Gateway Gazette

Waterton Wildlife Weekend: September 23rd to 25th, 2016

elk-50430_960_720What’s kicking this time of year in the Waterton Lakes National Park? Elk, for one thing. Each year these majestic creatures descend upon the park from a variety of higher-in-elevation locations, to determine the who’s who of mating season rituals. The bulls can get pretty nasty with each other, thrashing their antlers against bushes, rolling in mud wallows, and attempting to out-bugle one another while trying to attract their mates. Sometimes these bulls can gather elk cow harems of up to 80 females, but the bulls may also be forced to defend these harems from other bull challengers.

In honor of this awesome yearly display, we have crafted the Waterton Wildlife Weekend. It’s one of the last weekends guests can camp in the park, so taking advantage of the opportunity to visit one last time before winter arrives is even greater incentive.

The weekend’s events include a series of walks, talks, and seminars on not just the gathering of the elk, but many of the park’s other wonders. Intrigued guests can sign up for anything from a hike guided by an ecologist who is sharing insight into the intricate workings each species’ inter-dependence upon one another, to learning to photograph the beauty of the night sky.

We have guest speakers such as elk ecologist Dale Paton, and gray wolf researcher Sarah Bassing. We even have bear expert Charlie Russell-son of the famous Canadian wilderness guide and author Andy Russell–available for an afternoon tea in his father’s home on September 25th.

Waterton boasts more than 250 species of birds, 60 species of mammals, 24 species of fish, and 8 species of reptiles and amphibians. Each of these are up for guests viewing and learning pleasure, all weekend long.

To find out more, go to: https://mywaterton.ca/about and follow the links for Wildlife Weekend 2016

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