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Animal Lovers: Add the Wolf Sanctuary in PA to Your Bucket List

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Wolf on rock in Wolf Sanctuary in PA

According to the International Wolf Center, the gray wolf was on the endangered species list for decades. In October 2020, officials removed the species from the Endangered Species Act. However, the International Wolf Center states, “In the contiguous 48 states, the gray wolf currently occupies only about 10 percent of its former range. The Wolf Sanctuary, PA, aims to fix this.

Most of the gray wolf’s former habitat in these 48 states is unsuitable for wolves, and probably never will be suitable, due mainly to human encroachment.” The Wolf Sanctuary, PA, seeks to help the public better understand these incredible creatures. They provide a haven for these wolves to grow and thrive.

Let’s learn more about why you should visit the Wolf Sanctuary in Lititz, Pennsylvania, soon!

Where Is the Wolf Sanctuary, PA?

Resting in Lititz, Pennsylvania, the Wolf Sanctuary is in the heart of Pennsylvania, Dutch country. It’s on over 80 acres of woodlands and has protected gray wolves and wolf-dogs for over 40 years.

Speedwell Forge County Park is west of the sanctuary, while the Speedway Forge Lake winds south and southeast. The Wolf Sanctuary is about a mile south of Interstate 76, the Pennsylvania Turnpike, running west to east along the southern region of Pennsylvania.

What Is the Wolf Sanctuary?

Because of folklore, cultural traditions, and numerous myths about wolves, people have misunderstood these creatures for centuries. At the Wolf Sanctuary, PA, the staff seeks to dispel those myths and educate visitors about the species.

Global conservation efforts have increased as wolf populations decrease. Diminishing forests are the primary reason for their decline, but overhunting is also a key factor. Yellowstone National Park was home to almost 200 gray wolves, but now there are less than 100.

How Many Wolves Are at the Wolf Sanctuary, PA?

The Wolf Sanctuary, PA, is home to 50 gray wolves and wolf dogs. On the website, you can meet the wolves and learn about their characteristics and unique traits. If you visit in person, you can see them and call them by name. You can even participate in the Adopt-a-Wolf Program, the Wolf Sanctuary sponsors.

For example, Cheyenne came to Pennsylvania from New York. She shares her territory with Yogi, a young male who loves to jump, pounce, and chase his female friend. You can see Sunrise with his watchful gleam and visit Sky, the retiree. The Wolf Sanctuary staff even pays tribute to the dozens of wolves who passed away while in the refuge’s care.

Traveler’s Tip: Get out into the great outdoors by using this guide on how to Plan Your Perfect Visit to Laurel Hill State Park.

Wolf howling to pack in Wolf Sanctuary in PA

Which Tours Are Available at the Wolf Sanctuary?

When visiting the Lancaster, Lititz, and Hershey areas of southeastern Pennsylvania, you must book a guided tour at the Wolf Sanctuary. Public and private tours are available. Come in good walking shoes.

Guided Public Tours

The guided public tours offer a glimpse into a world that once existed in this region. You’ll learn about the history of the sanctuary, see some of the packs, hear their stories, and learn about wolf conservation and biology.

These tours are offered Tuesday and Thursday at 10:00 am year-round, Saturday and Sunday at 10:00 am May through September, and Saturday and Sunday at noon October through April. Children aged three and under and veterans are free. Ticket prices range from $13-15 for the 60-90 minute guided tour.

Private Tours

Private tours are $45 per person. They are similar to public tours, but they move slowly to visit each pack. Guests learn about wolf conservation, the wolves, and the mission at the Wolf Sanctuary, PA. This tour is for small groups and lasts about two hours.

The Full Moon Fundraiser

The Full Moon Fundraiser events are on the Saturday nearest the full moon each month. For example, in November, the event is on Saturday, November 5, and in December, the event is on Saturday, December 10. They do not permit children to the event. Guests must be at least 16 years old.

The arrival time is between 7:00 to 7:15 pm, and the event concludes at 10:00 pm. You can bring chairs, blankets, non-alcoholic refreshments, and snacks to enjoy the evening. You also want to get a flashlight since there will be little light, and you’ll be walking on uneven terrain. The $35 ticket includes a guided tour, a bonfire (weather permitting), and live entertainment.

Professional Photography Sessions

Many people want to come to the Wolf Sanctuary, PA, and take photos of these fantastic creatures. However, when you book a tour, cameras must have a lens of fewer than five inches, and you can’t bring selfie sticks or tripods.

For professional photographers, the refuge allows you to book sessions. You can spend additional time photographing the wolves using longer lenses and professional equipment. You still can’t take videos. Photography sessions cost $50 per photographer every half hour for up to two hours.

Wolf photographed in Wolf Sanctuary in PA

What Is the Adopt-a-Wolf Program?

If you want to help protect the species, you can participate in the Adopt-a-Wolf Program at the Wolf Sanctuary. Particularly popular at Christmas, this program helps provide the proper care these beloved creatures deserve.

If you’re interested, the deadline for Christmas adoptions is November 9, 2022. For $55, you can choose an individual wolf from a drop-down box and secure an adoption at the Wolf Sanctuary. You’ll receive adoption papers within four to six weeks.

Can I Volunteer at the Wolf Sanctuary?

Volunteers are highly crucial to the success of the Wolf Sanctuary. Because of the tour and event schedules, they need volunteers on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays, Sundays, and Full Moon weekends. Volunteers must be at least 18 years old and have visited the Wolf Sanctuary at least once. The application includes a profile, volunteer performance guidelines, and a volunteer waiver.

Traveler’s Tip: Talk a walk down memory lane and Step Back in Time at the Timeline Arcade in PA.

The Wolf Sanctuary in PA: Providing a Refuge for Gray Wolves for 40 Years

The Founder and Executive Director from 1980-1998 was William H. Darlington. The Darlington family has taken care to continue his legacy at the Wolf Sanctuary, PA. Since the pandemic, the refuge has lost enormous funding because of tour cancellations.

The staff hoped to build an on-site veterinary care facility but has postponed this investment. If you’d like to support the Wolf Sanctuary, your donations are fully tax-deductible as the organization is a 501c3 non-profit facility.

Whether you donate, adopt, or visit the refuge, you’re supporting the fantastic work of the staff and the incredible creatures they’ve protected for 40 years.

Will you visit Pennsylvania to see the 50 gray wolves and wolf dogs?

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