There are some very costly mistakes that hunters will make each season while Elk Hunting in Colorado. They can be easily avoided – if you know what to look for. Sometimes the problem is from conflicting information that a Hunter has heard, but more often they are simply things that a Hunter did not realize was important or did not give enough thought to.
You Need To Be In Condition – You will be hunting in the Rocky Mountains – that is very rugged terrain. Elk Hunting in Colorado requires you to be in good physical shape. The 4 remaining Elk breeds in North America have survived so long because of their ability to move through the mountains will skill. You will have to actively track them through the mountains at high altitudes before you will be able to take a shot. It is not uncommon for an out of shape hunter to have to cut their hunt short due to lack of strength.
Elk Bugling – It takes practice and persistence to become a good bugler. Do not think you are going to go Elk Hunting in Colorado and practice your calls for the first time at your camp? You will probably scare every Elk off for 100 miles. You practice before your hunt – and a lot. Then you will bugle often when you are hunting – Elk do. The other mistake I see, is that hunters will bugle softer the closer they get to a bull (they think the will scare it off). The fact is – Bulls bugle louder when they get closer to each other. Its a competition – don’t let off.
Get a Quality Pair of Binoculars – Elk Hunting in Colorado or Elk Hunting in general is an expensive hobby. Most of us hunt with a budget in mind. I understand that and costs need to be managed. Buying cheap binoculars is a bad investment. As much as everything else cost, do not sell yourself short by not being able to spot the Elk you want to track. Elk are stealth and crafty – they can blend in behind a twig. Your goal is to find them and track them from the start. Your scope will not suffice – get really good binoculars.
Do Not Set Up Too Tight – My Mantra, Don’t take a shot unless you are 100% sure. You cannot take it if you have squeezed yourself into a spot that has no room to move. It might be a great to watch from – but do you have the freedom in your arms and legs to really set the shot up? Check for your available movement before you decide on a spot to take a shot from.
Elk Are Smart – Ive said before they may be big – but they are smart. I think there is a quote “Never Underestimate Your Competition” – that is a quote Elk Hunters should embrace. Yes, Elk know a lousy elk bugle, or the smell of you Axe body wash, or the sound of a truck door slamming – they have survived by being smart. Don’t underestimate their intelligence while Elk Hunting in Colorado.
Colorado Weather – You have to totally respect the weather while Elk Hunting in Colorado. It can be a perfect fall day in the afternoon and become freezing after the sun goes down. The snow in Colorado or the Rockies in general can change fast – especially in the highest altitudes. Prepare yourself – make sure you have supplies so you can start a fire and have thermal wraps. This can totally ruin a perfect Elk Hunt.
Just Stay Home – You will never bag a bull sitting in your living room – I don’t think they can ring the doorbell. I cannot promise you that you will get the big bull if you go elk hunting in Colorado – but I can promise you that you will not bag an Elk if you stay home – Go Elk Hunting!