Training for an AZ elk hunt

SirRomey

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Jan 12, 2020
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Hi everyone, first time posting. I have an elk hunt in late November I’m currently trying to train for. I’ve been running with a weighted vest. Just trying to get some more tips on what everyone else does to prepare for a hunt. Thank you in advance.


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MuleyFever

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Nov 7, 2012
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S. UTAH
My advise would be dont run with a weighted vest. Maybe you already looked into it though. If you have not I would read up on the pros and cons. You are putting a lot more stress on your body than you probably need to. Hikes with a weighted pack would probably be better.
 

fmyth

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Mar 14, 2019
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238
Location
Arizona
Your question is a little vague so you are going to get a lot of different advice/opinions.

Are you packing in 10 miles and spiking out or hunting from a base camp and walking in a few miles each day?. Do you have an atv/utv that you will be using to get to your spot and retrieve your elk? In my opinion It makes a big difference in how you prepare/train.

I hunt from the truck/camp so am not preparing for a back country hunt. I drive my ATV from my camp on Forrest roads, park it and hike in a few miles each morning and then again each evening. I walk an average around 5 miles a day while hunting. I am a 52 year old former body builder and hold a chair down for a living. I've had 2 knee surgeries and 1 shoulder surgery. As soon as this Corona Virus blows over I'm getting my left knee scoped again to repair a torn meniscus. I don't have too many miles/pounds left in my joints so I no longer train like an animal. My elk training for AZ, CO & WY is as follows:

Walk 1 mile in the foothills behind my house every morning and work out for 30 min with resistance bands and dumbells mon wed friday. When I'm 2 months out from my archery season its 115 degrees here at home so I have to use the treadmill and go north on weekends as much as possible. 2 months I start wearing my pack/35lbs of kitty litter. Start out at a mile every day for first couple weeks then 2 miles etc til I can do 5 miles. I try to do a 5-10 mile hike w loaded pack every other weekend.

I do just fine in the mountains of WY/CO/AZ come archery season. Last year I hunted/camped hiked over 42 days in the Medicine Bow Forest and logged over 140 miles on the gps. I did have to pack one elk out, the other fell and slid down the mountain to the ATV trail. My hunting partner is 72, has never seen the inside of a gym, is in remission (rare blood cancer) has rheumatoid arthritis and does nothing other than tend to his 50 bee hives prior to hunting season. He has no problem hiking, hunting, packing out. He killed a nice 6x6 bull and a nice mule deer buck this last season and we packed them out together.

This year I drew a rifle tag in AZ 6a for late nov early dec bull elk and a cow rifle tag for mid november on the San Carlos Res. In 6a I can legally drive my utv to my kill and retrieve it. No utvs allowed in the San Carlos so I'll be hiking in and packing out. Still waiting for the CO and WY draw to see if I'll be archery hunting in Sept.

I also spend a considerable amount of time pre season studying elk hunting and practicing my calling (Elk Nut and Elk 101) I "scout" prior to the season using google earth for areas I want to glass from or focus on. I'll also visit my unit several times prior to the season and drive all the roads and hike to potential glassing/hunting locations and mark them on Onx.

In summary, how you train for your hunt depends on your current physical condition, style of hunting and the terrain where you plan to hunt. I plan to hunt elk every year til I'm 80. Maybe longer if one of my grandkids will drive me out high spot and prop me up against a tree.
 
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SirRomey

SirRomey

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Joined
Jan 12, 2020
Messages
24
My advise would be dont run with a weighted vest. Maybe you already looked into it though. If you have not I would read up on the pros and cons. You are putting a lot more stress on your body than you probably need to. Hikes with a weighted pack would probably be better.
I hadn’t looked that up but I appreciate the advice. Thank you.


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SirRomey

SirRomey

Junior Member
Joined
Jan 12, 2020
Messages
24
Your question is a little vague so you are going to get a lot of different advice/opinions.

Are you packing in 10 miles and spiking out or hunting from a base camp and walking in a few miles each day?. In my opinion It makes a big difference in how you prepare/train.

I hunt from the truck/camp so am not preparing for a back country hunt. I drive my ATV from my camp on Forrest roads, park it and hike in a few miles each morning and then again each evening. I walk an average around 5 miles a day while hunting. I am a 52 year old former body builder and hold a chair down for a living. I've had 2 knee surgeries and 1 shoulder surgery. As soon as this Corona Virus blows over I'm getting my left knee scoped again to repair a torn meniscus. I don't have too many miles/pounds left in my joints so I no longer train like an animal. My elk training for AZ, CO & WY is as follows:

Walk 1 mile in the foothills behind my house every morning and work out for 30 min with resistance bands and dumbells mon wed friday. When I'm 2 months out from my hunt I start hiking with my pack/35lbs of kitty litter. Start out at a mile every day for first couple weeks then 2 miles and try to do a 5 mile hike w loaded pack every Sunday. I do just fine in the mountains of WY/CO/AZ come archery season. Last year I hunted/camped hiked over 42 days in the Medicine Bow Forest and logged over 140 miles on the gps. I did have to pack one elk out, the other fell and slid down the mountain to the ATV trail. My hunting partner is 72, has never seen the inside of a gym, is in remission (rare blood cancer) has rheumatoid arthritis and does nothing other than tend to his 50 bee hives prior to hunting season. He has no problem hiking, hunting, packing out. He killed a nice 6x6 bull and a nice mule deer buck this last season and we packed them out together.

I do spend time each season studying elk hunting and practicing my calling (Elk Nut and Elk 101) I "scout" prior to the season using google earth for areas I want to glass from or focus on.

