RIFLE ELK HUNTS
During the rifle elk season bulls have started to move away from their cows. They become more solitary, demanding that hunters first find them by hiking to the ridgetops and glassing. Once located, we slow down and make a plan… and the hunt is on! Our rifle elk hunts are all about thoughtful planning and putting in the time. Average shot distance is 100 yards. We like to get close, and we generally make an approach to our animals in deep timber. Slipping in on a big, solo bull is as good as it gets!
End of October through End of November
270 mag, 280, 7mm mag, 30-06, 300
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This area of Montana has good populations of elk.
Our corner of Montana has good populations of elk. Unlike regions further east and south that have huge herds of animals, our area has small bands of elk averaging 6-12 animals. These elk do not migrate, but basically just live and travel a few miles from the ridges to the valley floor and back again each day. Ours is a region of dense timber and we hunt our elk more or less like we hunt our trophy whitetails. At LOC we like to hoof it and you can expect to cover a fair number of miles each day. Typically, if you’re concentrating on elk, we will start hiking an hour before daylight and head for the ridgetops or the heads of drainages. Elk like security, and that means they’re not going to be close to the roads or hanging around the creek bottoms when shooting light approaches.
Early in the season (last week of October) the residual effects of the rut remain, and it’s not uncommon to find bulls still traveling with cows. Bugling and cow calling can still be effective at this time of year. As the season progresses, however, bulls will become increasingly independent. They will concentrate exclusively on feeding, resting, and recovering from the rigors of the rut and at this point it’s all about putting in the miles, finding an animal to work with, and doggedly chasing him until you get a shot.
We encourage all our guests to purchase the deer/elk big game combination tag. This tag allows you to concentrate on the animal of your choice, but not pass up a shot at the other species if one presents itself. Keep in mind, in this region deer and elk are found in essentially the same general areas. It is valuable to keep your options open when hunting big game with Linehan Outfitting.