Re: Elk call
I have a different take. Last year I played with a cow for about 20 minutes during archery season. I could have reached out and touched her a couple of times. I still can't understand how she didn't wind me since she circled multiple times. Cows can definitely be called in during the right conditions.
Anyways, I like a combination of diaphragm and external calls. If you listen to a herd, they all make different sounds so I think its important to be proficient at different calls. In fact, one of my guides sat with me last weekend and listened to a herd on my ranch. We discussed all of the different sounds they made and the importance of being able to make those different sounds.
Make sure you are comfortable with a diaphragm because you may need to have the call in your mouth to stop the cow, and be able to immediately shoot. The external calls are more cumbersome and tend to get in the way when you need to take a shot.
Different calls work for different people. Buy a few and decide what you like the best. It also depends on the shape and depth of your palate, etc. Again, try a few and decide.