First time elk, go archery or rife?

SuperDUECE22

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Aug 20, 2019
Messages
388
either one will be a great experience just soak it all in. Also like to address the "overcrowding" that everybody seems to talk about it. Last year we hunted a general OTC 2nd season rifle unit and our whole group harvested branch antlered bulls & during the entire season we saw 3 other hunters out in the field. Yes, there were camps at the trailhead, side by sides on the roads & we ran into a few guys on the trail, but we didn't experience anything close to what I consider overcrowding. If you're coming from the Midwest whitetail woods, you actually know what a pumpkin patch looks like so don't get deterred by all these guys saying how crowded it is because it's not as bad as they make it sound.
 

jjohnsonElknewbie

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Mar 16, 2021
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Western Iowa
If you're coming from the Midwest whitetail woods, you actually know what a pumpkin patch looks like so don't get deterred by all these guys saying how crowded it is because it's not as bad as they make it sound.
I literally laughed out loud on that one, and I am very familiar with the "orange brigade". Glad you had a good hunt in CO.
 

Newtosavage

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Sep 20, 2018
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In someone's favorite spot
either one will be a great experience just soak it all in. Also like to address the "overcrowding" that everybody seems to talk about it. Last year we hunted a general OTC 2nd season rifle unit and our whole group harvested branch antlered bulls & during the entire season we saw 3 other hunters out in the field. Yes, there were camps at the trailhead, side by sides on the roads & we ran into a few guys on the trail, but we didn't experience anything close to what I consider overcrowding. If you're coming from the Midwest whitetail woods, you actually know what a pumpkin patch looks like so don't get deterred by all these guys saying how crowded it is because it's not as bad as they make it sound.
In rifle, I agree with this. Get 1/2 mile off the roads and you're golden.

That has not been my experience in CO for archery or ML seasons however.

Also remember that the general public is ALL OVER the mountains until mid-September anyway, especiall up until Labor Day weekend. So if you go early in the archery season, you'll have all those folks to contend with as well. I honestly was not prepared for how many people I saw above 10k feet the first two weeks of September. Since then, I've gone later and later. this year I went 3rd rifle. Last year I learned that if it gets real cold and snows a lot, the locals all go home. LOL
 

ColoradoV

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Nov 10, 2013
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374
With the “perfect” archery elk dates I would say to hunt archery..

Something to think about is that you have to go back to about 2010 for the FIRST rifle season start date was this late. A week later basically ends most bugling as the bulls are moving from the herd. 2nd-4th are much later as well and most places unless you hunt private land these super late dates do not help w elk.

So take advantage for the opportunity to hunt of the best dates and hunt archery. Tons of otc archery opportunities where you can hunt and build a points.

Good luck 👍!
 

tntrker

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Aug 7, 2018
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576
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Upstate SC
I've always dreamed of an archery elk hunt but went 1st with a rifle, just to have a better chance of bringing home some meat and "justify" a guided hunt since I live in SC. Headed out to MT in Sept for an archery elk..Good Luck!!
 

BigTimber56

Newbie
Joined
Dec 18, 2021
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4
Location
Washington
I'm in a similar situation and will give an answer I haven't heard yet. I'm thinking of going muzzleloader season, which is during archery in Co. I figure a gun with a bit more range than a bow during the rut may give me a bit of a odds boost.
Please, for the love of all that is holy, practice disciplined target identification.
 

BigTimber56

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Joined
Dec 18, 2021
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Washington
No, I was speaking to the accident that happened this year in Colorado in which an a muzzy hunter shot and killed a bowhunter. That in turn lead to death and, imo, knee jerk proposals. Archery hunters to wear orange, change both archery and muzzy seasons (which may be the answer, but they were going to shorten both), and add additional fuel for anti's. Hunting elk for the first time can get people all riled up especially if they have never seen a bull up close in the rut. It is exciting. It bears mentioning for everyone to be cognizant of their target before they shoot and the ramifications that can happen if they don't.
 

hunterdanman

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Jan 23, 2022
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Location
South Missouri
Good reminders. Everyone thinks it won't happen to me but every year there is a story or two where you wonder how that could ever happen. Stay safe out there!
 

NCtrapper19

Junior Member
Joined
Nov 17, 2020
Messages
10
I would go archery, personally I love archery hunting and seem to enjoy it more than rifle hunting. I think you can learn a lot more about elk hunting by doing an archery hunt rather than rifle.
 
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Dgk30

Newbie
Joined
Jan 12, 2022
Messages
9
I would go archery, personally I love archery hunting and seem to enjoy it more than rifle hunting. I think you can learn a lot more about elk hunting by doing an archery hunt rather than rifle.
Thanks I think we are going to do archery
 
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