Bison Quest Wildlife Immersion Week
Building Wildlife and Bison Water Sources
There are a number of studies and habitat improvement projects going on here at Wild Echo Bison Reserve. While we love having our "vacation guests", the real improvements on Wild Echo Bison Reserve happen during our Wildlife Immersion Weeks. Join us for our small groups of 4 to 8 people to learn about wildlife related projects. Some of these include building exclosures around important wildlife habitat, habitat manipulation, breeding bird censuses, mammal and bird behavioral studies (bison, yellow bellied marmot/golden eagle interactions, cavity nesting bird feeding studies) and bird and mammal population studies on, and near, the Reserve. So, for those of you who want more than a "typical vacation", and want to actually partake in collecting data for wildlife studies, for those who want to make the "wild" world a little better while learning about it, for those who want to be part of something bigger, then our Bison Quest Wildlife Immersion Week is for you. Join us for a week of the ultimate wildlife experience.
Studying Pocket Gopher Activity and Grass Production
And after our 3 days of liveing the bison and wildlife here, we'll take you on a complimentary guided trip to the magical and fascinating place called Yellowstone National Park (see description of trip on Yellowstone National Park page under Bison and Wildlife Adventure Vacation).
Bison Behavioral Studies
So if this sounds like your kind of vacation, then plan on joining us for one of our scheduled weeks in June, August or September. If one of our scheduled dates doesn't work for you, check with us - sometimes we add new weeks as the summer progresses.
Cavity Nesting Bird Study
Encouraging Forest Regeneration (left)
Monitoring Bluebird and Swallow Nest Success (right)
Scheduled 2012 Bison Quest Wildlife Immersion Weeks
IMMERSION ITINERARY (PDF)
22 through 27 July
12 through 17 August
16 through 21 September
Our Immersion week can be guaranteed entirely private if there are four or more in your group and is ideal for families with children, or a group of friends. You can schedule your own week for any dates that we have open. Rates and itineraries are the same as quoted for the scheduled immersion weeks.
Sunday: Pick folks up from the Bozeman airport or hotel by 2 pm and head up to Wild Echo Bison Reserve. To begin your journey into the world of the bison, we will stop for a picnic lunch at Madison Buffalo Jump State Park before heading on to Wild Echo Bison Reserve.
Monday through Wednesday: We will spend our days participating in wildlife and bison projects. These studies are varied and dependent on the time of year, but we do keep them fun and none of them will be physically exhausting. We will work on at least one different project daily, so you will be exposed to a variety of studies and types of jobs that a wildlife reserve requires to keep it up.
Thursday and Friday: After our 3 days of living with the bison and wildlife, we will take you on our Yellowstone National Park Overnight Tour.
Rates for Bison Quest Wildlife Immersion Weeks
$1975/person for Sunday through Friday, total of 6 days and 5 nights
The above rate includes all transportation, food and lodging on the Reserve, all Reserve activities, and use of our equipment (including binoculars, telescopes, backpacks, etc). It also includes a guided trip to Yellowstone National Park including transportation, entrance fees and equipment. Lodging and meals in the Park are not included, although we will make all necessary reservations for you.
Frequently Asked Questions About the Wildlife Immersion Week
How many participants are in residence for the Immersion Week? Our groups will be a minimum of four. We allow no more than eight guests per week.
I'm only one person - can I still sign up for the Immersion week? By all means, join us. The Wildlife Immersion Week has been set up quite differently from our private vacations. We still have small groups, but you will have the opportunity to get to know new like-minded people from anywhere in the world.
Where do we stay? There are 2 cabins (sleep up to 5 people each) and two tipis (sleep 2 each). You will share one of the accommodations with one to three other guests (same sex). Usually we have one cabin for women and one for men. A tipi is available if a couple would like to have a separate accommodation. See accommodations page. We will book lodgings in YNP and will add the cost to your vacation (usually around $70/person depending on what accommodations are available when we book).
Where do we get our food? Food is provided while on the Reserve (see Natural and Organic Montana meals and snacks). All guests will be expected to assist with cooking and kitchen clean up. Meals in Yellowstone Park are not included.
How many days, and hours, do we work? First of all - it's hardly work! While we have plenty of physical work available (cutting rails, piling slash, etc for those of you who want to try your hand at some of the hardcore jobs), most of our work involves hiking to check on, assemble or clean out bird houses (for Kestrels, Saw-whet owls, woodpeckers, Bluebirds, etc.), studying bison behavior, and participating in on-going wildlife studies here at the Reserve. Plan on working about 6 hour days, Monday through Wednesday, although it may vary depending on weather and other conditions.
What if I don't know anything about wildlife or plants? That's what we're here for! We'll will teach you how to identify various plants, birds and mammals, as well as how to use the equipment that biologists typically use to census the wildlife that we work with. All we ask is that you come with a love of wild things, and a desire to learn more about them. We'll teach you the techniques.
What can we do after work? Each evening we will offer at least one Bison Quest activity mentioned in the Bison and Wildlife Adventure Vacation for those who wish to participate. Activities may include horseback riding, telescope stargazing, 4x4 evening wildlife safaris, bison interaction experience, sweat lodge, wood fired hot tubbing, etc. (Except for the trip to YNP, all activities offered will be on the Reserve.)
When and where do you pick us up at the beginning of our week? All interns will be picked up from either the Bozeman airport or hotel by 2pm on Sunday afternoon. If your flight is coming in later than that, then we suggest that you fly in on Saturday and stay at a Bozeman hotel where we can pick you up on Sunday. All guests should make reservations with a hotel in Bozeman for their return on Friday evening. We will drop you off there around 6pm upon our return from the Park.
Where do we stay in Yellowstone National Park? During the scheduled weeks, we are able to make reservations far in advance so you will usually be staying at cabins inside the Park. If they are not available for some reason, then we will stay in accommodations near the Park boundary. All accommodations are planned for double occupancy and will be added to the price of your vacation. Single accommodations may be available upon request.
We think that our "Wildlife Immersion weeks" are lots of fun, but it does involve gaining wildlife work experience. If you want to be waited on, sit around and sunbathe, or have a resort experience, then our Wildlife Immersion Weeks aren't for you and you might find the Bison Quest Private Adventure Package more to your liking. Our Wildlife Immersion weeks are for the adventurous, the curious, the thinkers ... for those who want to make a difference in the wild world around us.
All guests must be:
- 16 yrs or older and accompanied by a parent if under 18 yrs.
- In good physical shape, able and willing to try something new.
All guests are expected to behave in a professional and cooperative manner.
We reserve the right to return guests to Bozeman at anytime if their behavior compromises the safety or general performance of the team.
Bison Quest Adventure Vacations
Wild Echo Bison ReserveP.O. Box 890