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National Parks: Yellowstone

A forgotten explorer's route leads to off-trail, high-peak adventure and bona fide solitude.

Q: How many packs in the park? Where do you hunt?

There are 91 wolves in 11 packs, according to the bean counters in the weird hats. Six more are “non-pack”—proverbial lone wolves, sad but badass. Hank Williams Jr. wrote a song about it. The Mollies Pack (16 members) is the biggest—seven are just year-old pups. They hunt north of Yellowstone Lake in the rolling terrain between the Howard Eaton and Astringent Creek Trails. Most of the other packs hunt the north and central sections (less mountainous). Eighty percent of our kills are elk; the rest are bison, deer, moose, pronghorn, bighorn, goose, eagle, coyote, fox, and even other wolves. But you didn’t hear that from me.

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