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What about upper NECK shots for ELK?

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What about upper NECK shots for ELK?

Old 07-19-2010, 11:12 AM
Typical Buck
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The head and neck shot is not the preferred shot. The vital organs area is the prefferend shot IMO. I suppose I would take a neck shot under the right circumstances but admittedly I have been presented with only a head or neck in the past and I always let them walk. When I was a kid I saw one go bad and I'd rather eat tag soup than repeat what I saw.

Core-lokts still get it done but there are better bullets out there IMO. Clkt's on occasion break up into many small pieces when hitting bone and cause some meat loss but they will put the animal down.

I'm not a fan of using my voice to stop game but circumstances would dictate doing it. It will stop them sometimes but they usually only stop for a second then bolt to the next state. I would rather stay silent and return another day hoping the game stayed in the general area. If it's the last day and the last hour of the hunt I suppose I'd serenade them if I thought it'd help.
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Old 07-19-2010, 03:14 PM
Join Date: Mar 2010
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Always go with the lungs shot. Think about it, if YOU can't breathe, how long are you going to last? Not very. Give the animal it's time to lay down and expire after the shot, don't need to push it. As far as ammo, I shoot Hornady BTSP in 162 gr. Rem. 7MM. I use core-lockt with my .35 remington and love it, works great on WI Whitetail. Use what you feel works best for you and your gun and stick with it. We all have different ideas and approaches to things, but, if you stick with what works, punch a hole or two in the lungs, you will be punching your tag. I agree with the others...you can sacrifice a rib or 2....good luck!
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Old 07-19-2010, 03:25 PM
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If you are confident you can make the shot go for it.

I have seen shot and shot a lot of deer and a few elk shot in the neck and none went very far.
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Old 07-19-2010, 05:51 PM
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I don't understand what is so friggin hard about shooting a a big game animal in the chest or shoulder????????????

If you want to see how small a target you can hit and successfully kill the animal go prairie dog hunting, rock chuck hunting, crow hunting, ground hog hunting, etc... etc...
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Old 07-21-2010, 02:20 AM
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There's absolutely nothing hard about hitting an animal's shoulder that's about the size of a stop sign. I know that's alittle large on the comparision but the point is it's not all that small. Most people do not shoot as well as they think while hunting. And they do not put the bullet where it needs to go most of the time. Your seasoned hunters like most that post alot on this site can probably dot the elk in the eyeball giving a proper rest. But some hunters need to stay in that safety zone of the rib cage lung/heart area. Some hunters get so excited they blast away at an animal and never touch it.

Recently last year I had two hunters on a rest calm situation both miss a bull ranged at 190 yards broadside shot. Once I had three hunters miss a large bull 10 shots 250yds the bull stood still for the first four shots believe it or not. After the four shots of course the elk was leaving country fast. I've had a hunter miss another monster at 25yds. You name the yardage and I've seen them miss it up to 450yds. Beyond that if they want to shoot they draw blood and don't get the animal their done besides tracking that one animal.

In defense of all the bad shots' I've seen on elk I seen a hand full of men that had complete control of themselves makes some mighty fine shots on elk, even if it was their very first elk hunt. It's all about controlling yourself. Magnums won't help you, scopes won't help you, bullet design won't help you. You have to put it there first.

Back to the wounding part I know there's people that have seen more taken than myself and maybe some would disagree but I don't think many would. It's not about caliber, gun set up or bullets (unless your shooting full metal jackers or varmit bullets) on taking elk. It's 100% shot placement on all big game 100% of the time. Like someone said previous they can't breath their dead. So go ahead blast a cannonball through the shoulder blowing a baseball size hole of bone and blood shot meat out the other side of the animal. But be warned hit that shoulder bone at the wrong angle and you better have open country to make that second back up shot your gonna need it. I've even seen a mule deers shoulder turn a 300 win mag 180 gr bullet.

I'm pretty sure in Big Bulls defense he's an apt shooter and hunter but alot of people are not. And they should learn from others mistakes. Once in awhile I mess up a shot too human err is a mother. But be mindful when mentally training your self where your going to hold on an animal for most common shots because that will stick with you for life and not every situation will let you take that shot.
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Old 07-21-2010, 11:03 AM
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Originally Posted by Blackelk View Post

It's 100% shot placement on all big game 100% of the time. Like someone said previous they can't breath their dead.
Those that know my posts know I've been beating this drum for a while but I just wanted to respond to this portion of your post.

My father was a very simple man. Doesn't mean he wasn't smart but was very simple in his approach to most things and he taught me this very same concept. Shot placement is 100% and don't worry about the rest.

