I saw this on the national news. What you don't completely see on the video is that the photographer continues to snap photos of the elk, as he can, throughout the sequence. I think the point he'd decided enough was enough was when the elk's antler caught on the man's shirt. My sticking point would have ended much earlier. I honestly don't understand why he ever let the elk get that close. It wasn't like he couldn't seek a safer spot.
Edited to say I do understand why he allowed the elk to get so close....back to my title.
Totally fascinating. Who took the video? Interesting that the elk paid no attention to whomever that was, nor to the cars. It looks as though the animal wanted to get a good look at the man, to make sense of him. I kept wondering why the guy wouldn't just take off his hat & leave it off. He was so compulsive about that, but then turned around & left what could have been a couple of thousand dollars worth of camera equipment close to those sharp hooves & that curious mouth.
I'm assuming it was someone in a car who took the video. I also assumed he photographer was trying to avoid eye contact, plus protect his head, and that's why he kept pulling the hat down. To make eye contact could be considered by the young elk as a challenge.
Here's an article from the Huffington Post that gives some more detail. I still don't understand why the people in the red car, or the person who filmed the encounter, didn't pull forward and allow the photographer to get in their car like the ranger in the white vehicle.
Yes, but he was a scaredy-elk. He was only testing the waters because the guy was shorter than he was. As soon as the man stood up that elk realised what he was dealing with and backed off. Those antlers would make me wary, though.