Summit Treestands
Gut shot elk
Elk
Contributors to this thread:
city hunter 27-Feb-11
ElkNut1 27-Feb-11
wyobullshooter 27-Feb-11
Mossyhorn 27-Feb-11
WylieCoyote 27-Feb-11
WylieCoyote 27-Feb-11
Beendare 27-Feb-11
Bou'bound 27-Feb-11
LH 27-Feb-11
Big D 27-Feb-11
DonVathome 27-Feb-11
city hunter 27-Feb-11
joehunter8301 27-Feb-11
brunse 27-Feb-11
13year-old 27-Feb-11
LH 27-Feb-11
Ermine 27-Feb-11
city hunter 27-Feb-11
Jimbob 27-Feb-11
SBH 27-Feb-11
Jaquomo_feral 27-Feb-11
joehunter8301 28-Feb-11
OrElkaddict 28-Feb-11
smokinf15 28-Feb-11
WanaB 02-Nov-13
Nick Muche 02-Nov-13
Vids 02-Nov-13
TD 02-Nov-13
wyobullshooter 03-Nov-13
MC 04-Nov-13
Jaquomo_feral 04-Nov-13
Solo hunter 22-Sep-20
GF 22-Sep-20
Charlie Rehor 22-Sep-20
Ucsdryder 22-Sep-20
mrelite 22-Sep-20
Gileguy 22-Sep-20
LKH 22-Sep-20
Solo hunter 22-Sep-20
grizzly 23-Sep-20
deerslayer 23-Sep-20
DonVathome 25-Sep-20
deerslayer 25-Sep-20
DonVathome 26-Sep-20
Dale06 27-Sep-20
LC Archer 29-Sep-20
From: city hunter
27-Feb-11
Im sure a bowhunters worst nightmare. But what are elk prone to do, after being hit broadside in the guts, It dosent seem they are the type to run 150 yards and lay up, Also seems there stomach contents would leave little or no blood 2 trail ,,

I would think this would be a disaster , esp if bull wants to keep up with his herd ,, louis

From: ElkNut1
27-Feb-11

ElkNut1's Link
Herd bull or Satellite bull, both get sick from that shot & they can get sick very quick! It is not unusual for any bull or cow to bed up inside 250yds with that shot. Yes, I've seen them go further & head in the direction of water but if not pursued at all they will generally leave just enough tracking blood & stomach contents in the form of fluids or vegetation & want to lay down as they are getting sick feeling. (it can really stink) DO NOT PUSH OR TRACK this bull like a normal arrow hit animal. Wait 6-8 hrs before trying to track.

At times it can be tough with many elk in a group as his tracks can get trounced with all the other elk in this group, do your best to follow his sign extremely slow & carefully when the time is right!

If you bump a gut-shot bull pre-maturely he can leave little to no blood once he leaves that bed! So don't push to quick, do everything you can do to give him time to stiffen & expire.

Decisions have to made at times quickly as what to do if inclement weather is at hand or expected. More than once we had to get on bulls with less desirable shots because there was no way to wait as rains would wash away all sign. As I recall most all panned out well but a lot of miles had to be covered over-all. You have to be on your toes as you scan ahead with little noise & no talking as you may have to finish him off! Patience & persistence!!!

ElkNut1

27-Feb-11
Agree with Elknut.

A few years ago I had a bull take a step just as I released. We thought I still had a good shot, however, when I found my arrow I knew things were not good.

Like you say, other than a few drops of fairly clear body fluid that showed up on dry twigs, blood was non-existent. Due to nightfall closing in, we only gave him about 5 hrs and then went back and slowly started to head in the direction he had went. We had gone maybe 200-250 yds and my buddy caught some movement. It was my bull trying to stand up. Luckily, by this time he was so sick and stiff all he did was drop back down. At that point, we backed out and waited until morning.

Next morning we found him right where we left him. Other than a little meat that soured that had been against the ground, everything else was fine.

I was very lucky. As stated, if he had run off, the odds of finding him again would have been slim to none. If it ever happens again, I'll give him at least 8 hrs.

From: Mossyhorn
27-Feb-11
Most the time you won't have much to follow other than some gut juice. But some times you may be lucky to have knicked one of the arteries supplying the intestines.

If you hit an animal too far back just leave it alone. It will lay down as soon as it can and it typically won't get up. I'd give it 8 hours before recovery.

