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TwoBear's picture
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Joined: 12/13/2010
Posts: 42
The better question perhaps,

The better question perhaps, is how far can you pack one out?  I've been elk hunting for near 20 years and I have been a part of a ton of kills.  I have never gotten one out whole.  First, you should evaluate your equipment and make sure you have available help if necessary.  Second, you should be competant at boning out an elk in the field and be able to keep the meat cool.  Finally, you should be honest about what you can do physically and make sure you can get it out.  I am sure you can do all those things, but I have unfortunately seen folks who thought they could get it out, or didn't care. 

Once you are comfortable and confident that you can extract an animal from X distance, then it is really a matter of what you are willing to do.  To me, elk are a tough animal to take, and big bulls very difficult.  I don't want to be 80 years old wishing I had gone the extra mile.  Once that trophy is on the wall and the steaks on the barbie, it is always worth the effort.  Granted, I have mules and horses, but believe me, we do our fair share of back packing horns and meat just to get it to the mules.  No matter where clients shoot a bull, we will get it out.  Sometimes it's in a nasty hole, but when we come riding into the trailhead with a set of antlers on the mules, it is definately worth it:)

 

www.elkoutfitters.com

SGM
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Location: Canon City, Colorado
Joined: 08/13/2011
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Longest I ever packed out elk

Longest I ever packed out elk was about 3.5 miles (we dropped 3 cows) of course all up hill and all on our backs. I sure wish we had the game cart I know have. As I get older I still do not limit myself as to distance but would like to keep it under 3 miles for sure if on foot. Ifon horse back there is no limit to me.  Very good point about how far "can" you pack out an elk due to physical ability. 2 or 3 miles at 10,000 feet up and down hills and over obsticals is at least 10 times harder on your body than 2-3 miles in the flat land.  

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Location: Colorado
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If I can see my Jeep from the

If I can see my Jeep from the kill. The distance is just right.  Yes

Critter's picture
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Location: Western Colorado
Joined: 03/26/2009
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Long Ways off

Still Hunter wrote:

If I can see my Jeep from the kill. The distance is just right.  Yes

I've done that but the problem was that I was still 5 miles away from my vehicle but I could see it from the kill site.  Confused

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Location: Colorado
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It works out for me, because

It works out for me, because I can't see far.  Big smile

WishIWasHunting's picture
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Location: Brighton, CO
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Since I am in pursuit of my

Since I am in pursuit of my first elk, my initial inclination is to say that I would go as far as it takes to get an elk.  However, since I have never been in the situation where I had to make that decision, I can't say that is the case.  So long as the situation is safe, and it is physically possible to recover the elk, I think it would be difficult for me to pass on a shot opportunity on an elk.  As far as how far in I am willing to hike in pursuit of elk, I have not yet set a personal limit.  From my 3 previous elk hunts, I am still figuring out what I like/want out of the hunt experience.  I am sure I will find my limit, and I would be that the first elk I get on the ground will be a frustrating distance from the vehicle.  

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Location: Colorado
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Going to get the elk is the

Going to get the elk is the easy part. The first time I killed an elk I thought I killed an elelphant when I walked up to it.

It's a lot of meat to carry back.

BuckBuster26's picture
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Location: Fort Collins, CO
Joined: 10/19/2011
Posts: 48
I wish i had a limit like most of you

My father and I have muscular dystrophy and it is very hard for us to walk long distances, so mainly stick to hunitng deer in the NW corner of the state. We are very limited on physical activity but we still get out there every year for some deer. We always have elk tags as well but usually dont see any that we can eaisly access after the shot. My dad has gotten one bull in his life a nice 5x6 and I would love the chance to take one like that in my lifetime (i know im only 27 and have a lot of years left but every year its getting harder and harder).

Joined: 10/11/2011
Posts: 21
The bull I got this year was

The bull I got this year was 8 miles from my vehicle. I had another person with me took us 2 long long full days to pack it out and about 50 Red Bulls "I wished it gave me wings that day" but I would do it again but with horse's for sure. 

Retired2hunt's picture
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Location: Colorado Springs, CO & Fort Myers, FL
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  Well before getting my

 

Well before getting my first bull elk I was prepared to go as far as necessary... but after hauling him out I will be changing my tactics for future hunts and will most likely not go more than a couple miles unless I can pursuade the wife that I must have an ATV!  lol