Officials characterize 2012 as a year of never-before-seen success for elk hunters in the state of Wyoming.

Wyoming Game and Fish officials say the 2012 elk harvest was the largest and most successful in Wyoming history. 26,385 elk were harvested in 2012, besting the previous record of 25,692 set in 2010.

Robin Kepple, an information officer with Wyoming Game and Fish in Casper, says it was a banner year for the state's 57,000 elk hunters.

"That's a 46-percent success rate," Kepple said. "Elk numbers are doing really well here in Wyoming, and elk hunters are benefiting from that."

Kepple says Wyoming Game and Fish is doing several things to attempt to manage the state’s booming elk population.

"We're maintaining higher cow-calf harvests, and, wherever we can, we're adding extra bull hunting periods, and we're also having longer seasons," Kepple said.

Kepple says the elk population in the Rocky Mountain region is growing in part due to favorable climatic conditions.