From: WylieCoyote
27-Feb-11
I was fortunate enough to draw a Tule Elk tag in 2009 and harvested a nice 6X6 with less than an ideal shot. I put a Thunderhead directly in the paunch and was able to observe it walk stiff legged about 100 yards and lay down. I prepared for a long day of waiting and settled in under a tree watching the big bull intermittently...expecting at least 6 hours of observation. In about 45 minutes, he rolled over dead!! I must have severed some sort of major artery as deer i have observed shot this way always lie down quickly and always expire many hours later. The above posts got it right, wait several hours and then cautiously track....you might get lucky as i did but you can't count on it....

Joe

From: WylieCoyote
27-Feb-11
I was fortunate enough to draw a Tule Elk tag in 2009 and harvested a nice 6X6 with less than an ideal shot. I put a Thunderhead directly in the paunch and was able to observe it walk stiff legged about 100 yards and lay down. I prepared for a long day of waiting and settled in under a tree watching the big bull intermittently...expecting at least 6 hours of observation. In about 45 minutes, he rolled over dead!! I must have severed some sort of major artery as deer i have observed shot this way always lie down quickly and always expire many hours later. The above posts got it right, wait several hours and then cautiously track....you might get lucky as i did but you can't count on it....

Joe

From: Beendare
27-Feb-11
I think every situation is different but there is one constant; if you bump a gut shot bull you will rarely find him

From: Bou'bound
27-Feb-11
I have found all gut shot animals seem to react the same,, they will go a bit and lay down,, if you are patient and smart you will collect them,, if you push things you will lose them,, is simple to say, but tough to do,, if you back out you'll pack out,, if you rush it you'll crush it,,

From: LH
27-Feb-11
I have recovered two solely gut shot adult elk. By solely, I mean no liver, artery or any quick death wound.

Both were still alive 16 hours later. One was immobile and we finished it off.

Second jumped from it's bed, went about 150 yards and died within a few minutes.

There was foamy liquid in the bed, but not a drop of blood. The wound was a perfect broadside hit right thru the middle of the gut area.

Both were within 300 yards of where wounded.

8 hours is far too soon to go after a gut shot elk. If you do, you better go 1 step, glass 2 minutes and repeat. If caught you might as well go back to camp and get a tracking dog.

From: Big D
27-Feb-11
I have witnessed two "only gut" rifle shot antelope. While we were judging up an antelope someone from another group took a shot. The buck ran 40 yards and humped up,.. We actually left for another vantage point,.. maybe ten minutes later the other group had walked in on the buck and finished it,.. the buck stayed in the humped position the whole time and hadn't moved The 2nd we were watching a herd, saw the shot,. the buck humped up and stood for 30 seconds until the follow up shot.

From: DonVathome
27-Feb-11
Whitetails, 95% go 150 yards max, many a lot less.

Elk I have seen 1, liver hit. I shot him in the evening and came back in the morning. He went about 450 yards laid down, moved 2 yards, laid down, went about 30 yards and laid down and died. I suspect he died shortly (1 hour or so) but went a good ways.

From: city hunter
27-Feb-11
wylie u lucky dog a tule tag congrats .

27-Feb-11
one yr while guiding i was part of 2 gut shot elk. 1 was archery and 1 was with a bow. the archery shot was a bad choice shot the bull quartering toward him very steep and put it right behind the shoulder angled and came out right in front of the ham....bull went 150 yards or so and bedded for 45 minutes. he got up and moved out of sight and darkness closed in. fortunately we were hunting a private ranch that was fenced and we were on the edge of the ranch. found the bull next morning 400 or so yards away dead near the fence. prob tried to jump it but couldnt get the energy to do it. lucky for the hunter.

next bull shot with a rifle quartering toward very hard. bullet went in right behind the shoulder angling for the back opposite ham. i wasnt sure of the shot so i tried to take up the trail right away to see if we had blood. i went about 40 yards around a corner and spotted the bull standing there with the infamous hunch in his back. he boogered off outta sight before we could pull of a second shot so i pulled us outta the area. it was 7 am. we came back at 1 because i was still unsure of where the bull was hit. long story short we found the bull another 50 yards into the woods from where we last saw him and he was bedded and prob not gettin up. head was swaying side to side. we finished him right there.

i would say with archery most bulls dont know they are hit and will get that sick feeling and try to lay up fairly fast. if left alone and not pushed i would bet most of the time you will find a bedded elk within a couple hundred yards. but conditions, predators and many other factors dictate what steps to take next. i suggest if possible wait at least 6 hours.

some good advice on here by the others

From: brunse
27-Feb-11
Any failed recoveries out there?

