Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Arizona Elk Hunting-Elk Calling Tips Part 2

Here is a brief video on using the bugle to locate bulls while elk hunting.  I don't use the bugle that much and rely primarily on cow calling but there is definitely a time when a bugle comes in handy.

We just got up to Unit 9 late this afternoon and set up camp. Jeanne and I went for a ride and did a little hike and heard our first bugle for 2012. This bull was pushing cows in a small meadow.  Should be a fun year!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Arizona Elk Hunting-Elk Calling Tips Part 1**New Video**

Elk season is upon us and the bulls are starting to bugle.  We hope everyone has a chance to get into the high country and hear one of the best sounds that God has ever created, the elk bugle.  This video shows a couple of different cow elk sounds that are effective while trying to call a bull in.  I have had some good emails and voicemails with questions about calling.  I will try to answer them as best that I can on this blog and by way of video.  Good Huntin' to those of you across the West who have elk tags in your pockets!

Listen to the video below of friend Steve Chappell demonstrating his excited cow call.  This is a great sound.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Arizona Elk Hunting-How to Call Elk

I received an email from a savvy elk hunter who has hunted many states for elk and has had some good success calling in and harvesting bulls.  He went on to say that he helped a friend last year on a Arizona archery elk hunt but had very little success actually calling bulls into bow range.  He asked me my opinion on what he was doing or not doing wrong.  This question opens a can of worms but here is my answer.

I would like to say first and foremost that I have been routinely schooled by many Arizona bulls both young and old.  I have made more mistakes while calling and hunting elk than you could imagine.  Most of my success calling and hunting elk has come from years of trial and error.  I believe this September will be my 18th year in a row taking the entire month of September off of work to film, observe, chase, and interact with elk.  I have learned a ton from just being around elk and watching them in their natural environment.  I have seen young bulls do some very smart things and I have seen some old bulls do some very dumb things.  It seems just when I think I have them figured out they throw a curve ball my way.  That is the fun part though sometimes also extremely frustrating.  God created elk with an amazing sense of awareness that makes them one of the worlds most intriguing big game animals.  My answer to the question might take multiple posts but here is the short answer.  My answer may change depending on the the exact timing and stage of the rut and the attitude and posture of some particular elk.

Always remember, one day an elk might come running into your call and the next day have nothing to do with you.  There can be a number of reasons for both scenarios.  Spending lots of time with elk will help you in determining what to do and what not to do.

Here are my suggestions if you want a cow elk to come to you.
1)  Try to read the mood of the elk prior to making any type of noise.  If the subject elk seems mellow then you need to be mellow.  If they are acting aggressive or agitated then you can call with the same mood and tone.
2)  High pitched calf calls can be deadly when trying to call cow elk.
3) Get in a position that makes it easy for the elk to come to you.  Don't attempt to call a cow where you know she won't or doesn't want to come to.(I highly recommend checking out Roe Hunting Resources Tutorials on calling elk, pay special attention to Chris's "See you first" and "the Doorway" concepts.  Chris has done an exceptional job of explaining the two concepts in a way that makes complete sense.  In my opinion, he couldn't be any more right on with his analysis)
4.  In my opinion, most people call too loud and one dimensional.  Try to get some realism into your tonal quality and sound.
5.  Call with confidence.  If you are timid and lack confidence the elk can detect that in your call.

I will cover my suggestions on "How to Call in a Arizona bull" in another post. 

See the Elk Calling tips video below.  Go get em'!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Long Range Glassing with Kowa Highlanders Binoculars

Darr and I have been using big optics for years.  We first started using Doctor Optik 40X binoculars for long range glassing.  When the Outdoorsmans in Phoenix,  announced the arrival of the 32X Kowa Highlanders, we bought a pair and have been trading time between the two on our hunts.  Over the years of using both the Kowa and the Doctor binoculars, we have come to the conclusion that the Kowas are a step above the Doctors.  The edge to edge clarity is the factor that pushed us over the top.  The Kowas definitely make us better at finding game.  We have found many trophy animals over the last couple seasons with the Kowas.  With some great trophy hunts on the horizon in 2012 for Colburn and Scott Outfitters, Darr and I felt adding an additional pair to our arsenal would be advantageous.  Now we will both have "Kowa Vision". 

I have to admit that my main concern when I first saw the Kowa Highlanders was the angled eye piece.  Once I used them consistently for about a week I got used to the angle and now it seems second nature.  The Outdoorsmans also sells a small lightweight stool that is essential when using the Kowas due to the angled eyepiece.  The stool is very comfortable and makes glassing for extended periods of time enjoyable.  There are three eyepieces for the Kowa binoculars, 21X, 32X (which comes standard) and 50X.  I think each eyepiece could have its benefits in certain applications but we think the 32X is perfect for everyday glassing no matter what kind of trophy you are after.  I am anxiously awaiting the arrival of the 21X and 50X eyepeices to test out.  We appreciate the guys at the Outdoorsmans for constantly raising the bar and continuing to carry the most cutting edge hunting gear on the market!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Arizona Unit 9 Archery Elk Season 2012

We just drove in from Colorado and we made a stop in Unit 9 to check on the conditions for the upcoming Arizona archery elk season.  Things look very green and every tank we checked had water!  We found this bull already completely rubbed.  More to come!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Fishing with the Winke's

Jeanne and I had the pleasure of having the Winke family for guests this week.  We enjoyed some fishing, biking, dining and fellowship.  If you aren't familiar with Bill's show, you should get to know it because it is the most informative whitetail hunting show on the web and on TV.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

The Meateater Hunts Buffalo with Colburn and Scott Outfitters

Steve Rinella and the Meateater crew came and hunted Buffalo with us in Mexico.  Steve chose to do the self guided option and harvested a nice cow buffalo.  The episode can be seen on the Sportsmans Channel.  Check out the MeateaterTV's You Tube channel.

Click here to see what Steve "the Meateater" Rinella had to say about hunting with Colburn and Scott Outfitters in Mexico.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Floating the Roaring Fork

Friends Trent Swanson and Rob Gillette came over for a day of fishing on the Fork.  We had a great time fishing, chatting and animal watching!

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