As happens all too frequently, a tourist walked right up to an elk and started snapping photos, seemingly oblivious to the danger they were in. Fortunately for himself and all gathered, the elk chose not to charge, although it gave the man several warnings to back off.
The clip below shows a tourist in the Canadian Rockies, according to the video’s location. The man seems to lack common sense as he walks up to the massive wild animal. He stands within a few feet of the grazing animal while taking pictures. The elk steps forward and reels its huge antlers down at the ground, giving the man a warning.
The man steps back barely, and stays in front of the animal. After doing it a second time, the man starts to run away from the animal, although he continues videoing as he retreats.
“Excuse me, sir, run!” the person filming yells. As the man runs back, you can see him smiling and laughing. The woman admonishes him. “Go, it’s not funny. Get,” she says, urging him to walk further uphill and away from the animal.
“Someone’s gonna die,” she says. The man turns back toward the elk and continues filming despite coming close to getting run over or gored.
People React to Man Getting Too Close to Elk
Apparently, the video was filmed during elk rutting season, which is the worst time to approach a bull elk. At this time, they become aggressive with humans and other bulls as their body becomes flooded with hormones.
During rutting season, males attempt to dominate others to earn mating rights. Bulls will become particularly aggressive and release powerful pheromones, clashing with each other. They also display their muscular antlers, necks, and bodies prominently.
The owner of the video wrote the following caption:
“I’m just here to remind you that Bull Elk are incredibly unpredictable and aggressive at this time of year. Stay in your car and never approach them.”
The man may have walked away with a few good snapshots, but he’s extremely lucky to have walked away with his life. Plenty of Instagram users online discussed just how dangerous the situation was, and they did not mince words.
“People are so arrogant and stupid,” one user wrote.
“Play stupid games win stupid prizes…my money is on the elk,” one commenter said. “Another idiot tourist who got lucky and did not get what he deserved.”
Elk can weigh up to 750 pounds, and the huge elk in the video looked like he wasn’t far off from that mark.
Wildlife experts advise that tourists in National Parks remain at least 50 yards away from all elk, regardless of the season. Thankfully, no one was injured.