Warning: Elk Calving Season, Elk Can Be Aggressive
Female (cow) elk are defensive of their newly born calves. As people approach, a cow may charge and/or rear up and lash out with her front legs. For your safety, STAY 500 FEET AWAY from elk, at all times. More »
Davison Road Maintenance begins 7/7/2014. Expect delays.
Beginning July 7, road crews will be grading sections of Davison Road between the hours of 8 am and 4:30 pm. Visitors to Gold Bluffs Beach and Fern Canyon should expect 30 minute delays.
The Roosevelt elk (), is the largest of the six recognized subspecies of elk in North America; they once occurred from southern British Columbia south to Sonoma County, California. Today Roosevelt elk in California persist only in Humboldt and Del Norte Counties, and western Siskiyou County.
Seven elk herds call Redwood National and State Parks home, although at times these herds become loose aggregations of smaller groups. General herd locations are the Crescent Beach area, Gold Bluffs Beach and Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park, Elk Meadow, Lower Redwood Creek, park lands in the Orick Valley, and the Bald Hills. The Bald Hills herd is by far the largest in parks, numbering around 250 animals. The other herds range in size from approximately 10 to 50 animals.
Elk management in Redwood National and State Parks mainly consists of keeping track of herds seasonally, especially during calving season (late May through June), and during the fall rut (late August through October), when elk are more likely to become aggressive toward humans. Park staff respond to any reports of close encounters between elk and humans.
Learn more about Your Safety in Elk Country
Did You Know?
Elk once ranged over most of the United States from Maine to New Mexico. By 1860, the eastern elk had been eliminated by hunters. By 1912, about 124 Roosevelt elk remained in northern California. Prairie Creek Redwood State Park became an elk refuge in 1923 where elk are common today.