Thats hilarious. Several of them - I am an Idaho Redneck born and raised in Elk Country. I’ve killed them with everything from 25-06 to 300 Rum. I use bergers mostly, but the last couple years I have been using a 6.5 PRC and the 143gr eldx. I haven’t had a problem getting through shoulder bones. I shot one 3 years ago with a 270wsm using a 145gr eldx at 430 right through the shoulder - dumped him. I have never felt like elk are that hard to kill. My grandpa and uncles all used 243’s and 270’s to hunt them. I was the first one in the family to venture off into the world of 7mm RM, 300 Rum, 325wsm, 7mm wsm, 300 wby etc. i have killed them with a lot of different cartridges and different bullets. Now the only gun that leaves the safe is a 6.5 PRC - shrug.Not many 180's I'd trust to do that job. A couple years back a friend of mine hit a bull in the shoulder with a .338 230gr eldx. Impact velocity around 2600fps iirc. Bullet did not make it through the rib cage.
Is a 338wm too small for elk too? What exactly is your definition of a 'good' bullet?
Have you ever quartered a mature bull?
Every year elk get tougher and tougher apparently...darn near bullet proof to most people.