From: 13year-old
27-Feb-11
I'm new to elk hunting and to this day I have not shot an elk. But if you do happen to make a gut shot will it ruin/hurt any of the meat?

13year-old

From: LH
27-Feb-11
13, If you recover the elk before it has a chance to sour (what happens when you don't get the meat cooled off quick enough), you probably won't be able to tell it from one that dies quickly. Both the ones I posted about were fine.

From: Ermine
27-Feb-11
Any failed recoveries out there?

I shot a bull once. Watched my arrow sail thru the air and nick an unseen branch. Then watched the arrow deflect into the arrow back from where I was aiming. The bull hunched up and walked away slowly. I was in really thick dark timber. Waited a few hours (which had I known to wait longer 8 hours plus might have helped). Never found the arrow. Followed the bulls tracks for a bit but then it intermixed with other elk. Searched all day and could not find the bull or blood or anything. Went back a week later and looked for birds but found nothing. This was my first archery elk hunt, and knowing what I know now I would have waited a whole day and then went after him. I likely pushed him from his bed.

From: city hunter
27-Feb-11
ermine its hard without a blood trail , pure luck at times ,

From: Jimbob
27-Feb-11
My Dad shot a moose right through the guts, arrow only had stomach matter and slime on it. This happened at 7 am. My Dad wanted to search right away but I made him wait, We came back at 1:30 and found the moose stone dead 80 yds away, not a speck of blood anywhere. But when we opened it up to gut it a bucket of blood came flowing out. The arrow severed a major artery up high and the abdomen area filled with blood.

I suspect the moose was dead in minutes. We got lucky but I'm still glad we waited.

From: SBH
27-Feb-11
Brunse- here is a failed recovery for you.......It was the second year of bow hunting for my buddy and myself. Opening Day, right at daylight I spot a small bull and 4 cows working up a drainage just ahead of us. We slip up hill trying to get in front of them, up to a meadow where we think they are headed. When we get to the meadow there is a single bull already there...much bigger too. I drop back and my buddy slips in another 25-30 yards. I give a small bugle and he fires off right away, not happy to have some other bull in his area. I match his intensity and he turns my direction and starts coming in on a string...just like in the movies! He is tearing up the sage brush in front of him and bugling the whole 100yrds or so that he had to cover to get to where my buddy was. Watching this big bull head straight for him screaming all the way had my buddy pretty worked up. The reason I tell you all of this was that in our second year, with little experience under our belt we made some mistakes. #1- nerves got the best of my buddy and his shot hit high and back. #2- we only waited about an hour to an hour and a half. Again, we were so excited and amped up to see this bull on the ground that we talked ourselves into going after him too soon. We just did not know what we were doing and what that kind of a hit could mean. At this point we took up the blood trail. Good blood for about 100yrds and than absolutely nothing! We were sharing a camp with 3 other guys so we radioed them at 9 am to meet up with us and help us track and do a grid search. By the time they got up there about 2 more hours had passed. About 200 yrds above the last blood my buddy jumped the bull out of what would have been his death bed. At the bed we found the arrow and and a good pile of blood, but we never found another drop of blood from when he got up out of that bed. I think that once that bull figured out what happened he could have put 2-3 miles between us before he bed down and died. Knowing what I know now, we would have left the scene as soon as we knew the hit was not great. That bull would have died about 300 yrds from where he was shot and we would have walked up on him in early evening or the next morning. We spent the rest of the day (with 5 guys) and the next day in the rain doing grid searches trying to find that bull. It would have been the first elk kill amongst the group and we wanted that elk bad...but we never could find him. Hard way to learn that lesson. Hopefully hearing stories like this will help someone avoid the same mistakes we made.

27-Feb-11
In 37 years of hunting these things with numerous guys, and being in on over 100 elk bow kills, we've seen our share of gut shots.

Bottom line is that if you back out very quietly and wait at least 8 hours you'll find the elk bedded and sick or dead within 150-250 yards. Bear or wolf or other hunter intrusion can screw this up, but that's beyond your control.

One fairly consistent trait is that they'll almost always walk in a straight line in the direction you last saw them headed until they bed down in some thick stuff. Pass-throughs rarely leave any blood trail after the initial surge, because the holes plug quickly. A shaft sticking out will leave wipes on vegetation and sometimes drip a little blood.

If you don't slip out and stay out, and instead try a follow-up too soon, you'll rarely recover the elk. We have recovered some through sheer perseverance and no small amount of luck, but we learned our lessons early-on and now err on the side of caution.

