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TwoBear's picture
Joined: 12/13/2010
Posts: 43

elkkill06 wrote:


I definately appreciate the offer. The reason I joined BGH was because I am not one of those guys that thinks they know everything. If I am not fooled at least once a yeaar by a big old bull or a smart old muley I am not hunting. I love hunting and like learning evrything I can.


Much can be learned from dialog. Just talking to other hunters and listening to their stories can shed some light on what I have a question about.  I just asked a fella tonight what his criteria was for sitting wallows, as I understand that is his primary way of hunting elk for the last 20 years, I figure I can get a kernal of information to put in my arsonal.  The problem on many sites is the chest beating, which ultimately leads to nothing learned, nothing gained.  I am questioned often on my philosophy, because it doesn't conform to what people see on videos, hear on CD's, and read in blogs and magazines.  I also realize that much of my perspective is from my hunting area here in Montana, and may not apply to all areas.  I think, however, there is a whole world of calling the most people are not enjoying. 

I have watched many videos where the callers made a call that simply would not work if they were hunting where 90% of us do.  I hear them make the wrong call, at the wrong time, but where they are hunting almost any sound will bring in a local bull.  They kill it, then tell us how great their call is, and for X dollars you can order one of these calls too.  The truth is, calls don't matter a hill of beans.  Sure, some have better tone than others, but it's what, when, why, and where you are calling that matters.  It starts by being able to understand what you are hearing in the elk woods. I just try sharing what I know, and gaining knowledge where I can.  I also want to add that much of what I know about elk has been learned via failure.  Learned by mistakes that I made and my desire to correct them. 

CrazyElkHunter's picture
Location: Clovis, Calif
Joined: 02/21/2010
Posts: 19

I have watched 1 wallow for the last 4 archery seasons and have had several different elk use it. One day I sat in a tree stand and watched several cows and calves during a 4 hour period drink from it. 2 different bulls hit it in less than a hour.Thumbs up

jim boyd's picture
Grand Slam Challenge Winner!
Joined: 07/06/2010
Posts: 889
Wow, Guys, I am learning a

Wow, Guys, I am learning a lot while you guys are discussing this topic, I appreciate ALL of your input VERY much - thanks for the great dialogue!


Joined: 10/08/2012
Posts: 3
I live and hunt near Butte

Dancing I live and hunt near Butte Montana. I am hunting with horse this bow season....recently I've come up on a group of four wallows that are scattered down a small drainage that leads to a larger creek. This area gets no pressure as its really hard to get to...I just happened upon it and the hike would be too hard and strenuous for most. It's like climbing through a jungle of dead fall and VERY steep rugged country!  The area all around gets hit pretty hard. Ive seen elk and deer all along the larger main drainage when out prior to hunting season. There is a heavily used game trail coming off the mountain down a revine to the wallows. Elk sign all over the place! What is the best time to sit on the wallows and what call do you suggest for someone that is a beginner? What do you suggest as a good learning tool? I've rifle hunted for the past nine years and am trying to understand more about elk and bow hunting! Will get photos of wallows next time out! This is my first year bow hunting and exploring the area more! Thanks for all the good posts! I've learned a great deal!!!!

exbiologist's picture
Location: Colorado
Joined: 09/19/2008
Posts: 2397
Welcome to BGH

Getting a little late in the year for wallows to be very reliable.  Normally I'd say mid day to dusk for a wallow sit, but I'm guessing you now have the cold weather we are experiencing, so I doubt the elk will be using them to cool off anymore this year.  Still sounds like a heavy usage area, so I wouldn't completely give up hunting there.

Joined: 10/08/2012
Posts: 3
Thanks for the reply! Do elk

Thumbs up Thanks for the reply! Do elk revisit the same wallows year after year? I also figured it was a heavily used area due to the well traveled game trail, elk sign, water and the fact there are hidden meadows close by with really no pressure on the area or four wallows in close proximity.  I'll be checking them out earlier next year...need to perfect the calls till then. The smoke has been terrible from forest fires! I've only heard the elk bugle a couple times and I'm out from before day break till dark at times! Others have said the same thing. It still gets pretty warm on some days but the nights are cooler. We camped in a tent last weekend...it was so warm last Saturday that I had to take my jacket off during the afternoon.

Joined: 08/30/2012
Posts: 9
Not to sure

Wallows are differn't in every area. I've seen some get used untill migration time or a large drought hit the area and will have traffic for a later season. I have seen them used by more then one bull early season, but I do tend to agree with someone elses post and in heavy hunted area I think wallows in timber are used by one maybe two bulls in rifle season. It's so hard to say what goes on in one wallow unless you know your area. SCOUT. Also someone once told me that if a wallow is used extremly heavy by elk the more of a chance they will stick around for later. I also wanted to say that a more open wallow with feed that they want will have more elk rather than a wallow on a timber hillside and should be hunted differntly. 

Joined: 10/08/2012
Posts: 3
What do you suggest for

What do you suggest for learning to call properly. I have only cow called and I'm aware of some of  the different bugles bulls make but will need something to help with making them sound real....right now I sound like a dying cow....lol  lol

Critter's picture
Grand Slam Challenge Winner!Moderator
Location: Western Colorado
Joined: 03/26/2009
Posts: 4433
There are tapes and videos

There are tapes and videos out there to give you the proper way to bugle. What I have found is to just get out into the hills during the rut and try it. On my first attempt to call in a elk I managed to get a raghorn 4pt to come withing 20 yards of me. You will also find out that just like people have a different voice so do elk.

Retired2hunt's picture
Grand Slam Challenge Winner!
Location: Colorado Springs, CO & Fort Myers, FL
Joined: 07/28/2011
Posts: 1624
Here is a web site that has

Here is a web site that has all of the different elk calls found within audio links. http://www.elk-hunting-tips.net/elk-sounds.html I think it does a pretty good job of showing you all of the different calls. Like Critter I did some practice by listening to some of the sounds while out in the forest. My first time using the call I was able to call in 3 different bulls to within 15 to 35 yards on 3 different days. Good luck on your calls and your hunts!

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