Wild Horse Wind and Solar Facility and Renewable Energy Center
The Wild Horse Wind and Solar Facility and Renewable Energy Center is located 16 miles east of Ellensburg in central Washington.
The wind turbines at Wild Horse can generate up to 273 megawatts (MW) of electricity. The solar array, one of the Northwest's largest, can generate up to 502 kilowatts of electricity. Puget Sound Energy’s Renewable Energy Center offers a first-hand look at how these elements are turned into electricity.
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The Renewable Energy Center
The wind and sun of Kittitas County are a tremendous natural resource for producing clean, renewable energy. Set high on a ridge, the Renewable Energy Center provides visitors with an up-close look at the facility’s 149 wind turbines, as well as 360 degree views of Mount Rainier, Mount Adams, Mount Hood and the Columbia River Basin.
Take a tour, or explore the educational displays to learn more about wind and solar technology, as well as the area's unique natural history. Outdoor trails lead to a solar array, blade, turbine generator, gearbox and additional displays.
Open April-October 31st, 9:00-5:00pm
From April through November, self-guided tour packets for the outside exhibits are available via email or in the box near the front door.
From December through March, the Wild Horse Wind Facility is closed to all public access. Recreational access with an Access Permit will resume April 1st.
Weather permitting, free guided tours depart daily, from April through October 31, from the Renewable Energy Center at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. No reservation is needed for these tours. To schedule a separate group tour of Wild Horse, please call 509-964-7815.
Join us for a 60 minute walking tour that explores the solar array, wind turbine blade, turbine generator and gearbox, and lets you look inside the base of an active wind turbine!
- Closed-toed shoes are REQUIRED.
- The tour covers a 1/2 mile on gravel trails. Tour participants with mobility issues can arrange vehicle access to the base of the turbine.
- Dress for the weather. Wind speeds average 17 mph and it is typically cooler on the ridge.
- All participants must sign a liability form. Minors must have the liability form signed by a parent or guardian to participate in the tour.
- Tours can be canceled or modified at any time due to inclement weather, high winds or any unsafe conditions.
Please review the tour liability form and tour checklist for a complete list of rules.
Presentations are available by appointment. The presentation covers renewable technology, economics, construction and siting, and takes 45 - 60 minutes.
The center features a conference facility with a meeting room accommodating 48 people. This area is used for wind and solar presentations to visiting schools, businesses and community groups. It can also be reserved for meetings and retreats. Large events such as weddings cannot be accommodated.
For more details, please read our Wild Horse Conference Room Amenities.
2023 Renewable Energy Center Events
Remembering the Crew of B-17 Bomber 42-29500
Join us as we remember the crash of a WWII B-17 bomber that occurred on March 29th, 1943.
When: April 1st
11 a.m. Short presentation on the recent documentation of the crash site All day Exhibit viewing
The crash location is within the wind facility boundary, and was recently surveyed to document this historic site. To commemorate the 80th anniversary of the crash, a new exhibit honors the 9 men lost in the accident, houses pieces of the B-17, and tells the history of the B-17 and WWII training in the area.
Run Like the Wind
Please join us for the Run Like The Wind Trail Running Festival at the Wild Horse Wind Facility!
When: April 30th
Run for Good Racing Company puts on a great event, with 5K, 10K, and 10 Mile options, winding along the trails, paths, and roads at Wild Horse. This race benefits the hard working volunteers of Kittitas County Search and Rescue, and helps fund needed supplies for the program. These races will be challenging, with a lot of elevation gain and a few tough trails, but gorgeous with views of Mt. Rainier, the Columbia River, and Eastern Washington. Our race motto is “Uphill, Into the Wind, Both Ways”!
You can also go on a guided wind turbine tour or wildflower walk, to further experience the awesome power of the wind and the beauty of the shrub steppe. Live music, refreshments, and great food await you at the finish line.
- Sign up required: Space is limited to 200 participants so sign up now at run-like-the-wind.com.
- Volunteers needed: Aid stations, kid’s race, registration, and kitchen volunteers needed.
Wildflower and Wind Power Walks
Join us while we explore the beauty of the shrub steppe in bloom!
When: Sat. April 29th and Sun. May 14th
10 a.m. Wind Turbine Tour 11 a.m. Wildflower and Wind Power Presentation 11:30 a.m. Wildflower and Wind Power Walk 2-3 p.m. Wind Turbine Tour 3-3:30 p.m. Wildflower and Wind Power Presentation 3:30-5 p.m. Wildflower and Wind Power Walk
Wildflower Walks are also available midweek by appointment from late-April through May.
- RSVP Required: Email email@example.com with party size and which session you would like to attend (morning/afternoon, tour, presentation, or walk).
