“The rut is on and this Bull Elk is horny and angry. Don’t sit there, drive away fast and loud. This poor guy couldn’t because of all the traffic.”
Wild footage out of Alberta, Canada where a bull elk in the throws of the rut rammed a passing Hyndai SUV on a highway near the town of Jasper. I’d like to be a fly on the wall when this person tries to explain the damage to their insurance company.
JASPER NATIONAL PARK: The elk rutting season has begun and will last until mid-October.
What you need to know
- Keep at least 30 metres away from all elk and never get between a male and the females
- Bull elk become extremely aggressive protecting their harems during the mating season
- Do not park your vehicle between a male and the females; elk may charge at your vehicle, which may result in damage
Tips on how to avoid and handle elk encounters
- Travel in a group
- Watch for elk at all times and detour around them
- If possible walk around elk on the high side of a slope or up-hill
- Stay back at least 30 metres
- Keep your dog on a leash at all times
- An unleashed dog may prompt an elk to become aggressive as they view the dog as a predator (wolf or coyote)
- Carry pepper spray, a walking stick or an umbrella as protection
- Act dominant if an elk gets too close
- Raise your arms or any big object (jacket or umbrella) to make yourself appear larger, maintain eye contact, and never turn your back or run
- Climb a tree or keep an object, like a tree or large rock, between you and the elk
- Back slowly out of the area
- Warn other hikers of an elk ahead and report the incident immediately to Jasper Dispatch at 780-852-6155
- If you are knocked down or fall, get up and try to move to cover or use an object to protect yourself
- Do not play dead
Report all elk encounters to Jasper Dispatch at 780-852-6155.