a variety of maps, displays and interpretative literature, the Interpretive Center also has two hands-on kids rooms so that youngsters can get a "real feel" for the flora, fauna and natural processes at work.
Whether you're looking for something different to do with the kids, are planning an outing or a field trip, want to learn more about wetlands, natural processes or just take a quiet walk, Tennant Lake is a place you really don’t want to miss!
Take the Ferndale Exit 262 off I-5. Go west on Main Street 1/2 mile, turn left onto Hovander Raod at the railroad underpass. Turn right on Nielsen Raod and go to end.
Kid Friendly | Walking Trails | Wheelchair Accessible
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San Juan Islands