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Elk Rut

Old 01-28-2007, 05:24 PM
  #1  
Spike
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Default Elk Rut

Hello to everyone. This is my first post. My sons and I are going to Idaho this year for a archery elk hunt. We are going unguided and I was wondering when is the best time or when is the peak of the rut for elk? We will be hunting around Challis, Idaho.Any info is greatly appreciated. We have about a 10 day window. Thanks......PaLuke
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Old 01-28-2007, 05:43 PM
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Default RE: Elk Rut

PaLuke,

I have never hunted elk in Idaho before, however here in Colorado the elk rut is concluded by late October. I have found that the peak isaround the third week in September. Bugling is at its highest point alot of times around the middle of September. It is an amazing experience, calling in a thousand pound bull elk from the ground, who comes in thrashing and slobbering everywhere after stalking him for miles! Totally awesome! Good luck to you and your son!
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Old 01-28-2007, 07:26 PM
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Default RE: Elk Rut

Granby took the words right out of my mouth. In Wyoming the peak of the rut is around the 3rd week of September.
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Old 01-28-2007, 07:27 PM
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Default RE: Elk Rut

They got to it before I did.

I'd go from about the middle of September on. I live right on the Washington/Idaho border and we usually see the most rut activity around the middle to end of September.
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Old 01-28-2007, 09:08 PM
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Default RE: Elk Rut

I too agree with all of the above. One thing to remember, once the elk are in full rut it becomes harder to call in the big boys, meaning the herd bulls. They don't mind calling their head off at a distance but most of the time theyrealy don't want to fight and risk loosing theirherd either. During the peak of the rut, thebigger bullsin my experiencewhen pressured by (us) human elk. Instead coming in to fightthey will turn and run 9 times out of 10. So I use bull calls sparingly during this time of the season (peak of the rut), its great to usebull calls to locate all the other bulls around,but to actualy call thebulls up close, its better left to the cow call IMO. Of course each situation is different and needs to be judged and acted uponthen and there depending how the elk are acting. So I try to use a mix of a few bull calls along with many different cow calls. Even then nothing is 100% sure fire for bringing in the big bullsduring the peak of the rut. This is because they already have most if not all of the cows they can handle.Even withusingcow calls, they will not be sowilling to leave their cows, unattended for very long if at all like they were two weeks earlier. During the peaka lotof their cows areon the verge of going into estrus or they are comming out of it. Either way a bull doesn't want to risk loosing his own cows inattempttoadd one or two more to his herd. That is why I like sneeking in 100 yards and closerto the herd. I think having the shooterbeing60-80yards away from the herd is about perfect IMO. The caller on the other hand is best being 100-150 yards away or more from the shooter. When calling, if time allows I like to sneak inwith the shooter and then sneak back out behind him.Its not easy and sometimejust can't be done,but if you can then try it.The reason I like doingit,is then I know what the shooter is seeing. If I know that there is deep dark timber with no shooting lanes to the right of the shooter but to the left has several openings with many shooting lanes. Then I sure as heck don't want to pull the bull to the right but instead draw him in to the left. Of course it does't always go as planned but hey thats hunting. Well I could go on and on, but I say this that my favorite time to hunt is the pre rut, the first 10 days or so of the season. During that time the bulls don't call near as much but they are quicker to come in my experience. Some times they come in silent, other times they do call, but like others have said they don't call much compared to the peak. But that being said I have had the best resultscalling inbigger bulls early on. Hope this helps and if you have any more questions ask away.
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Old 01-28-2007, 10:30 PM
  #6  
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Default RE: Elk Rut

If you are going into uncharted waters, it will be better to wait until the 3rd week of september. When you get to know an area, you can't beat the first 4-5 days as the rut is already going on with the oldest cows coming in the 3rd week of august. Hunt hard all day, they can appear at any time of the day!!!!
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Old 01-29-2007, 07:23 AM
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RMA
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Default RE: Elk Rut

Instructor said it ALL...hit the nail on the head
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Old 01-29-2007, 06:02 PM
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Spike
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Default RE: Elk Rut

Thanks for the replies. What are some of the calls I should get. A friend of mine from Yakima Wash. said I should get a Hootchie Mama and a Hyper Lip Single. Any suggestions would be appreciated. Does Idaho have any restrictions on broadheads or poundage. Thanks again for the replies.....PaLuke
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Old 01-29-2007, 06:57 PM
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Default RE: Elk Rut

Idaho has some restriction for bow's; 60% let off, 40/50 pound pull? (can't remember exactly), and there is a arrow/broadhead grain minimum that you must follow.

As far as calls, Get yourself a good bugle and start practicing, hootchie momma is always a favorite, and a any mouth blown call is always good to have.

For the rut i think from about September 14-15 to the end of the month is always HOT.

I hunt up in the Panhandle so i can't give you any advice on where to go. But good luck!
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Old 01-29-2007, 08:09 PM
  #10  
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Default RE: Elk Rut

ID Hunter, the rules have just been relaxed and idaho is now at 85% with a min. grain weight of 300 grains. Although for elk I would not even think of going that light, but that would be a thread all its own.

Mechanicals are still not legal and they have to have at least a 90 degree angle, meaning not barbed.
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