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Blanco Basin Elk

Old 07-16-2008, 03:18 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Runaway Bay ,TX
Posts: 2
Default Blanco Basin Elk

Hey Elk hunters,

Last year was my first elk hunt, we did see a few cows and one bull. But I am not sure of our area.
I live in Texas and really have no idea if the area that we are hunting is a good area. I am praying that I can get some good advice from some guys who may hunt the same area. Its between Chromo and P.springs off Blanco Basin road on cr P20 near opal lake. Have you been there? Is that a good area?I have read some of the other postings saying that the elk are higher than what we are hunting, is that true? we are at between 8300 and8800 feet.
We bow hunt, and last year we hunted from sep 9th to the 15th, are the bulls allready talking? if so what kind of calls do you recomend? Thanks for your knowledge.
cooterbrown is offline  
Old 07-17-2008, 07:29 PM
Fork Horn
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Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: wyoming
Posts: 120
Default RE: Blanco Basin Elk

Hey bud:
Elevation is relative to where you are and the time of year and the amount of hunting pressure. So don't let the other stuff confuse you. Stick to your area and learn it well. If you are hunting the first half of Sept., you need to find where there are clusters of massive and vicious rubs from elk. Not just the get out of bed and rub a tree type of rubs, the thrash the tree to the ground type of rubs. Usually these will be fairly close to or even right at a water source. Bulls need water that time of year, lots of it. Most of the places elk call home are full of water so not always will water be the main factor. Moist cool north facing slopes with wet swampy areas are a good place to start. Look for heavy timber and relatively flat benches that have berry patches near them.
Right about the 15th to the 17th of Sept. there is a transition from pre-rut to the full rut. That's when breeding takes priority over fighting and tree thrashing. Then the activity moves to more open country. In this day of heavy pressure open country could be as little as just more open sparse timber. In less pressured areas they may still go into open meadows for rutting activity. Once a herd bull has his cows he gets very shy about any other bulls and spends his days hiding from and fending off any and all challengers. He would rather run and hide than fight. Thats why calling almost never works on a herd bull. There are ways it works almost every time but I won't go into that. Kind of a trade secret. Suffice it to say calling herd bulls is not a very promising type of hunting.
I am a bit familiar with where you are hunting. I have seen elk most of the way up that road but for the most part it was cows and calves early in the summer. Never saw any in the fall down low. Lots of turkeys there though. And a good number of bears. Near the end of the road there is a jeep trail heading to the east. Pretty much anything to the north of that jeep trail should be pretty good for you. There is a creek about a mile from the road. Work that creek up as high up the mountain as you can get. Look for some of the small tributaries to the creek. Pick the ones that have the flattest terrain and follow them uphill and look for the wallows and the tree rubs. Wallows will work better after about the 17th of Sept. If you find the elk, watch the wind and dog them carefully and quietly. The very seldom watch their back trail if they have not been spooked. Just dog them until the hold up to graze or bed. Once they make a commitment then move in as close as possible and use a cow call on them.
Good luck to you bud.
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Old 07-20-2008, 09:07 PM
Typical Buck
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: PUEBLO, CO, USA
Posts: 636
Default RE: Blanco Basin Elk

Its a good area, anywhere between South Fork and west of Dgo is good elk and mulie hunting. My friend lives east of Bayfield and he gets his elk and mulies off his front porch. Be sure of your boundaries so you dont get on the res by accident, and good luck on your hunt.
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Old 07-22-2008, 07:07 PM
Fork Horn
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Kansas
Posts: 136
Default RE: Blanco Basin Elk

I camped about 500 yards from Opal Lake in 2004, and it was very over-run with people walking their dogs and a school class hiked up that area while I was hunting. It was in Oct. during the 1st rifle season.
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Old 07-23-2008, 01:56 PM
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Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Runaway Bay ,TX
Posts: 2
Default RE: Blanco Basin Elk

Thanks for the info, Last year was our first year to elk hunt,we only seen 2 hunters in 8 days of hunting. we did see a few people walking and driving upto and aroung the opal lake area, but we were walking in about 3 miles the other direction. Lots of sign, a few cows, 1 spike and 1 young 6x6. I thought that I would get more feed back from hunters in that area but maybe its just not that popular of a place to hunt. we chose it because of another hunter in the group, and because we are allready driving 12to14 hours to get there. I would be up to a change if it was the same distance.
Thanks for the knowledge
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