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Elk hunt in Co?

Old 06-17-2010, 06:17 PM
Fork Horn
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Colorado
Posts: 291

Tripple your water intake, most folks tend to mouth breeth at altitude....ya loose hydration a LOT faster!
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Old 06-18-2010, 06:55 AM
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Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 21

Thanks everyone for the advice, its all information I need to know before I go. I have heard about the ant-acids (strange but i will try it), the water is a must I know. I plan on using my T/C Pro Hunter 7Rem Mag and hopefully we will have a successfull trip. Anything else people might think of please post I appreciate any and all advice.
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Old 06-18-2010, 08:08 AM
Giant Nontypical
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 6,357

Originally Posted by Tarheelsaint View Post
Thanks Altsatian for the info, we are rilfle hunting in later October, we will be riding horses into backcountry and staying in tent camp which are heated with wood stoves. The advice on clothing is big for me since I am comfortable with the clothing for hunting in NY but CO will be all new to me.
Depending on altitude, there is liable to be considerable snow on the ground in Colorado in later October. Certainly remember to bring sunglasses. It is not pleasant being in the high country where the air is thin and the rays of the sun are consequently more powerful to spend a day using your eyes surrounded by large expanses of white snow. Maybe take two pairs of sunglasses in case one pair gets broken or lost. I used a pair of prescription sunglasses (I wear heavily corrected eyeglasses) backed up by a pair of "glacier goggles" purchased from REI that fit over eyeglasses. It was actually more convenient to use the "glacier goggles" than to change out the regular eyeglasses with the prescription sunglasses. With the glacier goggles I just pulled them off and let them hang around my neck on their elastic band. These goggles have side panels that reduce the light that come in from the sides -- unlike standard sunglasses -- and a nose patch to reduce sun exposure on nose.

Along these lines, it might be a good idea to have some sun screen along.

The best advice on clothing is to plan on layering. This allows you to take off and put back on clothes to adjust to different weather conditions. The lower layer ought to be some sort of wicking long underwear. I like to wear wool over this lower layer -- medium weight wool pants (mine are US army surplus bought for about $20 a pair -- tough and very serviceable) and medium weight wool shirt (mine are Pendleton -- two new and one purchased used via the Internet for about $20 and looks new). Wool has the desirable properties of being warm when wet and of being silent. If you think it might be very cold, you could wear heavy weight wool pants. I have a pair purchased from Filson -- "field pants" -- but frankly it seems to me that the better solution might be to instead wear a heavy weight inner layer of wicking material to gain this additional heat retention. You will need a heavy coat of some kind. I suggest an insulated parka or pull-over. You might want to get this with a rainproof but breathable outer shell, such as some kind of goretex. On the other hand, I still recommend that you have a separate rain suit available in case it flat out rains. I suppose it is unlikely you would experience rain in the high country in late October, so maybe the rain suit is optional. I would consult your guide/outfitter on that item of clothing. Warm hat and gloves are definitely advised. I have a polypropylene balaclava that I like to put over my head and pull down over my face and then I put the orange wool Filson hat on over the top of the balaclava (hence, the wool hat is oversized for my bare head but not too tight when placed over the balaclava).

Good boots are a good idea. You are liable to use horses to get close to your hunting area, but you will still be hoofing it over some rocky territory. I recommend insulated leather boots that come up above the ankles to provide support and protection to the ankles. It is easy to turn an ankle stepping on a large rock that rolls as you have transferred your weight to that foot, particularly as you may have your eyes fixed forwards at an elk or other items in your forward field of view. Additionally, if you are walking in snow you may not even be able to see what is below the snow. In fact, while walking on hillsides in snow be mindful of stepping on thin trunked trees or branches that may have fallen and be hidden under the snow. Stepping on one of these that points directly down hill hidden under the snow will lead to a likely uncontrolled fall. I happen to like Meindl Perfekt Hunter boots. These require little break-in, have some modest insulation, and provide the kind of positive ankle support I refer to above. On the other hand, for a late October hunt you may wish to have more insulation than these boots provide.

Do practice with your rifle. You should become comfortable and familiar with the specific rifle and with the specific ammo you are taking on the hunt. Different rifles and different ammo in a familiar rifle are likely to shoot differently. Some will say to do lots of practice from various field positions, at different ranges, and to become highly proficient. This seems to me like good advice, but I have not followed this advice myself. In practice, it is difficult for me, living in an urban area, to shoot frequently. I use two rifle ranges -- one is 45 miles away, the other is closer to 50 miles away. There was a rifle range about 7 miles away, but the city, after long wrangles with the range operator, coerced the land owner who leased this land to the range operator to stopping leasing the land for the rifle range. Additionally, many rifle ranges do not permit me to shoot prone, shoot sitting, shoot kneeling, or shoot offhand. Finally, these rifle ranges rarely offer the option of shooting at distances different from 100 yards. Still, you should shoot enough to be confident that your rifle is zeroed in, that it in fact shoots and cycles cartridges, and so you are comfortable handling your rifle. You should be able to operate your rifle in the dark or in poor light conditions -- cycle a round, load rounds, turn safety off and on, remove or install scope covers. I'm NOT suggesting to hunt or shoot in the dark or in unacceptably low light conditions, just handle your rifle. I mean, it is likely you may have to sling your rifle on your back in the dark, possibly load shells into the magazine in the dark, etc. Also, do shoot your rifle at least 6 weeks before leaving on your trip. If your shooting indicates that any work needs to be done on your rifle, this leaves enough time to get it fixed or replace your rifle and "shoot it in" before leaving for your trip. My guess is that gun smiths and other qualified rifle repair people may be heavily overloaded with last minute repairs during September and October, so asking for immediate turn around for your work may be greeted with a laugh or smirk but not the committment to get it done by tomorrow that you would wish for. If possible, shoot your rifle when arrived in elk camp to verify that your zero has not shifted or to detemine any adjustments needed due to thinner air and/or lower temperatures, both of which may change ballistics. On the other hand, a bunch of shooting at the elk camp may tend to spook the elk, but consult your guide/outfitter on this.

Last edited by Alsatian; 06-18-2010 at 11:30 AM.
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Old 06-18-2010, 09:44 AM
Giant Nontypical
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 6,357

Have a personal flashlight. This may be useful for answering the call of nature in the middle of the night. Carry extra batteries for your flashlight and for your digital camera and for your GPS device. Lithium type batteries provide substantially extended life. If you carry a GPS, learn how to use it before leaving on your trip. You may carry a roll of toilet paper with you and/or in your saddle bags. You may want to have a second pair of comfortable shoes for wearing around camp. Consider taking a pair of nail clippers with you.
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