Evening of the Elk Walks
in partnership with Pitkin County Open Space & Trails
As the days grow short, the visions of summer are replaced by wisps of snow on the peaks, golden quaking aspens, and the urgency of winter… Each Fall the North Star Preserve hosts one of nature’s truly magical rituals, the Rocky Mountain Elk Rut. The sanctuary the preserve provides, creates the perfect environment for these mountain monarchs who fill the autumn air with the shrill music of elk bugles. These sounds represent battles for herd dominance and perpetuate the survival of the species. Local elk enthusiasts Will Cardamone and Ryan Smalls will share their passion and knowledge about the elk during these special evenings on the preserve. Carefully thought out these low-impact outings will attempt to get in and out of the preserve unseen by the animals, yet getting close enough for a unique wildlife experience.
This class requires advance registration to ensure appropriate planning for the field experience. This class meets at the Main North Star parking lot, 1.65 miles from the intersection of Main/Hwy 82 and Original Street (wildlife viewing platform parking lot). Other details will be communicated with registered participants closer to the class.
About the Instructors:
A true ACES native, Will Cardamone was born and raised on the shores of Hallam Lake and in the wilderness surrounding Aspen. Passed down from his parents (and ACES founders!) Jody and Tom, Will brings the authenticity of a true naturalist which is etched in his DNA. Growing up in the Elk Mountains he developed a passion for elk that is second to none. He will emerge from a solid month of living with the elk deep within the wildest places just in time to share his adventures and wapiti insights with you on the North Star Preserve.
Ryan Smalls lives, breathes and behaves like an elk during this magic time each Fall. He understands and appreciates these majestic animals to their core. When not an elk, Ryan is a regular human being who happens to be born and bred right here in Aspen. He works and lives in Aspen and shares his passion for wild things with his wife Anda and their kids Zala and Luka. When he turns into elk, the family goes looking for him in the woods often.