Colorado Elk Hunt Giveaway

Elk Hunting’s Most Common Pitfalls


The author poses with his giant Arizona bull.

The author poses with his giant Arizona bull.

In one of my recent Hunting Illustrated pieces I wrote about 10 things that we can do in the off season to become better elk hunters.  My hope is that we all used the off season to hone our skills to be better prepared for elk season since it is now upon us.

A couple of days ago (July 17th) a friend and I were enjoying glassing a small herd of elk from over 800 yards away when all at once they became alerted and spooked never to be seen again.  Initially I was confused as to why, but then I realized that we had not really paid attention to the wind since we were so far away from the elk and slightly above them.  While I was glad that it was July and not September, I was still disappointed that we had made this critical mistake of not heeding the wind!

With this recent blunder fresh on my mind, I have been pondering, what are some of the most common pitfalls in elk hunting and how we can avoid making them.  Here we go…

#1 World Record Freerange Red Stag

world-record-freerange-stagMy husband, Thad, and I had the opportunity to hunt New Zealand in April of this year. We have known Gus Bisset and his girlfriend, Carla Lucas, of New Zealand Trophy Hunting for many years and have looked forward to the opportunity to hunt with him on the south island under one condition: all free range animals, with red stag at the top of our list. Gus has been a fan of Barnes for many years which made it all the more exciting for us to hunt together. Carla runs the show in the office and is great about communicating needs, conditions, and instructions to clients. They make a great team.

John and Matt Mogle accompanied us to film the action for the Hunting Illustrated TV show and do some hunting as well. Johnny is also founder and president of Fierce Firearms. He outfitted us right with a pair of rifles to shoot our Barnes products. With over 15 years in the custom firearms industry, he brings his expertise and know-how to Fierce with the introduction of the new Fierce Fury rifle series. I carried a Fury XR in 270 WSM. The XR, built on the sturdy Remington 700 action, was topped with a Swarovski Z5 5-25×52. This rifle produces five-shot sub-MOA groups with 140 grain Barnes VOR-TX ammunition. Thad carried an Extreme Range model in 7mm Rem Mag with a carbon barrel that carried a Swarovski Z5 3.5-18×44. For the most part, Thad and I have not been impressed with carbon barrel accuracy, but Fierce has it figured out. This rifle puts five 145 grain LRX’s into three-quarters of an inch all day long.