From the intersection of I 10 and LA 1 (Exit 153) in Baton Rouge, go south on LA 1 for 22.1 miles to LA 69/ Bowie St. in White Castle. Turn right (south) on LA 69 for 11.4 miles to LA 70. Turn right (west) and go 28.0 miles. Bear left (south-east) on LA 182 briefly to US 90. Go west on US 90 for 1.3 miles until it reconnects with LA 182. Merge onto LA 182 and go west about 5.5 miles where it briefly merges with US 90. Go another 0.4 miles to the Kemper Williams Park sign on the left. Cotten Road is the entrance road to the park. Please bird this site from the roadside only.

Cotten Road is a traditional stop for Louisiana birders en route to Grand Isle. This quiet stretch of road runs through gorgeous mature bottomland hardwood forest habitat and terminates at the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway. 

Bottomland hardwood plant species are diverse, and trees are crawling with poison ivy and wild grape species–a veritable bird feast from late-summer through winter. In summer, these woodlands host Mississippi Kite, Red-shouldered and Broad-winged Hawks, along with Barred Owl, Red-bellied, Downy, Hairy, and Pileated Woodpeckers, Acadian Flycatcher, White-eyed and Red-eyed Vireos, Carolina Chickadee, Carolina Wren, and Prothonotary, Hooded, and Kentucky Warblers.

During winter, expect additions such as Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, Eastern Phoebe, Blue-headed Vireo, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, American Robin, Cedar Waxwing, Yellow-rumped Warbler, and numerous sparrows. 

Spring and fall migration periods bring additional species of vireos, thrushes, tanagers, buntings and orioles. Species include Painted Bunting, Indigo Bunting, Northern Waterthrush, Summer Tanager, Scarlet Tanager, Orchard Oriole, Hermit Thrush, and Louisiana Waterthrush.

The cattails, rushes, and other emergent vegetation can hold American and Least Bitterns, Marsh Wren, Common Yellowthroat, Swamp Sparrow, Red-winged Blackbird, and Orchard Oriole. Look also for Great and Snowy Egrets and Little Blue, Green, and Tricolored Herons, as well as Anhinga, White Ibis, and Roseate Spoonbill.

The east side of the road is more accessible due to the presence of a wide/maintained powerline right-of-way. Parking along the way is limited to the roadside.

For those who prefer to walk the road, parking is available at adjacent Kemper Park. No amenities exist on Cotten Road, but Kemper Park has restrooms/water, a playground, ball fields, and an RV campground.

Paved Trails