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Author Topic: The bull that wouldn't fight  (Read 66 times)

Online SteelheadTed

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The bull that wouldn't fight
« on: Today at 01:08:23 PM »
My season was a success despite not shooting a bull.  I hunted for 7 days, 4 with my oldest daughter and it was great getting out there with her.  This was our first year archery hunting (I've rifle hunted 4 seasons up this one).  My goal was to have a chance at a bull and we got one. 

After a discouraging 2.5 days of calling elk and not getting responses across 10-15 square miles we finally got a response on the third day (and not coincidentally it was after we found some really good sign).  We couldn't close the gap the first day but found them again the next day.  A bull with some cows.  The bull responded to every call with a chuckle.  My bugle is good but my chuckle needs work so I never responded with a chuckle, just bugles and cow calls.  We realized as we approached that the herd was moving away from us, not fast, like they winded us, but moving away.  We watched our wind close.

We had an opportunity to cut them off as they came down perpendicular to a finger ridge.  We just missed them on the cutoff and they were on their way up the other side of an adjacent ridge by the time we got there.  Again, not moving fast, but moving.  I bugled and got the bull to stop and for the first time he full bugled back.  I couldn't see him well due to brush but he was a good sized bull but not a giant.  I wasn't able to count points, too many branches and he was still 100 yards off.  He kept moving over the ridge, chuckling, but not stopping.  That was the last we saw of him.  We weren't able to relocate them again, I think they moved onto some private timber land

We learned a ton and I think for elk, I am now an archery guy.  Hearing them bugle back and getting close is an experience that can't be matched outside of the rut.

So, we are struggling to figure out what else we could have done.  Is it as simple as chuckling back?  Might he have turned and fought?  My bugles are high pitched, full-throated affairs.  Could it be he thought I was the bigger bull and didn't want to fight?


I know I've lost it, let me know if you come across it

Offline WSU

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Re: The bull that wouldn't fight
« Reply #1 on: Today at 01:12:00 PM »
It sounds like you need to get in a lot closer before you bugle.  Inside 100 yards or even less.


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