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Decoy…
Elk
Contributors to this thread:
'Ike' (Phone) 09-Feb-22
Jaquomo 09-Feb-22
cnelk 09-Feb-22
'Ike' (Phone) 09-Feb-22
wyobullshooter 09-Feb-22
Jaquomo 09-Feb-22
orionsbrother 10-Feb-22
elkmtngear 10-Feb-22
Huntcell 10-Feb-22
Darrell 10-Feb-22
Grey Ghost 10-Feb-22
Darrell 10-Feb-22
'Ike' (Phone) 10-Feb-22
Yellowjacket 10-Feb-22
09-Feb-22
Which one, did it work, not work or was it a pain in the ass? :-)

From: Jaquomo
09-Feb-22
Elk mountain butt slip. Worked great hunting solo. Had bulls at literal point blank range. Montana butt. Worked sorta but better with one person flashing and moving it, off to the side of the shooter.

Tried the Stalker bow mount this year. Once I got used to it I could move on elk but never had one come to it. I wasn't around many elk this year. Almost all my spots I've learned in this unit were burned like the surface of the moon.

Mel Dutton folding decoy. Bulls didn't pay any attention to it when standing static. Elk like some movement in the decoy.

Heads Up. Have had bulls come to it when calling and moving it. I don't like the bow mount option, though. Threw my bow off balance.

Elk hat - have had great luck with it. Probably because I've used it more than any other and have learned some tricks.

Pretty much all of them are a little bit of a pain except the elk hat clipped on the side of my hunting pack. Otherwise you have to take off your pack (if solo) and get the decoy out, get organized, then figure a strategy that requires you to be seen but still be able to move if needed. Like below a ridge or something. But decoying can be a hoot, too, like any decoy hunting.

From: cnelk
09-Feb-22

cnelk's embedded Photo
cnelk's embedded Photo
Montana decoy. Looks realistic. PITA to set up/take down. Works sometimes. Doesn’t work other times.

Roll the dice

09-Feb-22
Lou, have you seen the Ultimate Predator ‘shoot thru’ yet…? I hear you on the Montana’s, one I’ve looked hard at before…

09-Feb-22
I tried the Montana cow elk decoy near my treestand one year. Had a cow come in and DID NOT like it! I figured maybe it was the eye contact that freaked her out so I tried the Butt decoy the following year. Same result. Needless to say, that was the last time I tried a decoy. lol! I think if you use one where the elk see it from a distance it may work. In heavy timber where they don’t see it until they’re close…not so much.

From: Jaquomo
09-Feb-22
Ike, yes, that's the "Stalker'. Have used it for elk and plains muleys. It's a good tool for the right setup. One thing that really makes those decoys pop is to add the plastic eyes they also sell. Totally changes the look of the deke, way more realistic.

Like most decoys, I have better luck showing and disappearing rather than just sitting behind it. With muleys, I've walked right up to a couple bucks tending does. Havent had that opportunity with elk.

10-Feb-22
I like the Montana elk butt. Caller sets it up. Shooter sets up 40-50 yards in front.

Solo, it can be tougher to juggle. Set it up and move forward. But in a fluid situation, you can end up having to loop back later to retrieve it because you’ve moved beyond.

I’ve had elk mill around the decoy without spooking several times.

But... I’m not Lou or Big Dan. Weigh my opinion accordingly.

From: elkmtngear
10-Feb-22
Secret to decoying elk, is to show "just enough" of the decoy, to convince a bull that you are the "real deal". A bit of motion sometimes helps.

I like the butt decoy, because when working a bull, because you can sell it as a bull raking a tree, while working behind it. Works great for a team setup, with the shooter off to one side, and out front. Solo is tougher, I've had some success planting the decoy, calling aggressively, and quickly moving forward at an angle. It's amazing what you can get away with, when a bull's focus is on that decoy.

From: Huntcell
10-Feb-22
Raise cow elk….. train as pack animal / decoy! Sell’em make enough money to go on a sheep hunt.

TBM you out there?

From: Darrell
10-Feb-22
Years ago, I cut a piece of burlap out in some semblance of a butt decoy and added some white paint in my incredibly limited artistic ability. It actually looked pretty good from 20 yards and out. The best part of it, was that I attached a loop of twine that made it super easy and fast to hang on my stabilizer. Can't say it ever resulted in a bull on the ground, but I had numerous run and gun situations where my confidence was higher as I envisioned a bull coming around the brush in front of me and the movement he sees of me drawing my bow is countered by seeing a moving butt.

It was also super easy to carry and it just rolled up and slid in my cargo pants pocket. Of course it was also super easy to leave hanging on a cedar limb in a deep canyon in NM in 2012 or so. I assume it's been mated several times by now and has been recycled on the forest floor by now. :)

Jaquomo, could you repost directions for making your elk hat. I bought one but it weighs a ton so I rarely take it with me. I think I need to make one between now and September.

From: Grey Ghost
10-Feb-22
I used the Montana RMEF cow decoy for the first time in 2020. I had spent the day bedded down with a herd of 40 elk all within about 150 yard radius of me in a sparse aspen grove. The bull I was after bedded out of range, so all I could do was wait them out. At around 4 PM the bull stood up and bugled, which seemed to cue his herd to get up and begin grazing their way to an open sage brush flat. The wind was good, so I began dogging the herd, while holding the decoy in front of me. When I got to the flat, the only cover I had was the decoy. The bull was bringing up the rear. As I closed the gap, occasionally a cow would lift her head and look at the decoy, then she would go back to feeding unalarmed. The bull was oblivious.

To my surprise, I was able to close the gap to around 70-80 yards without spooking the herd. As I was preparing to make my final move, an ATV came up the 2-track directly towards the herd and blew up my stalk.

I'm still not sure how I would have pulled off a shot, if I would have got into range, but the decoy certainly helped me get closer than I would have without it. Overall, I saw enough to convince me to include a decoy in my arsenal, but I'm not sold on the Montana decoy design. It's a bit of a PITA to use on a stalk, especially if there is wind, and it's next to impossible to get it to stand on its own I'll be exploring different options this season.

Matt

From: Darrell
10-Feb-22
With my Montana cow decoy, I ditched the legs many years ago. I've tied a piece of cord to the ear and another to the top of the butt. When I set up, I just string the two between to trees, bushes or whatever so I can be set up pretty quick. If its windy, I'll use some sticks rocks or something to weigh down the legs so they don't fly up at just the wrong time.

10-Feb-22
Thanks guys...

From: Yellowjacket
10-Feb-22
Friends and I have shot several elk using decoys. The last one I shot was using the Ultimate Predator mounted on my bow. Of all I've used I like it the best.

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