*A bull elk strikes a pose in the morning light on the National Elk Refuge. Credit: USFWS / Tony Hough, refuge volunteer / Pitchengine Communities photo* (Jackson, Wyo.) – With colder, winter-like weather settling into the Jackson Hole valley, wildlife managers expect to see an increase in movement of elk from summer to winter range lands. This seasonal migration may increase current hunting opportunities on the National Elk Refuge. Elk hunt management on the Refuge is a critical tool for achieving population objectives determined through a cooperative effort between the National Elk Refuge, Grand Teton National Park, and Wyoming Game & Fish Department managers. This year’s Refuge elk hunt began on October 17 and will run through December 18. National Elk Refuge hunters have four options for obtaining an elk hunting permit, beginning as early as mid–August. The application process is coordinated with the Wyoming Game & Fish Department, utilizing the State’s Private Lands Public Wildlife Access Program web site. For the remainder of this year’s elk hunt season, hunters can apply for alternate permits issued during weekly computerized draws. Individuals who were already successful in obtaining any elk permit for another hunt period may still apply for an alternate permit for a different week. Applicants begin the on-line process at http://bit.ly/1jjpFQL
A direct link to the on-line permit application is also provided on the elk
hunting page of the National Elk Refuge’s web site at
Hunters apply for an alternate permit between Friday at 9:00 am and Sunday
at 11:59 pm (Mountain Standard Time) for the upcoming hunt period.
Individuals designate during the application process if they want to be
considered for a Tuesday – Friday or a Saturday – Tuesday alternate permit
for the upcoming hunt period. The results of the weekly computerized random
draw for permits will be posted on the application web site by 11:00 am on
the following Mondays: November 9, November 16, November 23, November 30,
December 7, and December 14. The number of alternate permits issued will
vary, depending on hunter harvest rates and participation.
Later in the season, generally from late November through the remainder of
the hunt, daily field permits may be available on a first–come,
first–served basis. Hunters can call a recorded message at (307) 201-5437
to be notified if field permits are available. These are issued at a
specified location on the Refuge Road and are valid for the day of issuance
only. Decisions to issue daily field permits will be based on current
conditions; there is no guarantee daily field permits will be available.
Both alternate permits and daily field permits allow wildlife managers
flexibility to adjust the number of permits issued, responding to the
amount of current hunters and the dispersal of animals. This helps safely
manage the hunt while still achieving population objectives.
All hunters are required to obtain a copy of the National Elk Refuge 2015
Elk Hunting Information and Regulations handout .
In addition to application information, the handout includes specific
regulations, access and travel information, and harvest reporting. All
hunters should print the handout, referred to on the State’s web site as
“Ranch Rules,” when printing their on-line permission slip and harvest
report. The document is also available on the Refuge’s web link at
http://1.usa.gov/1Mo4mtX and at the following locations:
- Jackson Hole & Greater Yellowstone Visitor Center, 532 North Cache
- Wyoming Game & Fish Department Jackson Regional Office, 420 North
- National Elk Refuge Administrative Offices, 675 East Broadway Avenue
For further questions regarding Refuge hunt applications, please call the
Refuge Administrative Offices at (307) 733–9212, or the Wyoming Game and
Fish Department Jackson Regional Office at (307) 733–2321.