Bow Hunt Elk

  • Practice all year long, not just before bow hunting season
  • In order to hunt elk you will need to be strong, fit and able to use equipment for big game. You should be able to pull at least 50 pounds.
  • Be in excellent physical condition. You can’t just go out in the wild and think that you can hike around with a heavy pack for miles if you’ve been sitting at a desk or in front of a computer for six months. You have probably been in the situation where you pack in 5 miles, shoot a bull, track the blood for a mile and then wonder how in the world you are going to pack that out? Sometimes it takes many trips to carry the meat out. You might be the one that needs to be carried out if you aren’t physically prepared. Stay in shape.
  • Be familiar with your hunting area before going into the field. Use your state hunting maps, Google earth, BLM maps, and download them onto your GPS.
  • Areas with lots of public access land or property open to hunting are the best. Bigger is better as usual.
  • Check out the road or trail access. Some roads are okay too many is bad.
  • Elk need food and water, go where they would tend to hang out, then check for wallows, old rubs, scats and other signs.
  • You’ve got to go the miles. Keep your binoculars on hand. Even if you see something miles away, go get it, slowly, quietly, with the wind in your face.
  • When you are in range, be┬áPatient, wait for it, only take the shot if it can be lethal. Your practice and preparation will pay off.
  • If it goes down but is still alive. Wait patiently. If it stays down wait and watch from afar. Wait thirty minutes. When you don’t see it breathing slowly close in. Keep checking for breathing. When your sure it is dead then approach. The last thing you want to do is have it jump up and bolt.
  • If it is shot and still standing, take another shot until it goes down or is out of range. Wait patiently. If you start to track it right away sheer adrenaline will keep it going for miles. Wait a couple of hours then start blood trailing. Watch for blood and footprints.
  • When you release that arrow you are responsible to do the due diligence in blood trailing no matter how hard or time consuming it becomes. Do not take the shot unless you are fully committed to do what ever it takes to find the animal.
  • If you can’t haul it out before dark. Hang it in a tree so bears, coyotes, mountain lions or whatever predators inhabit the area can’t reach it.
  • Pack it out and leave your camp the same or better than when you came.
  • Practice excellent safety