Wildlife Conservation Workshop Itinerary

Workshop Agenda (subject to change)

This exclusive trip inside Yellowstone National Park gives President's Council members a first-hand look at Defenders' conservation work. 

Monday, August 15

Defenders’ staff members greet workshop participants at Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport Bozeman airport with lunch and transportation to the Yellowstone Association Institute’s Buffalo Ranch. The ranch is located in the heart of the Lamar Valley in the northeastern corner of the park, where wolves, bison, elk and grizzlies roam. Our workshop commences with a welcome dinner and orientation.

Tuesday, August 16

We depart at 6 a.m. for the first of many wildlife viewing opportunities, returning to the ranch later in the morning. Following lunch, we hike up to the historic Rose Creek wolf acclimation pen, where we learn more about the events related to the reintroduction of wolves to Yellowstone. 

Wednesday, August 17

We start our day with more early-morning wildlife viewing. Back at the ranch, we hear from Defenders’ Northern Rockies staff about our work to promote coexistence between wolves and livestock in the region. After lunch, we hike along Specimen Ridge and enjoy sweeping views of the Lamar Valley below you as you learn more about the area’s geology and ecology. Later in the day, participants can take an optional field trip to an abandoned wolf den. 

Thursday, August 18

After a final morning of wildlife viewing, we convene for a review of Defenders’ plans to advance wildlife conservation in Washington, D.C. and a general update on Defenders’ current work. Later in the afternoon, we hear from wolf reintroduction expert Doug Smith, project leader for the Yellowstone Gray Wolf Restoration Project, to learn about the wolves in the park and the changes in park ecosystem dynamics since the reintroduction.  The evening concludes with a closing dinner and discussion. 

Friday, August 19

After breakfast, we depart Yellowstone for the Bozeman airport. 

Participants should be able to walk at least two miles over uneven terrain. Altitudes within the park range from 5,200 to 11,300 feet.