13 year old, welcome to the elk hunting club! Some of the best elk meat I've ever eaten was from questionable shots I left overnight and recovered the next morning.

28-Feb-11
guess i should proof read my stuff more. sorry i meant 1 rifle 1 archery. im sure you noticed thats what i meant when you read on. sorry.

From: OrElkaddict
28-Feb-11
I guess I'm the only person on here that has gut shot an elk, watched them bed down and then crawled in for a finish up shot. I took more than 3 hours to sneak up the last 60 yards and put a finishing shot on him in his bed. If I had the luxury of waiting I would have but the daylight and weather weren't going to allow it. I'm sure there are plenty of horror stories out there from trying to press a second shot but sometimes you may not have a much of a choice. IMO

From: smokinf15
28-Feb-11
I agree with most everyone. I punched the shot last year and knew I made a gut shot. Picked up my arrow and totally backed out of the whole area and went straight back to my spike camp. Found my bull dead 150 yards from where I shot at first light the next morning. It was a long sleepless night but definitely the right decision. No spoiled meat either.

From: WanaB
02-Nov-13
Last year i shot a bull in the flank . It was the first time not making a perfect shot. The bull ran across the meadow about 100 yards and bedded down. Then got up and trotted into the trees out of sight. Not knowing what to do i Googled what to do and this thread came up on the search. I read it thoroughly while still sitting in the spot i shot him from. I backed out and gave the bull 8 hours. When i came back i went to the spot where he bedded down, looked up and there he was 30 yards away bedded, alive and looking at me. He was sick and did not get up. After a follow up shot he ran a short distance and died. It would have been a different scenario if it wasn't for this thread. I would like to thank everyone who contributed to it.

From: Nick Muche
02-Nov-13
Awesome!

From: Vids
02-Nov-13
Very cool story!

From: TD
02-Nov-13
That's as cool a story as I've read I think. Thanks much for bringing it up and posting it. Reading a thread dredeged up from 2011 I was wondering what this was about... never would have guessed.

Imagine,google up "gut shot elk"....minutes after a gut shot. Here i thought laser rangefinders were great technology....

See... you guys do some good after all.... now and then... =D

03-Nov-13
Great job keeping your cool during an extremely stressful situation!

Congrats on your bull!

From: MC
04-Nov-13
They bed up soon and stay put if not chased. Give them at least four hrs.

04-Nov-13
I Googled "gut shot" and all that came up was a bunch of selfies of fat guys showing their stomachs...

Seriously, WanaB, thanks for sharing. Good job with the recovery.

22-Sep-20

Solo hunter 's embedded Photo
Solo hunter 's embedded Photo
Here’s my story. Made a bad shot on a herd bull around 11 am. I knew instantly that I hit him in the guts. Checked my arrow after he ran off and confirmed what I saw. It was covered with partially digested food and a good amount of blood. Due to the amount of blood on my arrow I thought I hit a major artery or so I wanted to believe. I started looking for him after three hours confident that I hit arteries. The lack of a blood trail should have been my indicator to back out and give him more time. I started sweeping the hillside in the direction he went. He had bedded down in a dried up creek bed just under 300 yards mostly downhill from where I shot him. He seemed to struggle a little getting up and I never saw which direction he ran. Checked his bed and there was very little blood where he was laying along with some stomach juices. Gave him two more hours and started searching again. This time to find nothing. I did a very thorough search of the hillside downhill from where I jumped him. Ran out of daylight and started again the next morning. This time searching every drainage and wallow I could find. Pulled up my map and searched every thicket in the surrounding area. Day three I continued to search rechecking drainages and other areas I expected to find him. After throwing in the flag I gave it one more try on day four. Took my mutt with me to see if he could lead me to him. As I was walking my dog up a logging road I smelt death. I knew I was near him and ended up finding him dead in small thicket of trees and bushes. There was nothing special about where I found him. There was no water. It was not thickest part of the woods. He had ran about 500 yards from where I jumped him maintaining elevation along the hillside. I do believe he was heading for water and thick cover in a drainage 300 yards further in the direction he was running. He must have been too sick and couldn’t make it. I walked within 70 yards of him the second day. Unfortunately by the time I got to him the magpies and ravens have already devoured his hind quarter and the meat was far from salvageable. Moral of the story is practice often, take only confident shots and if your too shaky let off. If you do gut shot an animal give it time. I would more than likely have a freezer full of elk meat instead of a mount that will make my stomach curl every time I see it if I backed out and gave it more time. If you jump an animal prematurely don’t give up and be persistent. You owe it to that animal. I will forever have to live with this memory and it was a valuable lesson. I hope this helps someone either find an animal or think twice before they take a shot.

