First Elk Hunt...Dissapointing

Discussion in 'Elk Hunting' started by ETX Loner, Oct 5, 2017.

  1. ETX Loner

    ETX Loner Member

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    Please help. Just got back from my first elk hunt. I was hoping for something challenging and adventurous and a chance to hike around and see the countryside, not to mention learn about elk hunting. What I got was basically a canned hunt and I'm not happy. It was a New Mexico private land owner tag. Scouting consisted of driving around with the guide looking for elk from the highway. There was no calling, no stalking, no hiking. I got a decent bull but was pressured to shoot much further out then I wanted because the guide didn't want to risk spooking them (we were in a planted alfalfa field only about 1/2 mi from the highway). I should have refused to shoot and walked away.

    I know elk hunting should be so much more than this and feel like I was a bit misled when I booked the hunt. I grew up backpacking the west and want that kind of experience. So for all you experienced elk hunters out there, how do I make that happen?
     
  2. Rick Richard

    Rick Richard Well-Known Member

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    Book a true wilderness hunt such as can be had in the Wyoming Thorofare region. It is the most remote place in the lower 48s.
     
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  3. flatwater bill

    flatwater bill Active Member

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    Welcome to the world of guided hunting...................FWB
     
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  4. ETX Loner

    ETX Loner Member

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    Funny you mention the Thorofare. The other group of hunters had previously hunted there on horseback but were aging and could not longer do it. Horseback sounds great but I was previously discouraged from doing that for my first hunt. I'm still young enough (42) and strong enough to pack into the backcountry and enjoy a physically demanding hunt. I live in East Texas and have hunted deer, pigs, birds but have no experience with elk so I would need a guide who is willing to work with me to explain the process and answer stupid questions.
     
  5. Bravo 4

    Bravo 4 Well-Known Member

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    Or you could go public land elk hunting in Colorado like me and hike/hunt all day, every day, for 9 days and risk not see anything. Careful whatcha ask for, ya just might get it.
    :D:D:D

    Just kidding of course, how about posting a picture and telling us about the shot/gear.
    Brighten this post up a bit, I leave in a week and a half.
     
  6. aspenbugle

    aspenbugle Well-Known Member

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    Most outfitters/guides in Colorado and elsewhere can accommodate what you want. You just need to Q&A with them some. You don't specially need a wilderness area. Easy to get "remote" and away from hunters and roads, at least in Colorado, in almost all units.
     
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  7. HARPERC

    HARPERC Well-Known Member

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    How are you fixed for preference points? Nothing against land owner tags, but generally if I use one it's because I can't draw a particular species, in the time frame I wish to go.

    Some good hunts in BC etc, elk hunts aren't just for the lower 48.

    Face to face with guides and outfitters, at some of the big shows would give you a chance to talk it out with multiple players.
     
  8. flatwater bill

    flatwater bill Active Member

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    ETX..........the logistics of elk hunting make it difficult to hunt back country without a guide.........certainly without horses to pack things out. If you have a similarly fit hunting partner you could buy over the counter tags in Idaho, and hunt without too much trouble. Two fit men can carry a lot of elk meat. Perhaps best fitting your needs is a drop camp.....if such still exists. An outfitter drops your camp and you in a reasonable area, and checks on you from time to time as pre arranged. No pressure to pull the trigger, and the satisfaction of doing most of it on your own. Guides tend to be result oriented, and the price is the same if you harvest on the first day or the fifth...so many of them put a lot of pressure on you to shoot, so they can go about their business........FWB
     
  9. ETX Loner

    ETX Loner Member

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    Yeah, that's kind of how I felt, like they wanted a kill as soon as possible. I should have brought a .223, maybe then he would have tried to get me closer :D
     
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  10. ShtrRdy

    ShtrRdy Well-Known Member

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    How long was your shot?
     
  11. ETX Loner

    ETX Loner Member

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    I certainly know how to pack in by myself. I have a lot of experience backpacking and am very comfortable navigating in the wilderness, but I don't have any experience in finding, stalking, calling or even field dressing an elk. That's why I was hoping to find a guide that I could learn from on the hunt.
     
  12. ETX Loner

    ETX Loner Member

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    460yds...way too long for me and I regret taking it. The rifle was up to it (300WM) but that's beyond my comfort zone. I even told the guide I wasn't comfortable but he insisted this might be our only chance. Like I said, I should have walked off.
     
  13. ETX Loner

    ETX Loner Member

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    Tango 66-min (2).jpg
    300WM a bit heavy but super accurate. If I was doing a true backpack hunt I would obviously bring something much lighter.
     
  14. Bravo 4

    Bravo 4 Well-Known Member

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    Nice setup!
    Some questions:
    Did you use that bipod?
    If so whatcha think about it?
    Is that the only beer sold in your state?
     
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