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  1. #11
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    These posts make me want to open up my camp. Bowhunting elk in the rut is why God made September IMO. I can't do it this year, but maybe I can take one of you hunting with me down the road.

  2. #12
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    Greenbay---DryFlyGuy really hit the nail on the head with his comment about hunting bulls with archery tackle in September when they're making noise! There is nothing like it and you know where the bulls are working, rather than playing somewhat of a guessing game after the rut. I don't feel like a 280"-300" bull is asking too much if you're in an area with a decent elk population. We see bulls like that all the time in the Wyoming unit we hunt every year, but unfortunately it is now taking close to max preference points for a nonresident to draw a bull tag while it's about a 75% chance or better for a resident to draw it. We kill a good bull every time someone gets a tag and we'd be 10 for 10 over the last 10 years or so since I started keeping track if one guy hadn't passed on a bunch of bulls under 320" looking for a big one back in about 2005 or 2006. The reason we have that great success is because we've hunted that BLM area for 20 years or more, so definitely believe the guys when they tell you knowing the country is the biggest part of killing elk on a consistent basis!
    Last edited by Topgun 30-06; 07-21-2013 at 09:47 AM.

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  4. #13
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    I agree on Colorado being a good place to start out with elk hunting. It is really nice to go back year after year and know the country where you are hunting. It does still remind me of whitetail hunting, in that if you go where other people aren't as willing to go, you will find bigger animals.

  5. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by mnhunter View Post
    I think the key is that you go into your first elk hunt with the right mindset, so you aren't disappointed when you come back with nothing but blisters
    that's some really good advice mnhunter, I have heard it said many times " Every year there are hunters who leave the mountains with the trophy of a life time and every year there are hunters who leave the mountains with nothing but the memories of a lifetime" I just make sure that I fall into one of these, instead of the I didn't kill crap my hunt sucked I wanna complain about everything group ..

  6. #15
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    OTC Colorado is the best bet. You can hunt the same area every year and that really pays off in learning where the elk are and what they are doing and what they are going to do when pressured. Learning feeding, bedding and watering areas are imperative to finding elk. Lots of important info in Eastmans Bowhunting Magazine. Best money an elk hunter will ever spend.

  7. #16
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    My first elk was a cow I got with a bow back in 05 and I was happy with that

  8. #17
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    As you research think of predators. I hunted a unit in Idaho for several years just to find the hunting harder and harder every year. Even as I was getting to know the area better and nailing down the Elk behavior I could not keep ahead of the wolf population. Each season brought less encounters with the Elk. those encounters should have increased as our skills improved and knowledge of the area increased. We bailed on the unit this year and are starting fresh. Kind of a bummer because we really had the area down. I suggest a person start out in a unit that does not have wolves because I believe its gonna get worse and DFG won't be able to get a handle on them for a long time. Just one man's opinion.

  9. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Manualman View Post
    My first elk was a cow I got with a bow back in 05 and I was happy with that
    Right you are, any elk with a bow is a trophy. There isn't a "Big Six" point bull for everyone who wants one. Learning an area well, bedding areas and escape routes takes time and money. Took me better than 10 years to get everything sorted out. It was time well spent, now I usually fill 2 tags a year. It sure was fun though, even on years when I didn't connect. Good luck to you!

  10. #19
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    I have a little different take on OTC tags. All of my better bulls have come out of General tag areas. I have hunted a few LD areas but I am always drawn back to the unlimited areas. I have always felt that the areas I know the best I will do better in. I agree there are a lot of factors but even with those factors included in the mix every year for the past twenty I have been offered multiple opportunities to take a elk. Now if you ask have I always taken the shot to fill a tag the answer would be no but I could have. I personally like the unlimited areas. I have found that in most of these areas hunters try to hunt close to where they can drive. Myself I have always packed it in between 3-7 miles depending on where my scouting takes me. I don't think you are taking a chance by hunting a unlimited area if you do your home work and put the time in. I have never hunted elk with a rifle and have always hunted archery season. I just feel this can be the time of year that would be the most productive for the way I hunt and the time of year I can take a few weeks to take care of business. There are way to many resources out there these days for one to be successful. Twenty years ago this wasn't so. Like this site lots of good info that twenty years ago one wouldn't have dreamed of.

  11. #20
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    I agree with 25contender, the unlimited areas are great during archery season. As long as there is a way to get away from motorized vehicles, there will be some bulls that most of us would want to kill. If the terrain is rough enough, you don't even have to hike in as far. I am by no means an expert, but in the archery season I have found that if you hunt hard enough in good areas, you will get an opportunity. Not to mention it is just fun to be out there at that time of year and in such beautiful country.

 

 

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