In summary, how you train for your hunt depends on your current physical condition, style of hunting and the terrain where you plan to hunt. I plan to hunt elk every year til I'm 80. Maybe longer if one of my grandkids will drive me out high spot and prop me up against a tree.
I’m taking my up a trailer but plan on walking a few miles a day. Lots of info here and I appreciate it! I’m in fairly good shape but plan on taking it up a notch. My wife also drew a tag so she’s training for this too. She’s been working out 6 days a week for years so she’s got a leg up on me lol. Thank you!


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fmyth

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Mar 14, 2019
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238
Location
Arizona
Forgot to ask you what unit? AZ has a variety of terrain. In many units its almost impossible to get more than a mile from a forest road.
 

fmyth

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Joined
Mar 14, 2019
Messages
238
Location
Arizona
I’m taking my up a trailer but plan on walking a few miles a day. Lots of info here and I appreciate it! I’m in fairly good shape but plan on taking it up a notch. My wife also drew a tag so she’s training for this too. She’s been working out 6 days a week for years so she’s got a leg up on me lol. Thank you!


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Congrats on your tags! Feel free to PM me if you have questions about preparing for your AZ hunt.
 
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SirRomey

SirRomey

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Forgot to ask you what unit? AZ has a variety of terrain. In many units its almost impossible to get more than a mile from a forest road.
Unit 27. I’m so amped! Can’t wait!


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SirRomey

SirRomey

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Congrats on your tags! Feel free to PM me if you have questions about preparing for your AZ hunt.
Trying to figure out how to PM on Tapatalk.


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SirRomey

SirRomey

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Trying to figure out how to PM on Tapatalk.


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Found it but apparently I don’t have enough posts to PM you. That’s odd.


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fmyth

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Mar 14, 2019
Messages
238
Location
Arizona
Unit 27. I’m so amped! Can’t wait!


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That's a great unit! I camp up at Big Lake a couple times each year and always see lots of elk. I've always wanted to hunt 27 but my friends that I hunt with in AZ are Flagstaff area hunters. I have a friend that shot a big bull in 27 last season in Dec. It was a tough hunt with all the snow. He shot it down in a deep canyon and ended up hiring someone to pack it out with mules. Might want to invest in tire chains, recovery boards etc. I'd also get the name/phone number for a packer and tow company in case the weather is nasty.
 
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SirRomey

SirRomey

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Messages
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That's a great unit! I camp up at Big Lake a couple times each year and always see lots of elk. I've always wanted to hunt 27 but my friends that I hunt with in AZ are Flagstaff area hunters. I have a friend that shot a big bull in 27 last season in Dec. It was a tough hunt with all the snow. He shot it down in a deep canyon and ended up hiring someone to pack it out with mules. Might want to invest in tire chains, recovery boards etc. I'd also get the name/phone number for a packer and tow company in case the weather is nasty.
That’s what I’ve heard about last years snow. I’ve been near big lake and unit 1 lots, just never ventured that Far East. Hopefully going to make it up a few times before our hunt. I have another buddy that drew a unit 10 antelope tag so I’m hoping to head up there in September to help out.


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OFFHNTN

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Apr 10, 2015
Messages
457
Welcome to the forum and congrats on the tag! I have 17 points in AZ so one of these years I plan to apply and hopefully draw.
As stated, do not run with a weighted vest. I have a weighted vest and use it on the step mill/stairclimber, and walking on the incline treadmill. There are a lot of things you can do, and the hunt is still several months away, so depending on your fitness level, don't overdue it now. The best advice I have is a 2-3 months before your hunt, put your backpack and boots on, put some weights in it and walk up and down any hills or mountains you can find. Each week, or every other week, add more weight and increase the time/distance you walk.
 
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SirRomey

SirRomey

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Jan 12, 2020
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Welcome to the forum and congrats on the tag! I have 17 points in AZ so one of these years I plan to apply and hopefully draw.
As stated, do not run with a weighted vest. I have a weighted vest and use it on the step mill/stairclimber, and walking on the incline treadmill. There are a lot of things you can do, and the hunt is still several months away, so depending on your fitness level, don't overdue it now. The best advice I have is a 2-3 months before your hunt, put your backpack and boots on, put some weights in it and walk up and down any hills or mountains you can find. Each week, or every other week, add more weight and increase the time/distance you walk.
Thanks for the welcome! Yeah, I’ve since stop running with the vest. I’m just running after work to get my lungs ready now. I’m a major procrastinator so I’m starting now to give myself a better chance at getting in shape. Thank you for the advice!


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Scotron

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Jan 24, 2020
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Location
SE Arizona
I live and hunt in unit 27 and it is a rough unit!! You're doing well to get into shape to help you enjoy the hunt and pull that big bull out of one of those nasty canyons. My workout routine to stay fit for our backpack hunts are the crossfit workouts. I know this type of workout isn't for everyone but I do very well on the hunts doing these workouts.
 
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SirRomey

SirRomey

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I live and hunt in unit 27 and it is a rough unit!! You're doing well to get into shape to help you enjoy the hunt and pull that big bull out of one of those nasty canyons. My workout routine to stay fit for our backpack hunts are the crossfit workouts. I know this type of workout isn't for everyone but I do very well on the hunts doing these workouts.
Thank you! My wife was a certified CrossFit instructor and have done workouts with her. I’ll keep up with that. I appreciate your input.


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Nhawkinsf36

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Sep 28, 2017
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Georgia
I’m from Georgia and I put on my pack with weight in it and went to the local football stadium. I would throw that in with some cardio and it seems to work for me.
 
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SirRomey

SirRomey

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Jan 12, 2020
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I’m from Georgia and I put on my pack with weight in it and went to the local football stadium. I would throw that in with some cardio and it seems to work for me.
Thank you for your input. Appreciate it!


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