For centuries Cody Yellowstone has been a natural gathering place. First to come was the wildlife: bison, deer, moose, mountain sheep, elk, grizzly bears, black bears, eagles and more — all easily seen in the vast landscapes of grass prairies, mountain slopes and wildflower meadows.

Wildlife Viewing

Wyoming is Wild! The Cody area is renowned for wide-open spaces and abundant wildlife. Wildlife plus distance equals safety for you and for wild animals. During your visit to the area keep these wildlife viewing tips in mind:

Woman watching elk across river

  • Never feed or approach wild animals—to do so can be dangerous for you and the animal!
  • Stay in your vehicle to view wildlife along the roadside—especially bears!
  • Young animals are rarely very far from their mothers—leave them alone.
  • Many animals do not show signs of stress and may become aggressive if approached too closely—keep your distance.
  • Do not surround, crowd, or follow an animal— it could result in injury to you or the animal.
  • Deer, elk, bears, and bighorn sheep are often observed near or on roadways—obey posted speed limits and keep a sharp eye during early morning and late evening periods.

Enjoy your visit and remember Wyoming’s Wildlife is Worth the Watching.

Northwest Wyoming Wildlife Viewing Tour Routes

  • Family viewing wildlifeSouth Fork of the Shoshone River- Hwy 291, SW of Cody.
  • Clark’s Fork – Hwy 120, N of Cody to Clark, WY.
  • North Fork of the Shoshone River- Hwy 14/16/20, W of Cody.
  • Sunlight Basin – Hwy 120, N of Cody to Hwy 296.
  • Wood River – Hwy 290, SW of Meeteetse.

Ralston Reservoir Wildlife Viewing Site

Follow signs north from Hwy 14, about five miles west of Powell. Viewing site has a viewing shelter and interpretive signs.

Beck Lake Braille Trail

Located on the west side of Beck Lake on the south side of Cody off of Hwy 120. A braille nature trail for the blind with braille signs and regular signs.

Meadowlark Audubon

Serving the four counties in the Big Horn Basin, the primary focus is the region’s resident and migratory bird populations and their survival.

Buffalo Bill Dam & Visitor Center

Located on Buffalo Bill State Park 5 miles west of Cody on Hwy. 14. Includes a wildlife exhibit and touring information. Open daily Memorial Day to Labor Day.

Clark’s Fork Fish Hatchery

Located about 29 miles north of Cody off of Hwy 120. Includes pre-arranged group tours on weekdays only. See the Scenic Byways section of Things to Do for more wildlife viewing opportunities.