In Colorado: Herds and Hostility

Minutes after dawn on a chilly morning, high in the Rocky Mountains, Jeff Madison tethers his horse in a stand of aspen trees and moves slowly in a crouch past a beaver lodge, through grass still wet with dew. Below in a meadow at the edge of the forest, some 50 elk are feeding. Quietly, so as not to spook the animals, Madison sets up his 60-power spotting scope on a tripod and begins to count the elk, classifying them by age and sex.

Madison, 32, a Colorado state wildlife officer, or game warden, is worried. Too many bull elk are...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!