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Elk Scouting During Season ?
I am planning on returning to hunt pronghorn in september and have question. I have been told that their is elk about a 2 hour drive from where I am hunting. Since I will be there I plan on going a few days and wandering around doing some scouting for the next fall. Just wondering would it be poor etiquette to do this as the season will be on ? I don't want to screw up someones hunt but would like to see if the area is worth returning to and this is the only time I would get to scout it .
Pretty easy to do without messing up someones hunt. No different than being another hunter in the area.
The best scouting is done while hunting anyway, so you'll get more of that in next year.
I wouldn't be too worried about messing someone up. You're just getting an idea this year anyway.
Depends on how you do it. Glassing from ridge tops is one thing, wondering through dark timber, checking out wallows, blowing your elk calls to see what answers, etc is another.
Thanks for the replies. I don't even have an elk call yet lol just want to take a look and see if their are elk and maybe check out a few spots on the ground on the qt instead of just on google earth. Not about to run through the woods yelling here elky here elky ! Just wondered as doing it with an elk tag in pocket is one thing but just to scout wasn't sure about the protocol. I am hoping to have a mule deer tag so that would change things a little bit but in case I don't get drawn again would still like to have a look around.
Grab yourself a small game license if you don't get the deer tag and then you're back to hunting.
I’d rather see someone who is scouting than actually hunting. You have every right to be in the hills any time of year. Scouting during season is certainly a legitimate reason to be where elk are. When I kill an elk I keep going out snooping around if I have time. Make the most of your trip. Good luck!
No issues with me. As mentioned above, be courteous if you come across a hunter. My favorite time to scout is between archery and muzzy seasons down here. Elk will scream till 9 or 10 am and I have the place to myself.
Thanks for the reply yooper89 I know in some areas just travelling through the bush looking for an animal is considered hunting in their definition so probably a good idea especially if scouting would draw attention to me by guys who don't like it !
It's public land, go have fun! The mountains are big, it's easy to not draw attention to yourself. Find yourself a nice glassing location, get there early, look and listen for bugles. Pay attention to where the other hunters aren't.
If you stay high to glass, don't "practice calling", and avoid hunters if you see them I don't see you doing a lot of harm.
About the only "etiquette" I can think of is, if you hear or see another hunter/hunters working a bull, back out. Beyond that, take advantage of the opportunity to get to know the area you intend to hunt. I do exactly as MP suggests. When I kill my elk before the season's over, once it's taken care of, I head back to the woods to continue to get my elk fix. September only comes around once a year and I want to enjoy every second !
There's absolutely no harm in throwing out a location bugle now and then. If you do locate a bull this way, since you're not trying to kill him, I'd recommend backing out before you get up-close-and-personal. You never know if that will be the bull you call in when you DO have a license in your pocket. You don't want to educate him for no reason.
As others have said, it's public land so go enjoy yourself! As long as you keep your distance from others that you know are hunting, you never know. You might just find yourself a honey hole!