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How to Bowhunt Elk When it’s hot and dry



Driving in dry and hot weather can be difficult. (Photo by Shutterstock / Cody Newman)

Hunting in dry and hot weather can be tough. I had to deal with those conditions during 20 years of hunting with the bow in the Gila region of New Mexico to be sure; the land of maize, every step an auditory assault. Idaho normally offers a calmer foot, even if a thick brush that clutches and excursions can transform this long-term inhabitant of a southwestern habitat open from time to time in a bad mood.

In New Mexico, the dry years were weird seasons: limited tanks, scattered tanks and drinkers of wild animals that made water for the thirsty, deadly effective moose. Maybe it's too much. Hunting water became so popular – even during the rainy years – the stories of fights clashing over the possession of certain sites became common.

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Northern Idaho, even during the driest seasons, gives up perhaps too many irrigation options. Surely the water that sits or the flakes can reap great rewards, but even during a difficult year, there is plenty of water to go around. It becomes a successful proposal, unlike the almost certainty of a southwestern water hole during the dry climate.

When the Idaho woods transform this crunchy-noisy, it really leaves only one possibility: to call. You will still be asked to "bull" the bugling bulls to stay in the game, use all the stalking skills at your disposal, but in the end call skill creates the shot.

This entails the use of the quietest possible and the extraction of slippers from stalking on clumsy boots to isolate the steps through the gravel and twigs.

Calling is not exactly a new venture here in Idaho. The morning I climbed the herd, I tore my bull and two others called these elks. I knew it because, well, they looked like hunters calling for calls and not moose. I imagine I look more like an elk than a hunter, as after observing a mixed herd of loquacious elk a couple of hours, closing at less than 70 meters, one of those bulls that turned to investigate my mixed stables of calves and calves and squeak the trills.

I shot him at 7 meters in an extra-narrow cover. It was one of the finest elk hunts in my career, even though it was my youngest bull to date – a large body 4×4 with four or five seasons behind it (judging from tooth wear) ). Idaho does not give up the best genetics of the West, but the tags are easy to protect and elk hunters every season for the average elk it is certainly more fun than hunting with the bow every fifth or tenth year for the best elks that go around.

Not to be missed: 10 moose hunting tips of the RMEF

Editor's Note: This was originally published on September 29, 2012.

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