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Vanguard's picture
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Joined: 08/27/2010
Posts: 15
Need to start prepping for first elk hunt

Well we got our confirmation cards in the mail today, both my fiance and myself got our elk tags (spike only) for the Starkey unit.  I had actually figured I had a better chance of getting a deer tag and have as of yet been prepping this year for a deer hunt not elk.  So I had been working on closer range shots with a smaller caliber rifles (old Ruger Deerslayer, a .223 carbine, a few shots on a 700 in .243 and my Vanguard .308 the only one acceptable for elk at range).  Looks like I need to start practicing with my Savage 111 300 Win Mag again.

So far my preps for this year have moved around getting in shape, I have dropped about 12 pounds so far and I have been working on my endurance.  I am planning on keeping up with the weight loss (need to anyway) and the endurance as much as I can before season starts.  I figure we will start going up and scouting out areas and try and find some good locations.  Ideally I hope to find a location where I can find good travel patterns and just sit and wait for them to come to me instead of me having to stalk for a long ways.  I am a fair shot with the 300 and have so far shot it accurately out to just over 400 yards.  I am hoping to expand that range though I seriously doubt I would take a shot that far off in the field.

Any tips and suggestions you all have for me to give us a better chance of having a successful hunt this year would be greatly appreciated.  Can be anything from locations to trainings for the summer (which I happen to have off this year woohoo!) to gear I should make sure to have with me.

I will be checking back on the site as frequently as possible though we are heading up to the Snake the end of this week to do some fishing and rock chuck shooting.

I hope others managed to get some good hunts for this year.  I was shocked to get elk and not deer.  If anything I figured it would be the other way around.

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Location: Montana
Joined: 10/24/2006
Posts: 448
Sounds like your off to a

Sounds like your off to a good start.Oregon can be good elk hunting if you do your home work. BTW you will never HAVE to shoot beyond 400 yards. Thats what legs and feet are for.

Hike alot, get cardio up practice often in shooting positions i.e. not on a bench

numbnutz's picture
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Location: portland,oregon
Joined: 09/06/2007
Posts: 3058
I have had that tag several

I have had that tag several times, you'll have fun and see a bunch of elk, If i remeber right that hunt is in NOV and the elk will start there trek to lower elevations. If you want to know where they'll be just PM me and i'll let you know what area to hunt. As far as getting in shape your on the right track already. as far as shots they'll be less than 100yrds so you dont have to worry about shooting to much out to 300-400 yrds.

Vanguard's picture
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Joined: 08/27/2010
Posts: 15
I actually went to the range

I actually went to the range last weekend and I was setting out my targets when out just past the 150 yard line was buck just standing there watching me.  I dialed in the Weatherby and it did beautifully like usual.  Had an iron plate sitting at 100 yards that was about 4 inches tall and maybe 8 inches wide that made for a fun target.  The Savage drove me crazy because the plastic stock on it just has WAY to much flex.  Sadly it is a DBM model so there is not much in options for aftermarket stocks.  I might have to modify something.

 

This hunt is actually the first spike hunt at the end of October, there is a second one at the end of Nov.  I am still trying to decide which rifle I want to take with me on the hunt.  I am better all around using the Weatherby, while the Savage I am good off hand but off a bipod or bags oddly I seem less accurate with it.

numbnutz's picture
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Location: portland,oregon
Joined: 09/06/2007
Posts: 3058
.

Looks like they changed the dates on this hunt, in years past it was the in the second week of november. I dont know how you applied for it, but i would aplly for a tag that i had no chance at drawing and use this hunt as my second choice, that way i could build points but still go get some meat for the freezer, and your pretty much gonna draw this tag as a second choice. I would go wioth what ever  gun you feel the most comfortable with. check your PM one is on its way.

Vanguard's picture
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Joined: 08/27/2010
Posts: 15
Thanks for the tips in the

Thanks for the tips in the PM.

One of the biggest things that is annoying me right now on the 300 is the stock flex, I think that I am going to have to modify a stock to work with the DBM.  I am also working on dialing in a new scope and base on it trying to get things just right and of course the last time I went to the range with it I forgot my tools for making adjustments to the mounting.  I have a feeling if I get it all dialed in I will be packing it. 

At least things didn't go as bad as my fiances stepfather's scope 3rd shot in with his Savage in .270 his cross hairs dropped and turned in the scope.  That was interesting.  I kept telling him to not buy cheap scopes.

I will start scouting out some of those areas you mentioned numbnutz.

Ca_Vermonster's picture
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Grand Slam Challenge Winner!Moderator
Location: San Diego, CA
Joined: 07/27/2007
Posts: 5731
Very cool!  Congrats to you

Very cool!  Congrats to you both!

The only time I ever hunted elk was in Oregon, and although unsuccessful, I loved every minute of it!

Keep asking the questions, alot of good guys here.  Best of luck!

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Joined: 06/13/2010
Posts: 35
Your Vanguard 308 is perfect.

Your Vanguard 308 is perfect.  Load up some Barnes TSX 150's or Partition 165's and you're good to go! Thumbs up

Here's a Howa/Vanguard 308 on the job for ya!!

 

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Joined: 06/13/2010
Posts: 35
first elk hunt

I just thought of something.  If this is your first elk hunt are you ready to process the animal once it's down?  It's not a small job and it can be pretty imposing if you haven't done it before.     

Vanguard's picture
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Joined: 08/27/2010
Posts: 15
Lucky I have never cleaned

Lucky I have never cleaned anything the size of an elk before though I have several smaller critters starting with a sheep when I was 12 and working on the ranch.  Its been a few years but thankfully I have a strong stomach and stay calm basically no matter the conditions.  Our biggest challenge I think will be Tiff's reaction to shooting and gutting out a critter, she is worried she will chicken out.

Well season starts on Wednesday however a family friend has been diagnosed with cancer and does not have long so I will be visiting them on the other side of the state that day.  I have also been sick a bit and have not been able to work on my conditioning as much as I had hoped to by now.  I should do fine so long as I don't have to pack to terribly far.

We will be setting up camp at the family mining claim just north of Vey Ranch.  Everytime anyone in the family is up there they are always seeing a good number of elk, one time wandering right through camp.

Oh Tiff will be using the Vanguard, we never did find her another rifle yet this year.  It is a bit heavy and long for her but she can handle the recoil from the .308 well.  I stumbled onto an early 70's built Winchester Model 70 in 30.06 for a song and topped it off with a Redfield 4-12 scope, at 100 yards it will put 3 rounds into a single ragged hole.

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