E. E. Wilson Wildlife Area

This wildlife area is on the site of Camp Adair, a US Army training cantonment, which for a few years in the 1940s was effectively Oregon’s second-largest city. The area is now a complex of brushland, riparian woods, and restored wetlands. The street grid from Camp Adair still remains, providing more than 20 mi of mostly level paths (many paved) that are ideal for bicycle birding. In winter, Song and Sooty Fox Sparrows are abundant in the brushy hedgerows. Sharp-shinned Hawk, Cooper’s Hawk, and Merlin prey on the large sparrow and finch flocks. Wood Duck and Hooded Merganser are especially easy to find here in spring. Solitary Sandpiper shows up regularly in late April and again in early fall; check wooded ponds. This is the Willamette Valley’s most important nesting area for Yellow-breasted Chat; they are easy to hear March – June, but good luck spotting one! For a more vigorous hike, the Coffin Butte trail climbs 200 ft into oak woodland with a remnant upland prairie. Look here for nesting Cassin’s Vireo, Chipping Sparrow and Lazuli Bunting along with resident Hutton’s Vireo. Fallouts of migrant warbler occur in April when oaks and maples are budding.

From L10 go S on Buena Vista Rd to T at Springhill Dr. Turn L and go 1 mi to T at Corvallis Independence Hwy. Turn L and go 1 mi S. Turn R on Camp Adair Rd. Go 1 mi and turn R into paved parking area for Camp Adair Memorial Garden (GPS 44 41.980 N, 123 12.517 W). From Hwy 99W midway between Monmouth and Corvallis, at MP 73.8 turn E on Camp Adair Rd. Go 0.5 mi and turn L into parking area. Additional turnouts with parking along W part of Camp Adair Rd provide access to both S and N parts of wildlife area. Coffin Butte trail starts from a small gravel lot on W side of Hwy 99W, 0.3 mi N of Camp Adair Rd.