- What to Bring: Wear sturdy closed toe shoes or boots and dress for both the wind and sun. It can still be quite chilly in the spring. Bring a water bottle, snacks, camera, hiking poles, or whatever else you will need to enjoy your walk.
- Distance: While our walks cover less than a mile, they will be on rocky uneven terrain, and may not be suitable for all visitors.
Wild and Whiskey History Tour
Join us as we explore the history of the Wild Horse Wind Facility on Whiskey Dick Mountain. Old wagon trails, encampments, moonshiners, and plane crashes, this ridge is rich in history to explore!
When: Sat. Jun 17th
9:15 - 10 a.m. Wind 101 Presentation 10 - 11 a.m. Wind Turbine Tour 11 a.m. - 2 p.m. History Tour with stops at Whiskey Dick Mountain, Wild Horse Spring, and the Pines.
- RSVP Required: Email firstname.lastname@example.org with party size.
- What to expect: Dress for hot weather and a few short hikes. Pack snacks, water, etc. You will drive your own vehicle on gravel roads to each tour stop.
- Plan on stopping by the Kittitas County Historical Museum in Ellensburg after your tour to learn more about local history, WWII, airway beacons, homesteaders, and more.
- The Wanapum Heritage Center: The center is intended to protect preserve and perpetuate the culture traditions and identity of the Wanapum of Priest Rapids. It is located along the banks of the Columbia River, near Priest Rapids Dam, on the ancestral grounds of the Wanapum.
The Wild Horse Wind Facility is located in Game Management Unit (GMU) 329 in eastern Kittitas County. PSE allows public hunting at Wild Horse during all legal hunting seasons that fall between April 1 and November 30.
HUNTING RESERVATION PERMITS ARE REQUIRED for hunting within the wind facility boundary. Hunting reservation permits are issued online only through WDFW's Hunt by Reservation Program. Hunting permits are no longer issued at the Wild Horse Renewable Energy Center (visitor center). Permits, maps and rules are all available online.
Reserve a hunting reservation permit
For more information about hunting at Wild Horse please call 509-786-1923 ext. 109 or 509-964-7813.
PSE offers special access opportunities to hunters with lower extremity mobility disabilities through a limited permit drawing administered by WDFW's Road Access Entry Program. If drawn for a permit, hunters will be issued a special use permit by PSE allowing access to drive into a designated closed or gated area where other hunters must walk in. Application submissions for the drawing begin the first week of June and must be submitted to WDFW by July 31 in order to be eligible for the drawing.
If not drawn for special access, disabled hunters must apply for a hunting reservation permit though WDFW's Hunt by Reservation Program if they wish to still hunt at Wild Horse and MUST follow the same rules as non-disabled hunters.
For more information about disabled hunting opportunities at Wild Horse please call 360-902-2349 or 509-964-7813.
FREE Hunter Breakfast
Please join PSE and the Kittitas County Field & Stream Club at the Wild Horse Renewable Energy Center from 7 a.m. - 10 a.m. the Friday before the Modern Firearm General Elk Season for a free hunter breakfast!
Lands within the Wild Horse Wind Facility are also open to non-hunting recreational activities such as hiking, birdwatching and horseback riding from April 1 – November 30 by written permission only.
RECREATION ACCESS PERMITS ARE REQUIRED for public recreation within the wind facility boundary. Recreation access permits are available online and at the Wild Horse Renewable Energy Center April-October 31st, 9:00-5:00pm.
Print out a recreation access permit online
For more information about non-hunting recreation at Wild Horse please call 509-964-7813 or 509-964-7815.
Want to know more? Read up with the resources listed below.
- American Wind Energy Association State wind industry fact sheets, U.S. Annual Market Reports, webinars, wildlife, permitting, and more.
- Renewable Northwest Projects Map View renewable energy facilities on a map, throughout WA, OR, ID, and MT, with information about capacity, owner, and stage of construction.
- Danish Wind Industry Association An in-depth look into generators, transmission, design, weather, manufacturing, and the grid.
- Vestas: Information on current Vestas wind turbine models and technology.
- Vestas E-Learning: Short cartoons about the wind-energy industry, construction of components, and the science behind the technology.
- Department of Energy Solar and wind information, renewables for your home, and industry updates.
- Wind Energy Education and Training Programs Wind energy education and training programs in the United States at community colleges, universities, and other institutions.
- U.S. Wind Speed Maps Color coded wind speed maps for each state.
- Wind Energy Curricula and Teaching Materials Curriculum resource list including KidWind, 4H, PBS, universities, and more.
- Solar Washington Information on solar in Washington for homeowners and businesses.
- Department of Energy Education Resources Student educational resources.