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“Benton Lake is not a lake”

Benton Lake National Wildlife Refuge
Reviewed 30 June 2016

We went to the visitor's center while in Great Falls. There isn't really a lake at Benton Lake Wildlife Refuge. It is a wetlands. We talked to a worker. We decided not to drive the 9 miles since it didn't appear to be worth it.

2  Thank concertina61
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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2 - 6 of 14 reviews

Reviewed 24 February 2016 via mobile

After business meetings all day I went out to be able to walk and stretch a bit. It is a beautiful area and is a place I could sit and watch the birds for awhile.

Thank Karlina C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 July 2015

With a morning to spare before joining up with the rest of our tour group, we rented a car and drove out to this wildlife refuge hoping for some interesting birding.

We didn't expect much when we started the 9-mile loop drive as the lake was mostly dry. However, once we turned to follow the canal we found where all the birds were. Concentrated into this small area were a surprising variety of waterfowl and shorebirds. I was a bit surprised to find that our list added up to 46 species in only two hours of birding, including some we hadn't seen in decades. Very nice.

5  Thank The Other Jim H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 July 2015

I probably should have called first (but then likely would have come anyway) because by early July the water levels were low enough that pretty much only one small area of water remains. We did see several shore birds: willet, avocet, sandpipers, and gulls, and a few of the more typical grassland birds like horned lark and sparrows. I was hoping there would be more water in it with other varieties as well, so I guess I will need to try back earlier in the year.
The roads are well maintained but the signs were not. Often either the sign was missing, or in the tour pamplet they had misprinted or missing info so you weren't sure where the stops were or what to look for.
The vault toilet needed some attention. Some type of critter seems to be using it as a toilet as well, and frequently. Needed a good go with a broom or wet dry vac because there was quite a pile of probably mouse droppings in a corner.
We are pretty used to varying conditions on both auto tours and vault toilets, but a little fixing up and putting conditions on the website would make this location go up several notches with little effort. But it's free and a good excursion at the same time.
Heck, I'd move out there and take the job and see to it, if you want to hire me.

1  Thank okaugust
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 May 2015 via mobile

Scaring up a pheasant as we were driving up was a surprising start. Good variety of water birds. American Avocets were the most plentiful with a few spotted sitting on nests. Highly recommend.

2  Thank masfw
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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