The Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife (WDFW) is inviting families to the Oak Creek Wildlife Area near Naches to view hundreds of elk that are being fed there.

The WDFW feeds elk in designated parts of South Central Washington every winter because the animals' range is largely fenced off during the colder months and their access to wild food sources is limited.

The specialized feeding combined with the fencing helps in sustaining elk populations while also protecting highly-valued agriculture, and gives agents the chance to monitor the elks' health and establish population numbers.

The feed sites also provide an excellent opportunity for the public to view the elk up close.

Feeding dates vary depending on weather conditions but the months of January and February are considered the best for viewing opportunities.

Public access on and around the feed site is closed from December 15 to May 1, but there great views of the elk available from the fence line at the Oak Creek Headquarters, which is also outfitted with restrooms and features a visitor's center with educational exhibits.

Guided tours on WDFW trucks are also offered on feeding days from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
The agency recommends calling ahead before planning your visit to Oak Creek. For contact details and more information, click here.

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