From: GF
22-Sep-20
That’d take some mighty big magpies to eat off a quarter....

22-Sep-20
RIP Cityhunter. We miss you

From: Ucsdryder
22-Sep-20
Keep an eye on the birds. A raven was circling downed elk this weekend within 1.5 hours of it dying. Magpies were sitting in the trees within a couple hours.

From: mrelite
22-Sep-20
I am glad you found him and kudos that you put the time in to find him.

From: Gileguy
22-Sep-20
My 1st elk hunt I leaned out around a tree and placed one right through the guts at only 25 yds. Was shocked but knew enough to clear out & wait for morning. Got to tent just before dark, skewered a bean can with a broadhead at the same distance. Didn't have a bubble on our sights back then and new to compounds, didn't realize what tipping your bow did to shot placement. Woke to 3" of snow, snuck into the area & found the elk still on its feet within 100 yds of where I shot it. Another broadhead through the lungs fixed things but I have never forgotten the miserable night I caused that elk.

From: LKH
22-Sep-20
Twice First was a cow that started to walk at the shot and arrow went through a small portion at the front of the hind leg and buried in the paunch without hitting the liver. No exit. Left 8 hours and then tried night trailing.

She started walking and then circled around in Oregon coastal regrowth about 15 feet high. Most of the time I crawled and twice came on my toilet paper markers in the dark. After 4 hours I was still within 200 yards of the shot site and quit until daylight.

Had lost an arrow and while I trailed the toilet paper to find it my 2 partners went to the last paper. While they were standing there they kept hearing a scraping sound and followed it to the cow which was moving her front leg. They finished her off.

It was about 17 hours after the shot.

Second Brother said he had missed a spike but couldn't find the arrow at a water hole. When we talked he described the site and I told him there was no way that arrow shouldn't have been stuck in the bank. Arranged to meet there at 9 the next morning and within a half hour I found a bit of blood on the suspect trail. i'd killed a cow there and had a good idea where the bull had likely gone so we could follow it but it had almost no blood. After about 150 yards it quit running and the blood disappeared.

We started working out possible trails when I jumped a spike out of it's bed. When I checked out the bed there was some phlegm on the ground but zero blood and I thought it must have been a different bull.

About that time my brother yelled and about 75 yards further he found the bull which had died. It was the bull I'd jumped. The bull traveled about 250 yards total and was still alive 16 hours after the shot.

If you make a shot that only involved the paunch you should wait a minimum of 12 hours and then hunt the trail since the elk likely will be alive. Maybe not so with a 2" rage but with my trad gear it's likely to be the case.

Both elk had very little blood and it was spots, seldom over a quarter inch.

Have had 2 others that the arrow went through the paunch and hit a little liver and then clipped one lung. One went 250 yards and I left it overnight.

The other was a big bull that bedded in the open after about 300 yards and then after laying there for about 2 hours got up and walked across the prairie in the dark. I followed by using my gold ring turned down to 10x. After about a mile it went over a hill and I couldn't see it against the dark trees in the ravine.

Came back the next morning and it was dead about 1/2 mile from where I'd last seen it.

Arrow entered just in front of the rear leg and the Zwickey was stuck against the bone in the opposite front leg.

Zero blood

22-Sep-20
Here’s my story. Made a bad shot on a herd bull around 11 am. I knew instantly that I hit him in the guts. Checked my arrow after he ran off and confirmed what I saw. It was covered with partially digested food and a good amount of blood. Due to the amount of blood on my arrow I thought I hit a major artery or so I wanted to believe. I started looking for him after three hours confident that I hit arteries. The lack of a blood trail should have been my indicator to back out and give him more time. I started sweeping the hillside in the direction he went. He had bedded down in a dried up creek bed just under 300 yards mostly downhill from where I shot him. He seemed to struggle a little getting up and I never saw which direction he ran. Checked his bed and there was very little blood where he was laying along with some stomach juices. Gave him two more hours and started searching again. This time to find nothing. I did a very thorough search of the hillside downhill from where I jumped him. Ran out of daylight and started again the next morning. This time searching every drainage and wallow I could find. Pulled up my map and searched every thicket in the surrounding area. Day three I continued to search rechecking drainages and other areas I expected to find him. After throwing in the flag I gave it one more try on day four. Took my mutt with me to see if he could lead me to him. As I was walking my dog up a logging road I smelt death. I knew I was near him and ended up finding him dead in small thicket of trees and bushes. There was nothing special about where I found him. There was no water. It was not thickest part of the woods. He had ran about 500 yards from where I jumped him maintaining elevation along the hillside. I do believe he was heading for water and thick cover in a drainage 300 yards further in the direction he was running. He must have been too sick and couldn’t make it. I walked within 70 yards of him the second day. Unfortunately by the time I got to him the magpies and ravens have already devoured his hind quarter and the meat was far from salvageable. Moral of the story is practice often, take only confident shots and if your too shaky let off. If you do gut shot an animal give it time. I would more than likely have a freezer full of elk meat instead of a mount that will make my stomach curl every time I see it if I backed out and gave it more time. If you jump an animal prematurely don’t give up and be persistent. You owe it to that animal. I will forever have to live with this memory and it was a valuable lesson. I hope this helps someone either find an animal or think twice before they take a shot.

