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Old May 16, 2008, 12:12 AM   #1
djonathang
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What would you do if you came across a herd of Elk cows?

Hello All,

I'm interested in how you'd play this one out. You're interested in hunting bull Elk. It is October, and the rut is over. You come across a small herd of Elk cows. There are no bulls in sight. How long do you remain with the cows before you move on if no bull has appeared?

Thanks.

DG
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Old May 16, 2008, 12:21 AM   #2
Ifishsum
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Pretty quickly. If there's a bull in there, you're likely to see him. I see small herds of cows without bulls often after the rut.
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Old May 16, 2008, 12:55 AM   #3
kametc
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The cows and big mature bulls segregate pretty quickly after the rut. The spikes and really old bulls may stay with the herd. The workin bulls will be bunched together so they can rest up, eat up, and heal up.
Be hard to pass on, those cows are easier to gut and drag and they sure are better eatin.

Ken
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Old May 16, 2008, 01:02 AM   #4
Wyldman
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Quote:
The cows and big mature bulls segregate pretty quickly after the rut. The spikes and really old bulls may stay with the herd. The workin bulls will be bunched together so they can rest up, eat up, and heal up.
Be hard to pass on, those cows are easier to gut and drag and they sure are better eatin.

Ken
AMEN! The last bull I ate off of was a bit tough and very gamey tasting. The cows are definitely better eating.
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Old May 16, 2008, 01:14 AM   #5
kametc
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A cow in your sights is worth 10 other elk in the timber at the top of the ridge.

Ken
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Old May 16, 2008, 06:20 AM   #6
djonathang
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That's all very interesting. A friend went Elk hunting in Oregon last year. He has a number of excellent stories from the same trip of coming across cows in herds at close range: 50 to 75 yards. The story goes that he waited and moved on. In reading your posts, I guess the issue was the size and horns, because as a food hunter, the idea of delicious versus tough and gamey is pretty persuasive.*

* I must admit that going to The Hunt section of this site, and seeing the pics, the ones with the horns definitely ceate a bigger impression. Your comments make me wonder what happens after the picture is taken.

DG
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Old May 16, 2008, 08:40 AM   #7
Jack O'Conner
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A big bull is impressive but a young cow is the best dinner plate trophy.

A hunter can only have so many big sets of antlers anyways. They take up much wall space.

Jack
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Old May 16, 2008, 09:50 AM   #8
HOGGHEAD
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Meat

I guess I have been very lucky. I know that I truly enjoy Elk Steak. I have only had Elk steak from about 50 different Elk. Most meat was from bulls. But several steaks were from cows. I never have ran across tough or gamey tasting elk meat. But then we take great care in meat preparation. I guess I have just been lucky. Tom.
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Old May 16, 2008, 04:03 PM   #9
Ifishsum
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But then we take great care in meat preparation.
IMHO that makes all the difference in the world. I still think a young cow is the best table fare, but I once I get an animal down, all of my resources for the next few hours are devoted to taking the best possible care of the meat - dressing immediately and skinning as soon as humanly possible, and getting it cooled properly. I've never been disappointed with my own game meat, but I've had some pretty rangy stuff from other people.
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Old May 16, 2008, 04:48 PM   #10
bclark1
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If someone's out of wall space, I'd throw in a few bucks for gas if you want to drag me along to shoot any nice bulls you encounter during a hunt
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Old May 16, 2008, 06:17 PM   #11
crowbeaner
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I've tried to eat antlers before on a dare (back in my wild and woolly youth; who-hit-john was involved) and I can assure all readers that cow elk meat is by far the greatest table fare with the exception of a fat cornfed doe from my mum's place. If I had a tag for one, the biggest cow would be on the ground and cut stem to stern as fast as I could roll her over. I LOVE venison and all wild game meat, and horns cost too much to mount and transport. I don't have room on the wall for a 6x6 bull anyway; it's filled with picture frames, knickknacks etc. Photos will suffice, and a freezer overfull with game will allow me to buy another freezer for $150 at wallyworld. A1; yeah, it's that important.
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