Sitka Gear
Shiras Cow vs Bull Elk
Contributors to this thread:
Oryx35 24-Jan-21
sticksender 24-Jan-21
Matt 24-Jan-21
llamapacker 24-Jan-21
paul@thefort 24-Jan-21
INDBowhunter2 24-Jan-21
Oryx35 24-Jan-21
From: Oryx35
I'm thinking about trying to draw a cow moose tag in Colorado this year. Obviously, it would be best to have friends along; however, there is a chance I could end up solo if I draw the tag. Having never stood over a moose, I'm curious how a Shiras cow compares with a bull elk.

I've killed a number of bull elk in New Mexico, and I'm confident I could get one out solo as long as I was smart about conditions (i.e. weather and terrain). From what I've read, a bull elk is ~700 lbs and a Shiras cow might be 500-1200 lbs. That is a huge range. Anyone with experience with both?

From: sticksender
A mature cow Shiras will be no more of a handful than a big bull elk. You might even luck out and kill one near a road. All three of my solo Shiras kills have luckily been within 1/4 mile of a road.

From: Matt
I only have a little experience with shiras moose (shot 2 bulls), but I would dismiss the 1,200# shiras cow. If I had to guess I would say the bulls I have killed which were mature were 900#.

From: llamapacker
A shiras cow is no larger than a mature bull elk. I have packed multiple Shiras, and two cow shiras, and found it to be little different than dealing with a bull elk.

If you can handle a mature elk, you will have no problem with a cow moose.


From: paul@thefort
how many non resident moose points do you have? It might be possible to draw a cow moose tag, ie, non resident, with fewer that 2-3pp. and then depending on which moose unit you apply for.

I shot an 11 yr old Shiras cow in Wyoming in 2009. I drug it the 1/4 mile to the truck in the snow but it was downhill. I didn’t know any better. Only experience I have but doesn’t seem like they are near as big as mature bull elk I’ve killed. I’ve never even thought about trying to drag a bull elk.

From: Oryx35
Excellent, that is exactly what I wanted to hear.

INDBowhunter2, I cannot imagine trying to drag a bull elk. Dragging a cow moose is pretty impressive.

Paul, I have 3 non-resident points. Based on the last few years, I should have decent odds of drawing. It all just depends on who decides to jump in this year.

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