Bison (Bos bison)

a herd of bison munches on grass at sunset

Bison (Bos bison)

These massive mammals are a sight to see in Grand Teton National Park (GTNP). Bison are North America’s largest land mammal, weighing up to 2,000 pounds if they’re male, similar to the size of a larger car. They can also reach up to 35-40 mph running speed, so be sure to steer clear of these majestic animals. A paper in Journal of Wilderness Medicine looked at injuries caused by animas from 1978-1992 that occurred in Yellowstone National Park, a close neighbor north of GTNP. According to the paper, on average, 3.73 people were injured by bison each year. Visitors are urged to keep a distance of at least 25 yards from wildlife and up to 100 yards in the case of large animals (National Park Service).

If you want to find bison in the park, be sure to keep an eye out in the flat grassland areas but remember to be cautious and keep your distance. Going north on highway 191, just past Cunningham Cabin, the scenery will open up to a flat grassland where there is normally a herd of bison and cattle. If you are also taking a trip to Yellowstone NP, be sure to visit Lamar Valley as well! Although an older post on NPS, check out https://www.nps.gov/grte/blogs/bison-a-summertime-visitor-countdown-29-days.htm to learn more of the life history of bison!

Written by Anna Cressman
PC: Anna Cressman