Old 08-06-2011, 05:58 AM
Champlain Islander
Dominant Buck
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Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Vermont
Posts: 21,365

I agree with Muley. I live at 118' ASL and stay at 9100í and hunt up to 11,500í when I go to Colorado on hunts or vacation. I just returned from a summer vacation in south central Colorado and can tell you that altitude sickness is nothing to ignore. After my first year out there and getting very sick I now take prescription meds to condition my blood. Getting out there in advance of the hunt is important. You can use the time for some low impact scouting and spending at least 3-5 days getting acclimated to the altitude. I have shot 4 elk in the 5 years out there and all hunts have been DIY with manual quartering/ boning and packing the animals. Our first year out there was a real eye opener. None of us had ever been elk hunting or even seen a wild one. We all just studied the land and hunted them like deer without much calling. They are huge and if they are in the area they leave a lot of sign so homing in on them is pretty easy. The hard part is they are usually pretty high up so that alone puts you at a disadvantage. The wind out there is a real killer and staying down wind can be a chore since the currents are always following the land contour and getting down the canyons without spooking them is hard. Once spooked they go forever and so you quickly learn that using the wind is probably the most important thing. The Hoochie Mama is a good call since you canít screw it up. I would say use it sparingly though and use woodsmanship and stealth to still hunt your way close enough for a shot.
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