When I was about 15 years old I one day asked him if I could take my favorite .223 out elk hunting. He bought me the rifle 6 months earlier and I fell in love with it. He told me that I could shoot the 30-06 fine so I should take that.

When we were driving up to camp I told him I didn't want to question his judgement but I didn't understand why shot placement was EVERYTHING but he wanted me to take the 30-06 instead of my favorite rifle of all time to shoot. After all I could dot an I with that thing.

Being the man he was he was more annoyed than anything with the question and never really answered. Looking back perhaps he understood that there was some contradiction there and he wasn't the type of man that liked to be questioned by a young boy.

To this day he doesn't see his own contradiction and still carries his simple view towards shooting. Since that day when I was 15 I haven't brought up the subject again. Shot placement is all that matters he says over and over but I get a chuckle when he pulls out his favorite blonde walnut stocked 30-06 with a nice scope, floated barrel, and his handloads with heavy premium bullets to go elk hunting. The real funny thing he isn't a fan of scopes and still totes an old open sighted 30-30 for muleys although he does seem to be a bit more accurate with 30-06.

After becoming an adult and learning how my father works I've learned that when he says "shot placement is all that matters" I know he really means that it's really important and that's his way of emphasizing that.

Obviously I am a more complex man than my father in the way I approach things, at least on the outside. While his lesson wasn't lost on me in that shot placement is very important, I also understand that there a lot of physics involved between pulling the trigger and an animal breathing it's last breath. I understand that in nature for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction and therefore speed, weight, construction, and other factors never react exactly the same way to the same circumstances.

I shared this story as a way to convey my point of view. If you think it was just rambling....I'd have to chuckle because that's what my father would say.
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Old 07-23-2010, 08:23 PM
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I do not like the neck shot and have seen it go badly wrong. However, it has it place and I did take a Muley with a neck shot because he was only 15 yards away and facing me straight on. I really didn't want the round to run laterally through his body so I went for the neck and at that range I felt confident and I was right.
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Old 07-25-2010, 01:59 AM
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After becoming an adult and learning how my father works I've learned that when he says "shot placement is all that matters" I know he really means that it's really important and that's his way of emphasizing that.

It may be an overstatement, but I would argue that his feelings aren't simple. Look at this way, "Having money is the only thing that matters in investing." Not true, in theory...you can put your $1,000 down at 3% interest and make a little money. But the guy who can invest a few million is still making more in interest than we'll pull down in a year.

Same thing with calibers. It's all about shot placement, but you have to get to the point where putting a shot in about the right area is enough to give you a good result. Shot placement, and investment choice is easy to change. Caliber, and bankroll is not...
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Old 07-26-2010, 11:57 AM
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Originally Posted by Gromky View Post
Same thing with calibers. It's all about shot placement...
Right, shot placement is everything ONLY AFTER you've dealt with the other stuff like using the right caliber with the right bullet. His view is simplistic to me because he only spoke of placement but he obviously concerned himself with other things like caliber and bullet weight.

Would you be comfortable hunting elk with a .22 even with supreme accuracy outside of a survival situation? You are probably saying "of course not that's silly" and if you did you may not even realize it but you put some forethought into caliber and bullet weight and construction meaning placement can't be 100% if you spend time worrying about other factors. If you're answer is "no" to the .22 question then you can't logically argue placement is everything.

That's why I say my father takes a simplistic approach. He confuses common sense with knowledge and he never did teach me a thing about calibers and bullets. Had to learn it all on my own.
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Old 07-28-2010, 10:04 AM
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Originally Posted by Blackelk View Post
Your post
Thank you for that. GREAT post.

That's what started this thread was that in my (Alaska) hunting moose with Dad 30years ago...we got close and shot for the upper neck just behind the skull. But they were usually not fast/jumpy animals like I guess Elk are. Maybe that's the BIG difference.

I'm looking foreward to this NEW (Arizona) adventure.
I'll be shooting a Sporterized Mauser (30-06) that I just got, and Dad and I re-built together. (I think I'll try those Remington A-frames).

I'm 48 and he's 83, and I figured we needed a father/son project...and I was ALSO tired of being reminded about the "custom" Rem721 in .300weatherby that he gave me that I traded for an M1Garand when I was young and foolish. So, I hoped that a little "project" together would help temper that foolish mistake a bit. I'm even going to have a special "commemorative" coin made!

From THIS:

Had to touch it up and get rid of that "red" color.

Here's the result: (still needs the final Linseed...but I'm letting the stain dry REAL well first). Touched up the blueing in the process. New screws, etc.

Last edited by AZguy; 07-28-2010 at 10:36 AM.
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