Elena Gonick

Naturalist Guide

Elena has a lifelong passion for nature and wildlife. Her spare time is filled with hiking, backpacking, skiing, and wildlife watching. As a guide, she loves to share her knowledge of Yellowstone’s unique ecosystem and pass on her love of wilderness and conservation. She provides her guests with a fun day tailored to their interests as well as a new understanding of the the ecosystem.

Elena has been guiding since 2021.


  • B.S. Biology & Mathematics | Tufts University
  • Level I Wildlife Track & Sign | CyberTracker
  • Wilderness First Aid & CPR
  • PSIA Alpine Level I
  • Level I Avalanche Certification
  • ServSafe Food Handling Certification
More Adventures

Elena's Favorite Safari Tours



Elena grew up near the Olympic Peninsula where she spent many weekends exploring the woods and mountains of Washington State. She often visited her grandparents who lived just an hour outside of Yellowstone and began to develop a deep appreciation for the Northern Rockies. She studied at Tufts University where she earned a Bachelor’s degree in Biology and Mathematics. Elena conducted research on leaf cutter ants (atta cephalotes) in Costa Rica through a tropical ecology class. She co-authored a paper on leaf cutter ant behavior that was published in the scientific journal Insectes Sociaux.

After graduating in 2020, Elena moved to Bozeman, MT, where she got a job as a scientist through the National Ecological Observatory Network. She worked as a field technician studying small mammals and insects in Yellowstone National Park over summers and as a ski instructor at Big Sky in the wintertime. When Elena isn’t working you will find her in the backcountry skiing, rock climbing, and seeking out adventure. She believes the most meaningful experiences in life often come through exploring wild places.

Elena became a guide for Yellowstone Safari Company in 2023. She loves that she gets to combine her passion for education and meeting people with her knowledge of the science of Yellowstone. She can’t wait to share stories and experiences of the amazing plants, animals, and people of Yellowstone when she takes you on tour.

We had the most amazing day with our guide Elena showing us the best of Yellowstone. Elena was energetic and knowledgeable about all things Yellowstone. We cannot wait to come back and tour with the company again, five star experience!