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Booking an Elk hunt for the first time
My son and I are getting into bow hunting and want to Elk hunt in 2018. Can anyone give a first timer some advice?
Give Dan a call at Rocking R.
With an outfitter or on your own?
I can tell u who not to call in NM :)
I would suggest researching a DIY hunt if it's possible. It will save you money, and there are plenty of elk on public in NM. I was considering a guide for Idaho, and I will never quit beating myself up for asking such a dumb question. I am now planning a DIY and am loving it. It has saved me more than I care to share, and it will be so much more rewarding in the end! I'd give it a shot!
If you are deciding on an outfitted hunt, make sure and do you research and due diligence in asking questions of the outfitter and calling plenty of references, both successful and non-successful. Outfitter should be willing to offer you a list of both. Do a search for the best outfitter questions to ask as there have been several threads on such. Hope that helps a little bit.
Use the "OUTFITTER REPORTS" here on B.S. as a reference as to which ones are good and which ones NOT to use.
Choose a state that offers OTC permits first to help narrow it down. Avoid draw only states as that is not a guarantee you will go.
You mention you are getting into bow hunting. If you haven't done much bow hunting I would suggest you get some experience on other big game animals with a bow before you spend the time and money elk hunting.
Learning to bowhunt and learning to elk hunt at the same time would be a monumental task.
Squid is on the money. Elk varies from most whitetail hunting in that you will be on the ground. Learning when and if you can draw, how the wind works in mountains, and many other things will make elk hunting easier. But you can learn that on elk too if that's your choice.
Luck is a huge part and you might kill an elk the first day or not for 3-4 years.
You think learning to bowhunt on mule deer is easier than elk?
If I were you book with an outfitter and absorb as much as you can, ask questions and learn. I've done a couple outfitted elk hunts and learned a ton. Now I'm heading out to DIY from here forward. Have fun and get ready to be addicted.
I would only book with a bowsite sponsor and one that has multiple reviews. You can always get a lemon but at least you will have filtered through a lot of them by going this route. Good luck. Have fun.
HDE, there is a lot of truth in your response. Both are tough. What is different is that you will probably get many more "learning" experiences on a mule deer hunt. With elk, there is a good chance you may only get one or two on a first elk hunt.
Do a DIY hunt. You can hunt more than 5 or 7 days. You can do your scouting and research of areas during the winter and spring even if you have to use Google Map. You can put in for draw units this year and start building points for future hunts. Every year you will get more efficient with your bow.
Well, I'd disagree with a lot of the advice on this thread. You say you're booking, so it seems you've decided to book a guided hunt. If that's what you want to do, then do it. Post how much you're willing to spend and you'll get a lot of great advice on Bowsite as to where to go. I hope you and your son have a great hunt.
But LKH, you don't hunt deer and elk the same. If you chased elk the same way, then yes, you may only get one or two experiences and vice versa for mulies.
As far as hiring an outfitter, yes. That would be the quickest way to achieve success early on.
If you are not familiar with Western hunting I would NOT do a DIY. The West outdoors in not like the outdoors in your hometown. The "outdoors" out west can kill you if you are ill prepared. A semi inexpensive guided Elk hunt to give you a good idea of equipment needed....logistics and also teach you how to go about hunting them.
Then you can make a move to a DIY if you want....I`ve known people that went into the mountains cold bang and never came back.