From: grizzly
23-Sep-20
I believe I may have shared this before but it has relevance to this thread. First elk, tree stand over a waterhole. Herd came in and I shot the first big cow that came by. I had been counting how long it took for an animal to die after a good shot. 27 seconds was about usual for a whitetail. This cow had ran out to 40 yds and just stood there looking back where she had been shot at. When I had counted to three hundred I knew things were not right. There was one pine tree between her and me and I could not find the hole to put the arrow through. Every time I moved at all she seemed to get real nervous. I did the best I could to remain motionless while I watched her and hoped for the best. Eventually the herd had drank and splashed around enough that they left. She laid down a few minutes later. The sun was down and it was slowly getting darker. There was a full moon that arched across the night sky behind me low on the horizon. Plenty light enough to see her and her to see me if I got too stupid. Now, it wasnt cold when I shot her but as the night went on, I started freezing my butt off. I didnt dare try to open my pack and get a warmer jacket on. I did manage to very slowly get sat down. I watched for over three hours. Eventually the moon went behind the trees on the far ridge and the blackness began to settle in. Just when I thought I would not be able to see her anymore, she got up and slowly started walking away from me. I listened to her move off for direction. After not hearing her for more than twenty minutes, I slowly, quietly got out of the tree and on to the ground. Got a warmer coat on and walked the half mile to my tent. I was sure hoping to not scare her in the process. Too darned cold to get much sleep that night. Was back in the treestand before light to see what I might be able to see of her. A seven by seven came in and drank. I pulled back on him for practice. I did not have a bull tag and would not have shot another elk anyway. After the sun came up and I could not see her from the stand, I got down and went over to where she had laid. Not much sign there and just a few drops of blood in the direction she had gone. It did not take long and i realized the only way I was finding this elk was to start searching in the direction she had gone. I walked very slowly and stopped very often and let the binoculars do the looking . After 100 yds or so, I spotted fur. She was dead and had already cooled off quite a bit. There was only about eight inches between the entrance and exit hole in her paunch. There was no meat loss and i considered myself very lucky. When I went and removed the tree stand, I looked things over real good and realized I probably hadn't cleared a branch and it had altered the course of the arrow. Giving them adequate time is real important.

From: deerslayer
23-Sep-20
Charlie x2.....

Very sad to think Louis won’t be posting here any more......

From: DonVathome
25-Sep-20
Beendare: "I think every situation is different but there is one constant; if you bump a gut shot bull you will rarely find him"

I agree, and I will add in the same for whitetails too. Very very important to wait at least 6 hours, 8 is better - more best yet except meat spoilage becomes a great issue then pushing it. I had a friend catch a mature gut shot whitetail buck sneaking away a full 10 hours after a gut shot. He backed out and found it then next morning very close by but it was still moving 10 hours later! That is very rare.

From: deerslayer
25-Sep-20
Another thing to consider...... The meat spoilage starts when the animal dies, not the entire time you’ve backed out. In other words if the animal is alive for 12 hours, and you find it 16 hours later, the animal has only been dead for 4 hours, which is when the countdown would begin. Obviously with a gut shot you’re going to have some other meat issues to deal with, but the principal still holds true.

From: DonVathome
26-Sep-20
Definitely right deerslayer good point!

From: Dale06
27-Sep-20
Ten years ago, I gut shot a cow elk at sundown. Came back 12 hours later. Tracked her on a trail for 100 yards. Saw movement 10 yards off side of trail. She was unable to get up. Finished her with a chest shot. Glad I waited over night.

From: LC Archer
29-Sep-20
Miss you Louis!

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