Courtesy Scott Nielsen

The elk was struck by a vehicle Sunday and unable to survive. Read more

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Joe Yarkovich is a wildlife biologist for the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, and he’s also known as “The Elk Guy.” Since coming on full-time with the park in 2006, he’s been the go-to guy for the Smokies’ fledgling elk population. Read more


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Caara Hunter

At least 35 bears struck and killed in the Pigeon River Gorge in the last 10 months. Read more


The Great Smoky Mountains National Park has issued safety reminders for Elk Breeding season, also known as the rut. The season lasts from September 1 through October 31. Read more


On a recent Sunday my wife and I piled the dogs in the car and headed up Cove Creek Road in Haywood County, North Carolina, to see what was to be seen in the Cataloochee Valley. Read more


In the late afternoon and near dusk, individuals, pairs and small herds of elk materialize out of the dark forests that surround Cataloochee Valley’s expansive meadows to graze the open fields. Read more


Bull Elk

Holly Kays photo

The elk herd in Great Smoky Mountains National Park, first reintroduced in 2001, continues to grow and expand its presence outside park borders. Though there’s no hard figure, the herd now likely numbers somewhere around 150, up from 52. Read more



Samuel Hobbs photo

As the people jockeyed for a better view, park rangers paced the railing of a large pen below and called for quiet along the row of eager spectators. On cue, one of the rangers lifted the latch of a tailgate on a large horse trailer. Read more