In the Refuge

Two horses and a sleigh bring me here to the Elk refuge. Around Jackson there’s more than 17,000 elks gathered in the Hole, the flat area made up by sediments left by the glaciers a long time ago. We are at 6,300 feet, not so high really, but it gets so cold that the government created a Refuge for the elks, to provide them with enough grass and lichen to last through the the thick of the winter. The Refuge opens up to them on December 15th. Before that, they’re on their own for food. Once the Refuge opens, the elks stay in the area until the March thaw.