L.T. Murray
Wildlife Area Location

Melissa Babik
1130 W University Way, Ellensburg, WA 98926

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L.T. Murray Wildlife Area
Quilomene Unit
The 17,803-acre Quilomene unit and 28,549-acre Whiskey Dick unit, located about 15 miles northeast of Ellensburg, are now connected by WDFW’s recent acquisition of 5,441 acres of the Skookumchuck drainage. The contiguous total of 51,793 acres (of which WDFW owns 11,523 on Quilomene and 17,027 on Whiskey Dick, with the balance in DNR acres) is managed together. The first purchase was made in 1962 with state Interagency Committee for Outdoor Recreation funds to expand winter range for deer and elk herds and to perpetuate and improve upland game bird habitat.

The units range in elevation from 550 feet above sea level at the Columbia River on the east, to 3,200 feet in the northwest corner (a distance of some 10 miles).

The northernmost Quilomene unit is bordered on the north by the Colockum Wildlife Area. The Quilomene Creek basin lies in the dry, shrub-steppe habitat along the Columbia River northeast of Ellensburg. The similar Whiskey Dick Creek basin lies south of the Quilomene. Flows remain fairly constant due to the springs scattered throughout the drainage. Quilomene Creek, Whiskey Dick Creek, and some of their tributaries provide habitat for resident trout. Steelhead have been documented in Quilomene Creek.

Vegetation is mostly shrub steppe, mostly sagebrush and bitterbrush mixed with bunchgrasses. Streams and springs provide narrow bands of riparian habitat. Wildlife use is diverse, including elk, deer, bighorn sheep, sage grouse, turkey, quail, and a myriad of small mammals, neo-tropical/upland birds, raptors, and reptiles. There are numerous streams with resident trout. Some streams historically had anadromous stocks that are currently federally listed. WDFW and other state and federal agencies are actively pursuing the removal of barriers from these streams to re-establish anadromous fish use. Hunting, fishing, camping and wildlife watching are all popular.

Viewing Opportunities


  • Birds of Prey
  • Eagles
  • Shorebirds
  • Songbirds
  • Upland Birds
  • Wading Birds
  • Waterfowl
  • Mammals

  • Bear
  • Bighorn sheep
  • Deer
  • Elk
  • Small Mammals
  • Other

  • Butterflies
  • Reptiles/Amphibians
  • Spawning Salmon
  • Wildflowers
  • How to Get Here
    Access Site #1
    Driving Directions
    Parke Creek and Quilomene: Take Vantage Hwy east from Ellensburg. Just past Milepost 10 take a left on Parke Creek Road. Travel approx. 3 miles to the junction of Parke Creek and Little Parke Creek roads. Stay north to travel up Little Parke, or turn east to follow Parke Creek. Private inholding occur along Parke Creek road for the next 1.5 miles. Continue another 2.8 miles and turn right to access the Quilomene Wildlife Area.
    Parking/Restroom Information
    No developed parking areas; Parking along the roadside is acceptable on state ownership, but not on private lands. No restrooms.
    Other Information
    This road system is not yet marked for Green Dot Road Management, but no off-road motorized travel is permitted.
    Access Site #2
    Driving Directions
    Quilomene and Skookumchuck: Take Vantage Hwy east from Ellensburg. Approximately 0.5 mile east Milepost 16 is the Beacon Ridge Road turnoff at the Wild Horse Wind Project. Access is limited/restricted through the wind project. Drive through access is permitted April 1 to December 1, from Dawn to Dusk. Follow the Beacon Ridge road to the Quilomene Ridge road, then follow the green dot road map to access the wildlife area.
    Parking/Restroom Information
    No developed parking areas; Parking along the roadside is acceptable on state ownership. No parking on the Wild Horse Wind Project without a permit. No restrooms on state ownership.
    Other Information
    The area south of the Quilomene Ridge road, east of the wind project, north of the Vantage Hwy and west of the Columbia River is closed to motorized vehicles from February 15 to May 1 to protect wintering elk. The Beacon Ridge road through the Wild Horse Wind Project is closed to public access from December 1 to April 1.
    Unique Features
    Audobon Important Bird area.
    Other Information
    The Quilomene and Whiskey Dick Wildlife Areas are within a Green Dot Road Management area. Maps and regulations are available at the Regional Office, District Office and DNR's SE Regional Office. In addition, yellow readerboards with maps are placed at entry points. Motorized vehicles must stay on designated green dot roads.

    Quilomene Wildlife Area is open year-round but a portion will be closed to motor vehicles Feb. 1 through April 30 to protect wintering elk from disturbance, and in turn reduce elk damage to adjacent private lands. The area to be closed is north of the Vantage Highway, south of Quilomene Ridge Road, east of the Wild Horse Wind Farm and west of the Columbia River. See more info.

    Wild Horse Wind and Solar Facility and Renewable Energy Center
    See the PSE Wild Horse Tours & Recreation website for hunting and access information.

    Wildlife Area Habitat Conservation Plans
    Weekender Report
    Wildlife Viewing Guides
    Accessing Washington's Outdoors
    Find a Water Access Site
    GoHunt - Interactive Mapping
    Green Dot Maps
    No activities currently listed for this Unit.

    If you are Hunting or Fishing, remember to check all current regulations.

    Activities may include restrictions or require permits. Please see Public Conduct Rules for more information.