A small part of a herd of 300 or so elk on Ayers Meadow in the Frank Church Wilderness in July, Central Idaho. This has always been great elk country, but several years ago cattle grazing in the drainage was bought out, so now these public lands have more elk than ever. Idaho –mule and white-tailed deer, moose, elk, bighorn sheep, mountain goats, lynx, wolverine, pronghorn antetope, wolves, cougar , bobcats, black and grizzly bears, and a state where the public owns more than 60% of the land.

Don’t let the privatizers, the political dividers, or the industrial interests ever take it away from you. Elk on Ayers Meadow-Frank Church Wilderness

About The Author

Ralph Maughan

Dr. Ralph Maughan is professor emeritus of political science at Idaho State University. He was a Western Watersheds Project Board Member off and on for many years, and was also its President for several years. For a long time he produced Ralph Maughan's Wolf Report. He was a founder of the Greater Yellowstone Coalition. He and Jackie Johnson Maughan wrote three editions of "Hiking Idaho." He also wrote "Beyond the Tetons" and "Backpacking Wyoming's Teton and Washakie Wilderness." He created and is the administrator of The Wildlife News.

6 Responses to Central Idaho elk, pride of the state

  1. Greg Capito says:

    Grizzly bears in central Idaho’s Frank Church wilderness? Curious, has this been confirmed?

    No I was writing about Idaho in general. The grizzlies are north in the Selkirks and just west and SW of Yellowstone Park. Ralph

  2. Alan says:

    Brings back memories of four great days spent at the Fir Creek Campground near Bruce Meadows in June 2004. We watched 150-or-so head feeding behind the airstrip and even thought for a moment we were watching a wolf (which turned out to be a sandhill crane).

  3. gerg says:

    Don’t let the privatizers, the political dividers, or the industrial interests ever take it away from you.


  4. Eric T. says:

    But what about the beetles? Who is going to protect us from the beetles?

  5. Ralph Maughan says:

    Are you serious? Perhaps. If not, good joke!

    The dead trees in the background were perfectly green and died in a forest fire in 1988.

  6. Eric T. says:

    Tongue firmly planted in cheek.



‎"At some point we must draw a line across the ground of our home and our being, drive a spear into the land and say to the bulldozers, earthmovers, government and corporations, “thus far and no further.” If we do not, we shall later feel, instead of pride, the regret of Thoreau, that good but overly-bookish man, who wrote, near the end of his life, “If I repent of anything it is likely to be my good behaviour."

~ Edward Abbey