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Scouting the Long-odds Tag

In The Hunt by Mark KayserLeave a Comment

Why should you research your dream unit annually? It’s worth doing legwork for the day you actually draw.  Play the point gameThe vast majority of elk hunting states give you opportunities to increase your chances at drawing an elk permit annually through the accumulation of bonus or preference points. Systems vary, but in general, for every year you apply and don’t draw, your chance of drawing a permit increases if you pay a few extra …

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Bone Out A Hindquarter

In Bugle, The Hunt by RMEF6 Comments

Those massive hindquarters look more daunting than they are, but you need a good starting point. There is more than one way to cut up a hind-quarter, but I like to start by finding the ball joint on the inside of the leg. Use your knife like a sewing machine and trace the femur from the ball down to the knee. With the initial incision, work your knife around the femur, cutting as close to …

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Elk Strategy: Don’t Think Too Much

In The Hunt by Wayne van ZwollLeave a Comment

Why do inexperienced hunters sometimes enjoy maddening success? Maybe it’s because they haven’t begun to out-think themselves.  To paraphrase an insightful saw: “Whether you think you’ll hit or not, you’re probably right.” Any hunter can beat himself with too much thinking. The more elaborate the tactic, the more likely it is to fail. One reason inexperienced hunters enjoy maddening success is that they haven’t yet begun to out-think themselves. They follow simple strategies, some of …

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Glassing for Game

In The Hunt by RMEFLeave a Comment

If you’re the average elk hunter, you don’t have enough coin to buy the best of everything. Doing so would likely mean a second mortgage. But if you’re going to buy one thing that will truly make your elk hunting more productive and enjoyable, it’s high-quality binoculars. Good (typically expensive) glass gathers more light at dawn and dusk than a less expensive pair. Images are crisp and clean. It only takes one hunt using your …

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Tips on Selecting an Outfitter

In The Hunt by Jim Zumbo8 Comments

Ask for references and call them. Then, ask for names and contact info of other hunters who were in camp and call them too. The outfitter will likely supply you only with happy hunters who might be the exceptions. Be sure you and the outfitter are on the same page regarding availability of animals, as well as the chances of seeing a trophy – if that’s what you’re after. Be sure he understands what you’re …

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Off-season? What off-season?

In Bugle, The Hunt by Chuck Adams1 Comment

Reddish brown hair flickered between two trees, and I slowly drew my arrow. A split-instant later, the critter stepped into view 25 yards away. I aimed, dumped the bowstring and heard the broadhead strike like a fist against a melon—a perfect, quick-killing hit! Similar scenarios occur hundreds of times each fall as bowhunters across the country call in elk. But the month of the hunt just described was February, and the animal was a big, …

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Field Judging Elk

In The Hunt by PJ DelHomme1 Comment

For me, a 6×6 is a good bull, and it’s going in the freezer. I have nothing against raghorns or cows filling the freezer either. But what happens when you draw the trophy unit you’ve waited 20 years to hunt? Chances are you’re going to see more bulls than you’ve ever seen on a hunt, and you can be picky. You might even want a typical bull to score the minimum 375 inches to get …

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Find the Biggest Bulls in Your Area

In The Hunt by Chuck AdamsLeave a Comment

In 2003, I had the good fortune to kill a Montana bull with a net score of nearly 400. A cow elk had leaped up in front of me and right behind her was a monster bull with the biggest back forks I had ever seen. As he jumped a log and ducked around a tree, I could see six long points on each side, main beams that stretched to his rump, and an impossibly …

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Should I Fly or Drive To My Next Hunt?

In The Hunt by RMEF42 Comments

Last bow season, I found myself on an airplane next to a hunter from Florida who was heading to Colorado to chase elk. He asked me point blank, “If I shoot a monster bull, how can I get the antlers home?” I didn’t know, but I told him we’d figure it out.  First off, does it make sense to take to the skies for your next elk hunt? Not really, says veteran elk hunter Wayne …