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National Elk Refuge
National Elk Refuge

National Elk Refuge

star-5
154 Reviews

The Basics

The National Elk Refuge represents one of the best wildlife viewing opportunities from Jackson Hole. Visitors can choose to explore independently by driving along Refuge Road or join a guided tour of the land. Sleigh rides are popular in winter, while walking and biking tours occur in the summer.

The Jackson Hole and Greater Yellowstone Visitor Center, located in the southwest corner of the refuge, offers information on the history and habitats of the surrounding landscapes. History buffs should stop at historic Miller Ranch to learn about the first homesteaders to settle in the area. A visit to the refuge can also be combined with a tour of Grand Teton National Park.

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Recent reviews from experiences in Jackson Hole

star-5
Very enjoyable day.
Judy_D, Apr 2021
Grand Teton and National Elk Refuge Winter Day Trip
Seeing the elk and spotting moose, The views. The wagon ride into the Elk reserve was the highlight. Also enjoyed the big horn sheep. Brandon our guide was excellent!
star-5
Young and Inquisitive
Yvette_M, Mar 2021
Grand Teton and National Elk Refuge Winter Day Trip
Our guide, Hailey, was very knowledgeable and friendly. She was also patient with our young son, who had a lot of questions.
star-5
Trip of a lifetime!
Maureen_C, Mar 2021
Grand Teton and National Elk Refuge Winter Day Trip
The views were incredible. Our guide was extremely knowledgable and personable. He was very patient with my 11 year old grandson’s many questions. It was money well spent! I would do it again!
star-5
Do this tour
stuart_b, Mar 2021
Grand Teton and National Elk Refuge Winter Day Trip
Amazing experience for a newbie to an experienced visitor to jackson hole. Includes hours of looking for wildlife + a great lunch . A great day was had by all .
star-5
The day trip was so much...
gail_f, Mar 2021
Grand Teton and National Elk Refuge Winter Day Trip
The day trip was so much fun! Daniel was a great guide! He is very knowledgeable about the history of the area and we saw all kinds of wildlife. Highly recommend this trip!!
star-5
Highly recommend this tour!
SUZANNE_F, Feb 2021
Grand Teton and National Elk Refuge Winter Day Trip
I can’t say enough good things about the guide and tour. It was paced well and the guide was friendly and knowledgeable. Great value for money and a wonderful way to see the wildlife. Tour company does and excellent job. Out guide was the best.
star-5
Great tour!
Susan_C, Feb 2021
Grand Teton and National Elk Refuge Winter Day Trip
Awesome trip! We saw a lot of wildlife and our guide Neil was great. He was fun and very knowledgeable. I highly recommend this tour.
star-5
Great Guide!
NATHAN_N, Feb 2021
Grand Teton and National Elk Refuge Winter Day Trip
Kelsey was an awesome guide. Very informative and enthusiastic. Saw lots of animals! Wolves, elk, bison, eagle, big horn sheep. Tour of mountains was fantastic, geology and history educational.
star-4
Amazing adventure, but something you only do once.
Boyd_J, Jan 2021
Grand Teton and National Elk Refuge Winter Day Trip
Eventhough our guide was very informative about the area, history and animals in the area we feel the tour was overpriced what what it was. It was a great adventure but we will not do this again. On top of the $400 ticket price for two adults we were instructed to tip the tour guide at least 10%.
star-5
Worth every penny
Jaime_C, Jan 2021
Grand Teton and National Elk Refuge Winter Day Trip
Our tour guides were awesome. Their passion and knowledge of the wild life, area and history of the area was amazing. Very professional and would definitely recommend.
star-5
A must trip in Jackson Hole
JD_J, Jan 2021
Grand Teton and National Elk Refuge Winter Day Trip
Mark was an excellent guide. He has a sharp eye and was able to spot wildlife even while driving. He is very knowledgeable and welcomes questions.
star-5
Amazing day to see wildlife
Kimberly_S, Jan 2021
Grand Teton and National Elk Refuge Winter Day Trip
So amazing, we saw so many animals, the views were amazing h and Clint was first class as our guide. A must for Jackson hole

Things to Know Before You Go

  • The National Elk Refuge is a must-visit for families and wildlife enthusiasts visiting Jackson Hole.

  • Visit the refuge on a half-day tour, or combine it with Grand Teton National Park for a full day of wildlife viewing.

  • Keep a safe distance from wildlife, for both your safety and the animals’.

  • Dress in layers with sturdy shoes, and don’t forget to bring sun protection, even in winter.

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How to Get There

The entrance to the National Elk Refuge is just a mile from Jackson Hole. Most visitors drive there independently, though it’s also possible to join a wildlife watching tour with included round-trip transportation from Jackson Hole hotels.

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When to Get There

It’s possible to spot wildlife at the refuge year-round, but the best time for elk sightings is near dawn or dusk during the winter months, when some 5,000 elk come to the refuge to overwinter. If you visit during summer, ask at the visitor’s center for suggestions on where to spot elk.

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ElkFest

Each weekend before Memorial Day, the Jackson Hole community gathers in Town Square to celebrate ElkFest. Among the main events is an antler auction, where thousands of pounds of elk antlers collected by the National Elk Refuge staff are sold to benefit the US Fish and Wildlife Service and the Jackson District Boy Scouts.

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