Yes (West) Virginia, there are wild, free-ranging elk in your state. If you would like to see them, the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources (DNR) scheduled a series of guided tours.
“Our elk viewing tours offer an incredible opportunity to see these majestic animals and learn about the history of elk management in West Virginia,” said DNR Director Stephen McDaniel. “There aren’t many places where you can get this kind of experience, so folks should book their trip before seats sell out.”
The tours take place in the Tomblin Wildlife Management Area. Just like elk hunting, there is no guarantee of seeing elk but tour guides planned other activities to make the outings educational and enjoyable. Tours last approximately four hours, depending on wildlife viewing conditions. Participants are limited to ages 12 and older and can plan on walking or hiking up to three miles.
The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation assisted with the successful restoration of elk to their historic West Virginia range in 2016 and provided financial and volunteer support for a 2018 effort to relocate more elk to the state from Arizona. Go here to watch a short RMEF Films production about the cross-country trek.
Go here to view the tour schedule and for additional details.
(Photo credit: West Virginia Division of Natural Resources)