Elk Foundation to Fund Arizona Conservation Projects

MISSOULA, Mont.—Wildlife conservation and public education projects in five Arizona counties have been selected to receive grants from the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation in 2010.

The new RMEF funding, totaling $75,600, will directly affect Apache, Coconino, Navajo, Yavapai and Yuma counties.

Two additional projects have statewide interest.

“Thanks to our volunteers in Arizona, and their dedicated work in staging successful banquets and fundraisers over the past year, we are continuing our long tradition of funding worthy conservation and education projects across the state,” said David Allen, RMEF president and CEO. “Since 1984, our annual grants have helped complete 380 different projects in Arizona with a combined value of more than $29.3 million.” [Read more…]

Much Anticipated Companion to Elknut’s Playbook

ElkNut Scouting Elk CountryThis audio CD features 26 different elk sounds being made by actual elk themselves! You can now learn to put these sounds with the names ElkNut describes in his Playbook and DVDs and take the knowledge right into the woods.

Special Rules for Late Elk Season in GMU 54

GUNNISON, Colo. — The Colorado Division of Wildlife is reminding late season hunters in Game Management Unit 54 northwest of Gunnison to be aware of special regulations that apply to this hunt.

The late elk season for this unit runs from Dec. 1 to Dec. 31. The hunting area, however, is split into two sections, one east of West Antelope Creek, and the other west of West Antelope Creek.

Licenses designated L1 are valid in an area east of Antelope Creek and West Antelope Creek, east of the boundary of the West Elk Wilderness, south of the Kebler Pass Road (CR 12) and west of Colorado Highway 135.

The L2 licenses are valid for the area west of West Antelope Creek. [Read more…]

Idaho Elk Trip 2010: Last Day

Greg at Almond's Spill

We woke up early, packed camp on our backs and headed west to hunt our way back from whence we came. We ran into the Forestry Contractor again and talked with their team leader Andrew for a bit. We talked about conservation, hiking, hunting and the like. I found it interesting that nobody in the group hunted. But, yet we were all on the same page in the goal of keeping wild areas wild! Andrew informed me that they would not be back in this area for at least another 3 years. My mind was already starting to work on the next trip out here. [Read more…]

Guide to Going Gutless

MISSOULA, Mont.–Eviscerating an elk can be an unpleasant part of a hunt; the prelude to hard, heavy work packing out quarters. But the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation is offering insights to a lesser-known, long-proven alternative. Gutless field dressing can save you time, weight and handling of entrails with no significant loss of meat.

This method also allows hunters to skip the traditional step of splitting and handling the spine, which can contain fluids associated with chronic wasting disease. [Read more…]

Idaho Elk Trip 2010: Day 7

 

Elk rub alarm clock

We were awakened this morning around 2am by a bull raking a tree 15 yards from my tent. This was a unique and exciting way to be woken up. Between the raking noise and the ground moving was enough to get the heart racing. This bull raked on his tree for at 15+ minutes, and all I could think of was if he is above me, don’t lose your balance! Then, all of sudden the raking stopped, all I could hear were hooves beating the ground and moving away. I thought maybe he winded us as he was so close to our camp. But, then he then gave a nervous grunt, elk generally won’t do this if they wind humans as they just flee the area.  He didn’t just give us one nervous grunt, he have us 16 nervous grunts over the period of 7 minutes as he walked in semi-circle around us and went to raking on a smaller tree 18 yard from the tent. [Read more…]

Idaho Elk Trip 2010: Day 6

We woke up very early pack up camp and hunt while hiking back to the area that I wanted to hunt. What was nice was we found a trail that would take us near the area I wanted to hunt, so it was a little less like the NFL Combine Obstacle Course! [Read more…]

Idaho Elk Trip 2010: Day 5

Today is the day we hike out to the truck to replenish our food supplies and replace any unwarranted equipment or clothing. On the hike out, Greg mentioned that he needed to call his loved ones. This meant that we would have to drive to town to get a signal and they were receiving the SPOT messages as well. This should have taken 6-7 hours to hike out and back in, too a bit longer. This turned out to be much longer, as I treated Greg to a trip to the local campground so we could get showers. This was also leverage to hike back in further to the mountain where I wanted to start hunting on the first day. Now it was time to hit it hard as we only had 2 ½ days of hunting left. By the time we got to where we had stashed our gear it was almost dark, so we decided to setup camp there.

Greg use the Mystery Ranch Day Lid to carry his gear to swap out

Idaho Elk Trip 2010: Day 4

Idaho Elk Trip 2010: Day 4

We setup on another small lake for this morning’s hunt, as it looked very elky as they had water, dark timber cover on 2 sides, meadow and a north facing slope. We received a little response but the bull went quiet before Greg could get to him.

We went back to this little oasis to hunt for the evening. We did get the bull to respond to us but only twice as he was further up on the mountain and Greg couldn’t get in on him. On the way back to camp that evening, Greg noticed a light at the far end of the lake. I could clearly tell that he was not comfortable with this as he thought the light was moving our way, which it was not. The light never moved in any direction, it just would go dim and then brightens back up again. I told him that it was probably hikers camping out, as no hunters would be that nuts to hunt back her To cover his concern, he said that, Maybe Amy sent rescuers out for me, because she didn’t receive the SPOT messages. I told him she wouldn’t do that at the beginning of a trip and she was content with my woodsman skills. So, we continued onto camp, where we fired up the Jetboil to have some Mountain House Beef Stew. While we were eating, Greg noticed a bright light on top of the mountain in front of us. He was concerned that there was somebody crazier than I as they were climbing it at night. I quickly settled him down and pointed out that the light was on an airplane.

This evening I saw what I think was my viewing of a star burning out. It was in the southern sky, the star got very bright, similar to a flash and gone!  That was pretty cool! Time to get some sleep as there will be lots of hiking tomorrow!

Bear Track

Idaho Elk Trip 2010: Day 3

Idaho Elk Trip 2010: Day 3

I know that bull is coming up here!

We got up, shook the frost off and hiked down from where we thought the bull from the previous night came from. We talked about the setup and I made a few location bugles. We moved a little further down the ridge and gave a location bugle. Immediately a bull responded so I set Greg up in front of me about 60 yards. The bull and I chatted back-and-forth for about 20 minutes. Then I “clucked” to see if Greg had left yet to sneak in on the bull and he was right where I left him. By this time, the bull bedded down and stopped bugling.

For the afternoon hunt we set up on the opposite side of where we last heard the bull from the morning. We could never get a response from any elk in different locations and setups. There was a small herd of cows and calves that were skirting behind Greg. He was unaware of their presence until the branch snapped when they busted out of there once they winded him.  We arrived back at camp around 10 pm after a hard hike back. The night was very quiet; we never heard one bugle all evening long. Even over the next mountain, where it sounded like the elk were partying every evening and morning. I will try talking Greg into hiking over there! It was only another 3 miles from the current camp.

Idaho Elk Trip 2010: Day 2