Wilson Wildlife Area

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Area Alerts: 

Due to recent weather events, several roads are closed on the wildlife area. Barricades have been set up on the roads that are closed. Please refrain from driving around or moving barricades.

When coming from the west via the Bunker Hill blakcktop (192nd Street), Land Road is closed near the Cedar Creek bridge. This closures includes the Cedar Creek boat ramp and Reservoir Road. The Horseshoe Bend area of the property is also closed due to high water. Access to the wildlife area west of the Cedar Creek bridge/boat ramp is still open.

Elm Creek is also inaccessible. Both the Elm Creek dock and boat ramps are under water. Additionally, the water crossing over Turkey Creek along Reservoir Road is closed due to high water. Finally, on the northern part of the wildlife area, 193rd Street is closed at the first water crossing. This crossing is currently inaccessible due to high water.

Click on the "News" or "General Information" links above for 2018 Dove Field information, refuge dates, contact info, and other current events.

Click HERE for Wilson Lake brochure map

Click on "News" link above for Wilson Wildlife Area refuge boundary maps

Wilson Wildlife Area is located in the scenic Smoky Hills of northcentral Kansas and is on the upper end of 9,000 acre Wilson Reservoir. The 8,069 acre public hunting area is made up of 5,000 acres of rugged rolling hills of native prairie, approximately 2,000 acres of cropland, and 1,000 acres of riparian timber along the Saline River, Cedar Creek, Turkey Creek, and Elm Creek.

Area management focuses on providing a quality experience for visitors, and managing wildlife and wildlife habitats for optimum hunting, fishing and outdoor recreational opportunities. Pheasant, quail, turkey, dove, rabbit, whitetail deer, waterfowl, furbearers and many songbirds and non-game wildlife inhabit or pass through and use the area.

The area has a waterfowl refuge that was established in 1996. Hunting opportunities are fair for deer, turkey, waterfowl, and upland birds. The area receives heavy hunting pressure during season openers and can provide less crowded conditions later in the hunting seasons.

Information shelters on the area and the Wilson Area Office have more information available.

Area News - Updated: 08/31/2013
Wilson Wildlife Area Wildlife Refuge Boundary Map (PDF - 4.80 MB)

The refuge is closed to all access September 1 through January 31 except by special permit only.  This map is to be used for general reference only. Signs will mark the actual refuge boundary. Use the posted signs as the true boundary.

2018 Managed Dove Fields (JPEG - 282.42 kB)

Updated August 27th, 2018

Sunflower fields will have portions of fields mowed leading up to the season.  Wheat fields may be burned, mowed, or disked depending on conditions.  Wilson Wildlife Area does NOT require non-toxic shot for dove hunting.  Managed dove fields are open to all hunters SEPT 1.

Decker Rd Dove Field– Sunflowers (12 ac)/Wheat(5 ac)– From 192nd Rd, go  ¾ mi. west on Decker Rd and park near KDWPT sign.  Field is located ¼ mi south along WA access road. Walk-In access from parking area only. Survey cards will be available by parking area. This field produced a fair to good stand of sunflowers. Dove use expected to be fair to good.

Old Archery Range Field– Sunflowers (5 ac)/Wheat (7 ac)– From Saline River Bridge on 192nd Rd, go North approx. ½ mi. Park in Hunter Parking lot on East side of 192nd.   From parking lot, .3 mile walk following mowed path. Survey cards will be available by parking area.  Sunflower production was poor on this field and dove use is expected to be poor.

General Information

Wilson Wildlife Area

Contact: Scott Thomasson

Phone: (785) 658-2465

Wilson Area Office
#3 State Park Road
Sylvan Grove, KS, 67481


                                CURRENT EVENTS
ATTENTION: The refuge at Wilson Wildlife Area will be closed to all activities Sept 1 - Jan 31 except by special permit.


Special Regulations
  • Camping, fires, and off road vehicle use are not allowed on the area.
  • No Cliff jumping


Here is a complete list of Public Land Regulations or you can download the regulation summary.


The 8,069 acre Wilson Wildlife Area was made available to the Kansas Forestry Fish and Game Commission under the terms of a license with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in 1965.

Wilson Facilities
Elm Creek Boat Ramp
  • Type of Facility: Boat Ramp
  • Location of Facility: 38.936369 -98.629865
  • Click for more information

    This Boat ramp is used for small watercraft and is not usable when lake is 5 feet low.

    Located 6 miles north of Bunker Hill.

Cedar Creek Boat Ramp

Area Maintenance Building
  • Type of Facility: Information Center
  • Location of Facility: 39.973018 -98.723434
  • Click for more information

    Field office and equipment storage.

    Located 6 miles north of Bunker Hill.

Wilson Wildlife Area Calendar

    Wilson Waterfowl Report - 03/12/2019
    Waterfowl numbers Duck and dark goose season is now closed for the 2018-2019 season. Approximately 2,000 snows
    Mallard Migration Rank

    Mallard Migration Rank = 

    The Mallard Migration Rank is subjective and ranges from 0 (no mallards) to 10 (Peak Mallard Numbers)

    Water level 1516.00; at conservation
    Hunting conditions Fair. The lake has opened up considerably.
    Expected hunting success Poor. Snow goose use of the area is light with relatively low numbers of geese utilizing the area.

    Reminders: Wilson Reservoir is in the Low Plains Late duck zone. This season closes Dec. 30 and then reopens Jan. 19-Jan. 27, 2019. Dark goose (except white-fronts) and light goose seasons are open Nov. 7, 2018-Feb. 17, 2019. White-fronted goose season is open Oct. 27-Dec. 30, 2018 and reopens Jan 26-Feb. 17, 2019.

    The light goose spring conservation season runs from Feb. 18-Apr. 30, 2019.

    All access (including hunters, fishermen, and boating) is prohibited Sept. 1, 2018-Jan. 31, 2019 on the mid-lake refuge and the refuge located at the west end of the lake.

    Click HERE for Duck Season, Regulation, and Research information.

    Click HERE for hunting regulations in Lucas Park, Minooka Park and Sylvan Park.