Why Visiting the Lakota Wolf Preserve is A Must- Do!
TABLE OF CONTENTS
For my birthday, we planned a weekend getaway to the Delaware Water Gap. While planning the trip, I learned of the Lakota Wolf Preserve. I’ve always loved wolves and would jump at a chance getting see wolves in the wild or a preserve like this one. Located just about an hour and a half outside of New York City, the Lakota Preserve was, by far, the highlight of my trip! In fact, the experience was so surreal, I believe visiting the Lakota Wolf Preserve is a must-do if you are ever in the area!
Start of the Trip
We woke up Sunday morning and dressed in layers of clothing for the cold day ahead. All snug, we headed out to the Lakota Wolf Preserve. As we made our way up the driveway the sounds of howls increased our heart rate and excitement poured from our bodies. After registering and paying the $15 dollar entrance fee, we met with the owners Jim Stein and Becky Mace. They kindly shuttle bussed us up to the main grounds where 4 wolf packs call home. When we got off the bus, a white Timber Wolf ran swiftly in front of us behind the gate. To say I was in heaven would be an understatement!
I’ve uploaded a video of the wolves howling that was taken on my iPhone, so not the best quality but really cool to hear! Link Here!
Meet the Pack
For the next 70 minutes or so, Jim walked us through the grounds and educated us on wolf behavior, pack structure and what their preserve is all about. The grounds are a little over 10 acres divided into the 4 wolf packs. There were also 2 foxes and a bobcat to the right of the entrance. To keep the animals and viewers safe, two gates divided us and the wolves. We watched them play, run and howl! It was incredible to see them interact so freely as if we weren’t there.
Bobcat and Foxes
After Jim finished showing us the Timber, Arctic, British Columbian, and Tundra packs, Becky waited for us where the bobcat and two foxes resided. Becky then educated us on both amazing species. We learned that bobcats can spray about 10 feet to mark their territory. We even got a full demonstration as we jumped back from Bobby( the bobcat) aiming right at us! Bobcats are about 3 feet long, almost two feet high and weigh about 20 lbs. As cute as bobcats are, they are known to be able to take down a deer, so its best to keep your distance! Bobcats can even be found living in the wild in the Tri-State area.
Next, we learned about Ella, the Red Fox. One of my takeaways was the truth of the saying “sly like a fox”. In the wild when foxes have fleas, they look for deep water. They submerge themselves into the water until the fleas make their way to the foxes head. The fox will then point its head up and go further underwater leaving only his nose exposed until they all jump off! Sly fox indeed!
By the end of the tour, a smile was glued to my face and not just because it was freezing cold! Being able to see wolves up close in this type of environment made this an experience beyond words for me. With such a decline in habitat, the chances of getting to see wolves in the wild are dwindling in the US (excluding Alaska). This, alone, is a great reason why visiting the Lakota Wolf Preserve is so necessary for any animal lover! They also have a tour for serious wildlife photographers to get unobstructed views of the wolves in a stress-free environment.
I am usually pretty skeptical when it comes to animal tourism, however, I found the Lakota Wolf Preserve to be nothing short of amazing. For me, visiting the Lakota Wolf Preserve was an incredible experience! We could tell the animals were treated with such love and that Jim and Becky were clearly part of the pack. Over a mile away, Becky began to howl, and the next thing we knew all the wolves followed suit. Clearly, they know who’s the mama.
The backstory about the Preserve
Jim and Becky have worked extremely hard to make this dream happen and have dedicated their lives to caring for these incredible animals for over 15 years. They sold their home to live in an RV to be closer to the grounds. As they are actually a part of the pack, they have raised many of the animals from a very young age. The wolves at their preserve, although born in captivity, their mission was to give them a chance to live in a stress-free environment while giving them the feeling of living in the wild.
If you ever find yourself close to New York City and want a truly amazing experience with Grey Wolves, check out their website for an updated schedule on taking a tour! Visiting the Lakota Wolf Preserve is not only educational, but it’s definitely an experience you will always remember!
Some Wolf Facts:
- There are only 2 kinds of wolves. The Red Wolf and Grey Wolf, however, the Grey wolf family has 24 different subspecies.
Wolves will take any domestic puppy into their pack
There is one Alpha Female and one Alpha Male in each pack.
Alphas eat first and are the only ones who have puppies in the pack.
The lowest ranking member in the wolf pack is the omega. The omega is the shyest wolf of the pack.
Wolves only have puppies once a year. The female is pregnant for 63 days and the puppies will be born sometime in May.
There are many reasons wolves might howl. One type of howl is the alphas getting the pack together. Another is to show intruding wolf packs they have numbers. In the case at the preserve, they could be howling at a passing fire truck mistaking it for other wolves!
Thank you for reading about my experience visiting the Lakota Wolf Pack! I hope you found it educational and will consider checking out this amazing place! If you are planning to visit, please check their website for their tour days. Also, please make sure to give the utmost respect when visiting the animals and the property. If you enjoyed reading this, I would appreciate if you share it and/or pin it! It will help me continue to make free content to share with you here! For more posts check out my destinations page here!
– I have not been compensated for visiting the Lakota Wolf Preserve or writing this post in any way. This post comes from my personal feeling and amazing experience I had while there –