As many times as I have been to Jackson Hole, Wyoming, this was a first; getting up close and personal with the majestic elk on the National Elk Refuge that borders the town of Jackson. There is nothing like taking a sled or wagon ride out into the midst of the herd as they graze aimlessly. In some cases, the large beasts are just as curious about you as you are of them while your wagon moves along the flats on the outskirts of Jackson.
Thousands of elk spend their winter in the 24,700 acre preserve each year. To educate the public, officials of the Elk Refuge began offering visits out on a small section of the preserve. When there is plenty of snow, the tours go via horse drawn sled. When snow is scarce, the tours go with wagons.
The National Elk Refuge tours typically start in late November and go through early April. The 2014 season is no longer taking sleds but is using wagons onto the Elk Refuge until April 5th. Tickets can be purchased at the Jackson Hole Greater Yellowstone Visitors Center, which is located on HWY 26/89/191 just as you enter Jackson from the airport. Buses leave out daily every 20-30 minutes to take groups to an area just a mile or so up the road.
Chances are you will not just see elk while you are there. A bald eagle calls the heart of the tour area home and it is not unusual to see buffalo or foxes. Walk up rides are available but reservations are recommended.
Contact: 307.733.0277 or 1.800.772.5386. To contact via email, please use firstname.lastname@example.org
Children ages 5-12: $15
Children under 5: free
Private Sleighs: $350 per sleigh, 16-18 people maximum.