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“Great Family Day Trip”

Lakota Wolf Preserve
Ranked #1 of 6 things to do in Columbia
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Reviewed February 26, 2012

I took my 5yr old son to this attraction of the mid-winter break. We loved it and learned so much information from the owners. The wolves, foxes, and bobcats are all well loved and cared after. You can see the passion the owners have for the conservation and care for these animals. There is a shuttle bus that takes from from the base to the preserve or you can choose to walk a short (less than 1/2 mile) walk though the well maintained trail. My son loved learning about the arctic, timber, and tundra wolves. He really got excited when they got them to howl...The whole tour group got in on the action. When it came time to visit the foxes and bob cats , they were just a short walk away and it was fun to watch them eat some treats while learning about them. My son got a kick out of the one that loved to eat cheese. After the 1:30hr tour you can choose to take the shuttle back down or walk down the trails which we did. He saw some deer along the way. There is a store at the base (part of Camp Taylor) where you an buy a snack. Def. a fun and educational day out.

Thank Pietrosmom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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249 - 253 of 278 reviews

Reviewed February 25, 2012

If you’ve never been just a few feet away from one of nature’s top predators then don’t miss this chance. You will see and hear these striking animals in their own environment and discover the meaning behind the name Lakota.

Thank mnteti
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 23, 2012

good half day visit. wolves are beautiful and haunting!

Thank jugs6686
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 7, 2012

We heard about Lakota Wolf Preserve from a conservation newsletter we get and decided to check it out. You don't need reservations on the weekend, but you do if you're going during the week. In the winter you have to call ahead to see if they're open or going to be open because the preserve is on top of a ridge at the end of a very steep, winding road, so if it is snowy or icy they won't open--too dangerous. They do two tours a day and each one lasts around 90 minutes. You park at a campground parking lot and pay your admission fee there, then hop in the shuttle bus for the trip up to the preserve (or you can walk....it's not that far but it was windy and cold when we were there so we took the bus).

The purpose of the Lakota Wolf Preserve is to give wolves that have been bred in captivity and who have had bad living conditions (like being stuck in some little cage in a road side zoo) a place to live out their lives as naturally as possible. When you get off the bus the guide will lead you upslope about 100 feet so that you are fairly close to the three enclosures (Arctic wolves, Tundra wolves, and Timber wolves). Then the guide gives an incredibly well-presented talk about wolves and wolf ecology and in the process they debunk a lot of myths humans have about wolves. For example, they are almost pathologically afraid of human beings. Normally they would run and hide from us. But the preserve has to generate some money to pay their bills, so the guides have worked with the wolves to get them to accept humans and so the guides can toss treats over the fences and wolves will come close to the fences to eat, so we can see them.

The wolves are beautiful! They just have this quiet majesty to them and even though they look like big dogs you can see and sense the wildness in them. Everyone in our group was really impressed with them.

After hanging with the wolves you go over to another area and another guide displays two of their three bobcats and a pair of red foxes. Again, these are rescued bobcats, like the wolves are rescue wolves. Someone had these bobcats and tried to make them into house pets (really really bad idea) and had them de-clawed! But because you just can't have a bobcat as a house pet as a practical matter (they pee EVERYWHERE and their pee STINKS) they gave them up. Bad news is that without claws they couldn't be released back into the wild (bobcats are native to the Northeast) because they need them to live. So they now get to be the pampered guests at Lakota. The bobcats are beautiful and so incredibly graceful. Even though it was getting chilly, everyone stayed to see the bobcats and foxes. Again, the guides are very knowledgeable and give excellent mini-lectures about the animals and their habitats and habits in the wild.

It's not a zoo....unless you've seen a zoo where the wolves have 10 acres to run around in...and it's not a breeding facility. But it is a great place to see wolves, bobcats and foxes up close and personal and learn all about them at the same time. We had a great time.

One caveat...if you have little kids I would avoid going in the winter. LIttle kids get cold fast and the ones in our group were obviously getting uncomfortably chilly toward the end of the visit.

4  Thank John G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 1, 2012

Up close to the wild. Worth the trip out! The wolves are well kept and cared for. Great other animals there as well.

1  Thank jerseyaruba
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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