Southwest Adventures

Bosque del Apache National Reserve – New Mexico Driving Tours

Join our adventure tours as we visit this unique habitat along the Rio Grande.

Bosque Del Apache is an unforgettable experience for the devout bird watcher, and referred to as one of the most spectacular refuges in the United States. The refuge, dedicated in 1939 as a winter habitat for a variety of birds including ducks, snow geese, Sandhill cranes and various wading birds, covers over 57,000 acres along the Rio Grande. The bird migrations are seasonal, and aside from the major numbers seen in the wintertime the birds are not present in huge numbers. But there are always some year round residents to be spotted. A stop at the visitor center provides fascinating information about a variety of the birds and wildlife in and around the refuge and you can pick up a bird identification sheet to check off which birds you can spot in the refuge. There is a lovely cactus garden where a wide variety of cactus species can be identified. Hiking trails crisscross parts of the refuge, allowing extraordinary views of wildlife and drivable loops will bring you closer to wildlife.


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Dependent on the Rio Grande for water this refuge is actually a man-maintained area with local farmers providing corn for the birds and regular irrigation. This makes for a unique habitat in the middle of an otherwise dry desert, giving migratory birds and other animals a place to thrive. A collaborative project between many different farmers and wildlife officials this area is a great representation of the way that people can work with the environment to provide a stable safe haven for wildlife. Our knowledgeable tour guides will share with you the interesting history and future of this expansive wildlife reserve.


Birds gather in the tens of thousands each fall and stay throughout the winter. At dusk, flocks of geese and cranes return to roost in the marshes. Just imagine tens of thousands of ducks, geese, and Sandhill Cranes in the air at dawn or dusk, the air filling with calls and the beating of wings. Each season at Bosque Del Apache offers wondrous wildlife viewing. Cottonwood trees, willows, wetlands, and meadows combine to create a magical place, a place the hundreds of thousands of birds call their winter home.

The spring and fall bring flycatchers, shorebirds and warblers. The summer months are excellent for nesting ducks, least bittern, shorebirds, songbirds, and waders. Some year-round residents at the refuge include coyote, mule deer, muskrat, pheasant, porcupine, quail, roadrunner, and turkey. Keep your eyes peeled on our New Mexico driving tours and you are sure to see a variety of different wildlife.


Bosque Del Apache National Reserve Related Attractions:

Sandia Peak

Sandia Peak


Santa Fe

Fort Craig

Fort Craig

Arizona and New Mexico Tours – Read about the above attractions, close to New Mexico’s City of Rocks State Park, that are also visited on our small group tours.


If you have any questions about our exciting Southwest vacations please feel free to contact us anytime at This tour can be scheduled as a custom group tour, or go to our dates page to find out departure times for our scheduled tours.