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First time Elk Hunt

Old 03-07-2006, 08:55 PM
  #1  
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Default First time Elk Hunt

Going on an archery Elk hunt in New Mexico this Sept. Outfitter booked and half paid for. I live in South East Missouri,how do I get in shape for the high altitude? I have had people tell me 2 hours of walking here is like 30 minutes there. Any other get in shape pointers would be appriciated.
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Old 03-07-2006, 09:10 PM
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Default RE: First time Elk Hunt

Anything to increase your wind and tone leg muscles. Stairstep machine, treadmill, long bike rides, etc. A rare condition strikes some people new to the altitude called altitude sickness. Dizziness, fatigue, shortness of breath, nausea, and headachescan signal altitude sickness. It doesn't effect everybody (mostly heavy people or those with existing lung conditions), but there's not much you can do.
I wouls recommend bringing clothes you can wera in "layers". It could easily have frost on the windshield in the am, and t-shirts by early pm.
Maybe most overlooked, comfortable shoes! Wear tennies if you have to.
I prefer a waterproof, low top, lightweight hiking boot.
Shoot straight, and good luck.
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Old 03-07-2006, 09:11 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2006
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Default RE: First time Elk Hunt

Running stairs will help you get in physical shape, Idon't know of anything that will help with altitude. I've been to New Mexico several time and it has really not been to bad. You need to adjust.
What unit are you hunting and with what outfitter?
Good luck and Great hunting!
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Old 03-07-2006, 09:20 PM
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Default RE: First time Elk Hunt

You really need to increase your lung capacity if you're going to be hunting at high elevation so that you can hold more oxygen. Quite possibly the best way to do this is swimming laps. When you swim laps and push yourself hard, you are forced to hold your breath while still exerting energy, so your lung capacity is increased faster than it is doing activities like running. You also need to run/jog to get your legs into shape too, though, so don't rely on swimming alone to prepare you.

Almost forgot, you can increase your recovery time by running at say 50% speed for about 125yrds then sprinting full speed for about 50 yrds. Run like this for about ten minutes a night, and you will be amazed at how fast you can recover after a grueling walk up a mountain. This is one of the ways we get into shape for soccer, but I can assure you it works just as good for hunting.
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Old 03-08-2006, 09:14 AM
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Join Date: Apr 2005
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Default RE: First time Elk Hunt

In that I'm from missouri myself and I've been on a few elk hunts I think I can answer your guestion. NOTHING in missouri will prepare you for altitude! Get in the best shape of your life and then get in better shape. Find the steepest rockiest hill you can and hike up and down it all the time. If you get in good shape you will adjust quicker to the altitude. nothing but altitude will prepare you for altitude.
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Old 03-08-2006, 04:11 PM
  #6  
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Default RE: First time Elk Hunt

Best prevention for altitude related sickness/problems..........hydrate!
Drink water and lots of it. It will also give you something do when you stop every 5 minutes to catch your breath! You want to be in good condition, but you WILL be sucking air! Just a price us flatlanders pay. But it's not that bad, as with most things, moderation and sound judgement will mitigate the problems you will encounter.
Personally, I am prone to "altitude" headaches and I find if I "over hydrate" the problem is significantly reduced. Throw in some extra ibuprofen just in case. Works for me.
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Old 03-08-2006, 08:08 PM
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Default RE: First time Elk Hunt

Wow! Thanks all, for the good info. Seems like I've got my work cut out for me.

Going to be huting near Chama if I get drawn, Gilia if not.
Hunting with H & A outfitters out of Santa Fe, NM.
Found them with the help of Greg Ray of the Outdoor Connection.
He's like a booking agent, a real nice guy who goes the extra.
He helped me even after a car crashed into his house, had to have a foot operation, and got a staff infection. While he was in the hospital he had his wife to call and check how things were going, then right after he got outhe called to make sure I had gotten my forms and stuff. I would recomend him for info on any outdoor adventure.
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