WIND CAVE NATIONAL PARK | Listen for the bugle cries of the Rocky Mountain elk as mating season arrives at Wind Cave National Park.
Throughout September, park rangers will offer brief interpretive programs about elk, before leading a caravan to a pullout to listen for the elk’s high-pitched whistle hearing the arrival of fall and the elk’s mating season.
Ranger program will be offered Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturday evenings through Sept. 30. Participants shoudl meet at the Elk Mountain Campground Amphitheater at 7 p.m. and are encouraged to bring a flashlight, a camp chair or blanket to sit on, and to dress warmly.
“Fall is a wonderful time to tour the park and enjoy our wildlife or the cave,” said Park Superintendent Vidal Dávila. “The call of a bugling elk is definitely one of the Black Hills’ more unique wild sounds. If you’ve never heard it before, we encourage you to come out and listen for it.”
To hear what the elk’s whistle sounds like go online to:
In addition to the elk bugling program, other fall ranger programs will include Natural Entrance and Garden of Eden Tours of Wind Cave throughout the day. Participants are encouraged to bring a light coat or sweater and good walking shoes. The Natural Entrance Tour lasts approximately 75 minutes and involves 300 stairs, most of which are going down. The Garden of Eden Tour lasts one hour and involves 150 stairs.
The park visitor center is open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. through Sept. 23 , and 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sept. 24 through Oct. 7 with tours at 9:30 and 11:30 a.m., and 1:30 and 3:30 p.m. Visitor Center winter hours begin Oct. 8 and are from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. with tours at 10 a.m., and 1 and 3 p.m.
For information, call 605-745-4600.