Tours of new W.Va. elk preserve set for Sept., Oct. 2018

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A bull elk roams a meadow in Logan County in southern West Virginia (WV).

The West Virginia Division of Natural Resources will lead 20 guided tours of the Mountain State’s new elk-reintroduction site near Logan, West Virginia, in September and October 2018, according to Stephen McDaniel, director of the division.

Public tours will start at Chief Logan Lodge and include a visit to the Tomblin Wildlife Management Area, where elk from Kentucky and Arizona were released in 2016 and 2018.

“There is a good chance tourists will see an elk or even hear a bull bugle,” McDaniel said of the tours.

Young elk spring across a clearing.

“But even if they don’t, these tours are still something you don’t want to miss. The program is fun and informative — and the location and terrain of southern West Virginia is amazing!”

West Virginia’s last native elk was seen in Webster County in 1875, McDaniel said. Now about 90 free-roaming elk make up the growing herd that wander some of West Virginia’s most difficult mountain landscapes.

Led by Chief Logan State Park naturalist and biologist Lauren Cole, the tour is four-hours long and includes a program about the elk, their habits and habitat and the challenges and future of elk management.

Morning or evening tours are offered at 5:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. Advance registration is required and participation is limited to 13. The tour costs $30 for adults and $27 for kids 15 and younger.

Tickets include breakfast or late lunch, the educational program, transportation and a tour souvenir. An overnight package is available at Chief Logan Lodge for $170 (double occupancy) and includes tour tickets and dinner for two.

Ticket dates and times are not transferable for other dates. Program and tour is rain or shine. Participants must wear sturdy closed-toe shoes or boots and long pants. Participants may want to wear a light jacket and bring a walking stick and binoculars.

For reservations, call Chief Logan Lodge at 304-855-6100. For ticket and tour questions, email chiefloganlodge@wv.gov.

Chief Logan Lodge, near Chief Logan State Park, in Logan County, features a restaurant and conference center and a 75-room lodge.


2018 Elk Management Project Tour Schedule

Saturday, Sept. 8 — Morning
Sunday, Sept. 9 — Morning
Saturday, Sept. 15 — Morning
Saturday, Sept. 15 — Evening
Thursday, Sept. 20 — Evening
Sunday, Sept. 23 — Morning
Tuesday, Sept. 25 — Evening
Saturday, Sept. 29 — Morning
Saturday, Sept. 29 — Evening
Sunday, Sept. 30 — Morning

Saturday, Oct. 6 — Morning
Saturday, Oct. 6 — Evening
Sunday, Oct. 7 — Morning
Thursday, Oct. 11 — Evening
Saturday, Oct. 13 — Morning
Saturday, Oct. 13 — Evening
Sunday, Oct. 14 — Morning
Saturday, Oct. 20 — Morning
Saturday, Oct. 20 — Evening
Sunday, Oct. 21 — Morning

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