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idahoelkinstructor 01-08-2005 11:37 AM

ELK, How Big is BIG to you?
Here I am dreaming about elk again, go figure. Anyway I want to know how big does a elk have to be for you to say WOW thats a big bull. I know of some people who honesly don't care and they will shoot any elk, be it cow or bull. I have no problem with that because I too also agree any elk is a trophy. But I myself during most years have a goal that a bull must be certin size, to be a shooter. Most years that goal is any branch antlered bull. But I have also told myself that I will not drop the string on anything but a nice 6x6 bull. I have eaten tag soup and eating elk meet from a 6x6 when I set those goals. Both IMHO are not as good eating as a young spike bull or yearling cow. But the antlers are a nice plus. If someone asks me what I think is truly big, I will tell them nothing less than a 350 class bull, and a huge bull is 380 to 390 on up. My biggest bull so far is just shy of 300 but to me he is my trophy, hard earned with a bow and never to be taken away. Sure I want to kill a bigger elk with my bow but then on the other hand I just love to elk hunt period, and I have some great memories from elk that didn't have a 6x6 rack on their head.

hillbillyhunter1 01-08-2005 11:50 AM

RE: ELK, How Big is BIG to you?
I had a great permit here last year and it was my first time elk hunting as well--I passed up some spikes and four pts (which would have been chip shots)--I was going to hold out for at least a nice 5x5 or 6x6. I did not get a shot, but thanks to the generosity of some of my partners (i.e. barebackjack) I got a little meat instead of tag soup. I have a feeling that still as a novice elk hunter I'll try to take something decent--5x or 6x or better next year with my bow and then if I do not connect-I'll try to keep the same standards thru early rifle season--then as the end gets closer--I'm sure my standards will deteriorate. I'm really going to try to devote a lot of time next year (NEXT YEAR IS THEEEEEE YEAR) and hope that at the end I'll have an elk of some sort.

Hunter_59 01-08-2005 02:31 PM

RE: ELK, How Big is BIG to you?
I've never been on an elk hunt yet but am looking forward to it this year. I have watched hunting videos, read books, and gone online to research every aspect of elk hunting. If I draw a rifle permit and am allowed to go this year I will need to set some standards of the size of bull I am willing to shoot. Naturally the first and second day of hunting the standard will be much higher than the following days. As of right now, the first and second day of hunting I will be looking for a 6x6 in the 320 class and above. After that the standards will start coming down. I view a "big" bull as being 350 and above. My standards are high for someone who has never been on an elk hunt but after researching the area I'm hunting and the outfitter I have booked I don't think this is unattainable.

Archer18 01-08-2005 02:40 PM

RE: ELK, How Big is BIG to you?
i have had the chance to see many good sized bulls, depending on the length of the royal point (4th point) looking like daggers, with sweeping eye guards you have yourself a sturdy bull. ON points after seeing the great big 6X6 that my uncle took (gross 348) with 54 inch mainbeams, its hard to compare an average 6X6 to that bull, i am after the big one boys.

gross of 265 is minimum requirement for P&Y

most hunters would say that any bull over 300 is a good sized trophy.

NVMIKE 01-08-2005 04:03 PM

RE: ELK, How Big is BIG to you?
300-330 = big ; 330-350 = real big; 350+ = oohh[:o],oohh:D,oohh[:o]

ELKINMTCWB 01-08-2005 04:21 PM

RE: ELK, How Big is BIG to you?
Here is a 270 elk I killed with my bow.

ELKINMTCWB 01-08-2005 04:23 PM

RE: ELK, How Big is BIG to you?
Ok here is a elk just over 300. rifle kill 4 years ago.

ELKINMTCWB 01-08-2005 04:33 PM

RE: ELK, How Big is BIG to you?
Here is a nice elk that is around 330. I found the head this year when I was bow hunting he died in a fence. I passed on elk this big with my bow this year to kill a 350 in the same spot.

I beleave any elk killed with a bow is very good [even a cow].I beleave each hunt should be looked at in dif ways . I would pass on a 300 elk on a guide hunt in good spot. But would kill a 270 elk on any public land hunt I will go on.

My 1st elk with a bow was a spike. It was a very memorable hunt,ate good allso.In my opinion if you are going elk hunting for your 1st time [unguided] I beleave any elk you kill would be well earnd.If you are picky you will eat tag soop 1st few years.

Most of the elk i have killed are 200 class elk WAY better than my buds no elk years.

Montana Bob 01-08-2005 06:37 PM

RE: ELK, How Big is BIG to you?
Since I live in Elk country and see them most everyday I would have to say for me anyway a big Elk would be 350 and above. As far as what I would shoot like Hillbilly say's the longer the season goes by the less my standard. Opening morning I passed a 40 yard broadside shot(Rifle) at a nice 5X5 which would have been nice by most peoples standard. This practice of passing in hopes a bigger bull almost had me eating tag soup and if not for a little unlucky calf the last day my freezer would be empty.
For the folks that live in Elk country I think the standard is a bit higher than those that don't. I also enjoy the hunt and chase aspect so it's quite easy early in the season to pass on the smaller Elk and be able to hunt the entire season in hopes of a big one. With Elk like the one pictured running around behind the house on a regular basis, it's easy to pass on the smaller one's. I would have passed on this 6 X5 1/2 (broken tine) but it was the last 7 day's of the season and 300 yards downhill from my front door.

Slamfire 01-08-2005 09:20 PM

RE: ELK, How Big is BIG to you?
I was in a camp on the Olympic Peninsula whan a guy got a bull that everybody guessed was over 1000 lbs, live weight. He was over 800 in quarters. Those Rooseveldts don't have much in the way of antlers. There was one killed in PA this year that green scored 410, and that's very, very big. :eek:

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