Big yet graceful, elk (Cervus elaphus) are one of my favorite animals to spot in the wild. They are, in fact, the most abundant large mammal found in Yellowstone National Park, and paleontological evidence suggests they have had a continuous presence there for at least a thousand years.
More than thirty thousand elk from about eight different herds summer in Yellowstone, and approximately twenty thousand spend the winter in the park. The type of elk that lives in Yellowstone is found from Arizona to northern Canada along the Rocky Mountain chain. In Wisconsin where I live, elk have been reintroduced to our great Northwoods, and the highlight of any road trip there is catching a glimpse of one of these imposing and handsome beings.
Watch the video below made for the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation by Scott McKinley Productions. Accompanied by music from Kenny G., it recently won the Best of Show award at the International Wildlife Film Festival in Missoula, Montana. The majority of the film was shot on location in Yellowstone National Park, Grand Teton National Park, and the National Elk Refuge in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.
In this week of March, as winter 2013 tries to hang on a bit longer across the country, it’s good to rest our shovel-weary muscles for a moment and take a look at the beauty the season truly does bring.