Release Date: May 14, 2014
BUFFALO, N.Y. – Fly fishing for native trout on one of America’s most scenic and untouched rivers. Up-close in-person observations of wolves, grizzly bears and rare birds in their native habitat. Sleeping in spacious log cabins in a town resembling a movie set.
All this while learning firsthand how species interact and thrive in the beauty of the country’s first national park.
It’s the summer trip of a lifetime, and it’s part of an ambitious and unforgettable educational program organized by the University at Buffalo’s College of Arts and Sciences.
“Mega Fauna and Predation in Yellowstone National Park” will take 12 people to Silver Gate, Montana, for 11 days and 10 nights of guided tours, observations and hands-on activities that showcase one of the country’s most famous and beautiful natural environments, all narrated by UB experts and special guests who have spent their lives studying nature and wildlife.
“Each day we will observe wildlife, including wolves, grizzly bears, coyotes, bison and rare birds, while visiting geyser basins, habitat recovery areas, wolf reintroduction pens, and old wolf dens,” says Joseph C. Allen, instructor and trip leader who has been a lecturer at UB for 20 years in the Environmental Studies Program.
“My favorite part of the trip is showing fortunate people not only the beauty of our nation's first national park, but the interaction of predator and prey species along with the recovery of ecosystems that have long been under siege.”
The trip, limited to 12 guests, combines pristine natural observations with technology enhancements. Activities include hiking, fly fishing, exploring rustic towns, historic and natural sites such as geysers and wolf dens and lodges, and extensive wildlife observation of native animals including wolves, bears and bison.
“I’m excited about not only showing people the park and it's animals,” says Allen, “but a chance to show them how to fly fish for native trout on America's only wild and scenic river, the Clarks Fork of the Yellowstone.”
The trip starts July 28 and ends Aug. 7. Home base is Silver Gate, a town just outside Yellowstone National Park. Those on the Yellowstone summer workshop stay at Silver Gate Cabins, spacious and well-appointed log cabins that accommodate two to three guests. Each cabin includes a bathroom, kitchen and refrigerator for comfortable living.
The cost of the trip is $2,350, which includes all lodging, park admission, equipment rental, guest speakers, three working lunches or dinners and transportation within and around the park. Travel costs to Bozeman International Airport, as well as food outside of the three working meals are not included.
This year’s special features include high-end photography equipment that stream photos and videos directly to personal electronic devices.
The trip also promises to be a singular travel and educational experience with experts who have been studying wildlife there for many years. And previous guests of Allen’s 2012 Yellowstone visit returned with rave reviews.
"Seeing all of this has changed my life," one said.
"I never realized nature was so complicated as well as harsh," another said.
"I feel as if I have witnessed nature on the National Geographic channel,” said another.
To register: https://www.ubevents.org/event/yellowstone2014.
For photographs, tour highlights and an article in the Buffalo News about the trip, go to: http://www.acsu.buffalo.edu/~jcallen/.