If it’s September in Estes Park, chances are visitors will witness the “rutting” or mating of elk in nearby Rocky Mountain National Park. They’ll also hear the distinctive song that accompanies it.
Commonly known as bugling, the sound resonates throughout the town and indicates that fall’s cooler temperatures are well on their way. It’s the primary way male elk call to females for the seasonal mating ritual.
Visitor numbers increase during this time and well into October, as people come to witness a dominant bull round up his harem of females. Estes Park lodging fills up quickly through the fall, so it’s wise to make reservations as soon as possible.
The types of bugles vary in sound, pitch and length. It simply means that members of the herds are communicating with each other. As with many animal species, bulls fight amongst each other for the right to gather the harem and mate. Males who aren’t in the alpha position hang around the herd, but they