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Stay far away from the elk in Yellowstone National Park this fall

Sep 04, 2012 5:49 am

Skift Take

Between charging elks in Yellowstone and rodent diseases infecting campers at Yosemite, U.S. national parks are doing a good job reminding visitors that the great outdoors are wild, not Disneyland.

— Samantha Shankman

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Elk and other wildlife in Yellowstone National Park are beginning to leave the high country for lower elevations as they do every fall.

The most obvious change in Yellowstone occurs in Mammoth Hot Springs.

Elk Lying Down, Yellowstone National Park

Photo by Alberto Cueto.


Typically, several large bull elk venture into the Mammoth area in the fall to compete for the attention of cow elk.

Bulls are much more aggressive toward both people and vehicles this time of year and can be a threat to both people and property. Several vehicles are damaged by elk every year, and on occasion people are charged by elk and are injured.

Park regulations require visitors to stay a minimum of 25 yards away from most large animals and at least 100 yards away from bears.

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