Skip to main content

Winter Wildland returns

Treats for animals and fun for people during winter break.


Skunk with Winter Wildland gingerbread houseEatonville, Wash. – People aren’t the only ones to receive holiday gifts at this time of year. Northwest Trek Wildlife Park’s creative keeper staff is as busy as Santa’s elves, creating special treats for the resident animals.

Winter Wildland returns to Northwest Trek on Dec. 28 and 29, bringing with it wintry sparkle and holiday cheer – plus the chance to burn off some of that winter break energy in nature.

At three keeper chats each day, animals will enjoy enrichment and food items that stimulate their senses and heighten their activity levels. For weeks, Northwest Trek staff have been busy making cardboard “gingerbread” houses, holiday trees with edible decorations, icy popsicles and more.

Here’s the schedule:
Saturday, Dec. 28
• 11:30 a.m. Badger
• 1 p.m. Grizzly bear
• 2:30 p.m. Cougar
Sunday, Dec. 29
• 11:30 a.m. Snowy owl
• 1:30 p.m. Raccoon
• 2:30 p.m. Gray wolf
For people, the real fun is in taking a winter break – whether from school or work – with family and friends, spending the day in nature and seeing native Northwest animals like bald eagles, grizzly bear cubs and river otters along paved walking trails.

Plus every entry to the wildlife park also comes with a 40-minute trip aboard a cozy heated tram through the 435-acre Free-Roaming Area, which is home to bison, Roosevelt elk, bighorn sheep, deer, mountain goats and moose.

And – weather permitting – children from toddlers through tweens can burn off that holiday energy in the Kids’ Trek nature-inspired play area.

All activities are free with membership or paid admission to Northwest Trek.

Northwest Trek will have special winter break hours from Dec. 26 through Jan. 5. The wildlife park’s admission booths will be open daily from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. during that period, with the last tram leaving its station each day at 3. Visitors have until 4:30 p.m. to enjoy the many animal exhibits as well as Kids’ Trek. Northwest Trek is open on New Year’s Day (Jan. 1), but closed on Dec. 24-25.

For more information, see


Northwest Trek, accredited by the Association of Zoos & Aquariums, is a 725-acre zoological park dedicated to conservation, education and recreation by displaying, interpreting and researching native Northwest wildlife and their natural habitats. The wildlife park is a facility of Metro Parks Tacoma and is located 35 miles southeast of Tacoma off State Highway 161.

Media Contacts

Whitney DalBalcon, 253-404-3637 or