A bugling Colorado elk is a sight to behold. For people who live in Estes Park they may be almost a nuisance. For the rest of us, they are majestic and amazing animals. In October, hundreds of elk descend from the higher elevations and gather on the meadows of the Rocky Mountain National Park, where the males guard their harems. Satellite bulls circle the harems of the larger bulls, hoping for an opportunity to mate.
This 6×6 bull is in his prime, and is issuing a challenge to another bull, while his cows are waiting in the meadow. Smaller satellite bulls stayed just outside the edge of his herd. Other large bulls were bugling back from a distance.