Every year, as Summer turns to Fall, that old familiar screeching bugle sounds off in the Wichita Mountains. The elk are getting antsy. It's the natural progression of any species, and a hauntingly awesome sound to hear no matter how often you've heard it. It's the sound of life, vibrancy, and a solid throw to health of the mountains.

Now, every year, the Wichita Mountains Visitor Center sets up small guided elk bugling hiking tours through the 'special access' areas of the refuge. Taking each visitor very close to these mating behemoths. That being said, this years tours filled up as they always do, very quickly... but that doesn't mean you have to miss out on some of SWOK's coolest nature.

After talking with some of the extremely helpful people at the WMWR Visitor Center, there are places with easy accessibility that will still allow you to hear the call of the wild. Places you can drive to, so even if your mobility is somewhat limited, you can still enjoy the bounty of nature and hear the elk bugle.

I would highly suggest stopping into the visitor center and talking to these helpful individuals. It's the big building just outside the Western refuge gates. You can't miss it.

If you want to get in on the ground floor for a spectacular guided tour next year, you might want to bookmark the US Fish & Wildlife Service webpage dedicated to it here.