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Crept up on a huge bull elk today....

Discussion in 'Shooting Related Threads' started by Brian in Oregon, Oct 3, 2009.

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  1. Brian in Oregon

    Brian in Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Opening day of deer season. My son Sean and I went out 0-dark-30 on my mother-in-law's ranch. We split up and each covered a well used deer trail at opposite ends of the ranch. Saw lots of deer sign, but nothing moving by mid-morning, other than rabbits, squirrels, camp rats (chipmunks) and birds.<br>
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    So I walked an old logging road to see if I could push a buck out towards him. No dice this time, though it's worked well in the past. But what I did manage to do was creep up on a bull elk. A huge-by-large bull elk. Got within 50 feet of him before he got nervous and took off through the dense woods. One of the largest elk I've ever seen, though he didn't quite make the Boone & Crockett class. Still, he was larger than most horses and his racks were about as long as my shotgun. (Yes, shotgun. Because I was pushing though dense woods, a long shot is about 100 feet, not 100 yards, so slug guns work best, with the first shell buckshot in case I jumped a coyote.)<br>
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    Anyway, I felt pretty good about my woods stealth, because it was obvious this bull has been around a long time, and you don't get that way from making mistakes. He might have been confused because I was wearing full camo, head to toe, including a face mask, and wondered why a bush was moving towards him. (This has worked real well with younger bucks, and last year I had a spike walk right up to me trying to figure out what I was. But spikes can't be hunted.) Unfortunately, elk season here doesn't start until November, so this big bull was out of season. But what a magnificent animal. Really made my day.
     
  2. Brian in Oregon

    Brian in Oregon Well-Known Member

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    I've found that if there are elk in any numbers they tend to run the deer off. Individually that doesn't seem to be a problem. I don't know if the elk actively run the deer off or if the deer simply feel intimidated or what, but I've seen this too often to be a coincidence.
     
  3. g7777777

    g7777777 TS Supporters TS Supporters

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  4. Carol Lister

    Carol Lister TS Member

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    When I was a girl, my father and I were hunting near Fairbanks. On a scouting foray we crawled rather close to a pair of caribou that were grazing on the back side of a low rise. Excited by our success and engrossed in watching the caribou we failed to notice the big male that had crept up behind us and snorted loudly almost into our ears when he got to within about 10 feet of us. We rolled over and sat up with eyes like saucers; he just rolled his antlers, turned and trotted back down the slope/

    Carol Lister
     
  5. Bruce Specht

    Bruce Specht Well-Known Member

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    Interesting that the opportunities described in these post seem only to happen when it isn't season. As for walking up on an animal in the wild, my wife and i were hiking in the valley of the giants. AS we passes through a downed redwood my wife stood face to face with a bull elk. Don't know who was more shocked my wife or the elk
     
  6. Brian in Oregon

    Brian in Oregon Well-Known Member

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    It makes sense it happens more often when it isn't in season, at least for those who are in the outdoors a lot. Hunting season is but a fraction of the entire year, so the odds are you will see a particular animal when it is off season. In my case, I coyote hunt year 'round, so I'm constantly in the woods, plains or desert, and see lots of wildlife, most of which are out of season.
     
  7. WWB

    WWB Member

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    Sitting in Estes Park last Wed in an outdoor park with the wife eating a sub sandwich and drinking root beer when a cow Elk so old she was almost black came up and ate a piece of lettuce from the guys sandwich across the table from me....
    Have to prod them off the golf course with a putter so you have a clear shot.
    Bill
     
  8. Brian in Oregon

    Brian in Oregon Well-Known Member

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    [​IMG]<br>
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    Literalist, the shotgun is a Remington 1187 3" fully camo'd turkey gun with rifle sights and a 21" barrel. I replaced the Tru-Glo sights with Trijicon tritium night sights for hunting coyotes at night (which we can do on private property). This gun is my workhorse. Also have a 21" and 28" camo'd vent rib barrel for it. For slugs, I use a mod choke. This gives me the best groups with Remington 2-3/4" Sluggers, which is 3" at 100 yards. For varminting, like gray diggers, I use a full choke. For coyotes, I use a super full turkey choke with #4 buckshot. LOP is about 14", and I installed a Remington R3 recoil pad, which is made by Limbsaver.<br>
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    Here's another photo taken last year with my son Sean. We're in a corner of a field in this photo. Behind me is an old logging road. I was wlaking it to try to kick a buck out to him, which I did, with this result. The coyote must have been tailing the buck, and he came running towards me, then upon seeing me turned 90 degrees. I gunned him with the 1187, putting two slugs in his chest. You can see that the woods here is quite dense. The 1187 I'm using is almost ideal for this kind of hunting. A long shot in these woods is about 100 feet at best. I also have 45-70 lever actions, and they take a close second. One plus of the shotgun is that there are rabbits here, and I can slip a game load in for them.<br>
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    [​IMG]<br>
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    Jim, I had a cell phone camera with me, but had no chance to use it. My other cameras are too large to take hunting.
     
  9. wolfram

    wolfram Well-Known Member

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    Getting close to those big bulls really gets the blood pumping doesn't it? If your really lucky and come up on them from downwind and can usually smell the old bulls before you see them. Dang I wish I could draw an elk tag .....
     
  10. Brian in Oregon

    Brian in Oregon Well-Known Member

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    I've never been elk hunting before. usually tied up with work projects during elk season. Maybe I ought to take a week off and do nothing but elk hunt. I discovered where they hole up in the woods before crossing the open fields just after sunset. They've got a large trampled area and it's full of fresh elk droppings.
     
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