Meeker is well-known for hosting one of the largest elk herds in the world.  This makes it easy to spot an elk if you take a drive in any direction from town, especially if you drive up the Flat Tops Trail Scenic Byway along County Road 8.

Flat tops scenic byway

Backroads in Meeker, Colorado ~ Flat Tops Scenic Byway

Other wildlife can be seen in any direction as well.  For example, driving just 1.5 miles south of town on County Road 13 will take you by the Meeker Golf Course, which usually plays host to a myriad of wildlife, including some very large mule deer bucks.

Mule deer buck; photo courtesy of Michelle Cox Photography, LLC

One of the most surefire ways to see any type of wildlife is to look in the cottonwoods along the river for bald eagles or in the willows along the creeks for an elusive moose.

Bald eagle pair; photo courtesy of Dona Hilkey

A great route is a drive east of Meeker, turning onto County Road 8 which will take you along the top of Flat Tops Trail Scenic and Historic Byway. Before you head out, be sure your gas tank is topped off.  Get some dinner or takeout from any of our restaurants and book a stay in the area since it is a lengthy drive into the wilderness.

Bull moose feeding in the willows; photo courtesy of Toni N. Francis

Forty-one miles up County Road 8, take a right-hand turn onto Forest Service Road 205 (F205).  A 12 mile drive up F205 will deliver you into the arms of Trappers Lake with an opportunity to spot an often-seen cow moose and her babies in the pond right beside the road near Trappers Lake Lodge.  Just be sure to keep a safe distance as moose can be very aggressive and attack if they feel threatened.

Bugling elk on the South Fork; photo courtesy of Dona Hilkey

If you are around the Meeker area in September don’t miss the opportunity to hear elk bugling. From County Road 8 turn onto County Road 10 and drive up the South Fork of the White River.  Park along the side of the road shortly after you cross the river.  Be sure to turn off your engine to hear the symphony that tends to begin just before sunset.


Big Game Hunting


Be aware, people often confuse elk and moose.  They are both large animals, when fully grown.  If you spot a large herd of animals, it is most likely a herd of elk.  Moose often hang out alone.  Moose also have a darker brown body while elk are a lighter color of reddish brown with a light tan rump.  Elk antlers tend to be longer with spindly points while moose antlers are shaped like the palm of a hand with smaller points surrounding them.  Seeing either one of these majestic animals is a treat.