Caribou Gear Tarp

Calling Elk in early season

Rooster52

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Feb 18, 2014
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Who has had success calling elk in early September? I plan on hunting the 1st thru the 12th this year. Never hunted elk that early in the season ,just wonder how the elk will respond to calls.
I think I will stay with cow and calf calls and leave the bugle at home.

I think of calling elk like calling turkeys. If you can get between where they are at and where they want to be ,they are a lot easier to call in.
 

Duck-Slayer

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Oct 3, 2010
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great state of Idaho....
I wouldn't leave the bugle..... Mature bulls are asserting there dominence and that is when the bugle works the best IMO, but you need too know your elk that your hunting also, soft subtle bugles is the key, experiment and see what the elk want..... Good luck,
Matt
 

Gunner46

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I've never had much luck, no matter where they wanted to be. Tried the broadcasting call " YO ! Elk !"

The romance call " Ohhhhhhh Elkieee"

The challenge call " You feelin' Elkie? Here I am. Jump"

The lost call "Here Elkie, Elkie, Elkie..."

None of them works. Let me know if you find one any better.
 

Mudranger1

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If anything leave the cow calls at home. Personally I've had much more success with the bugle that early in the season. But I'll be out at the same time. I'll let you know ;)
 

Poor packer

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Nov 22, 2013
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I like to call late at night. Bulls seem to respond to bugles better in the dark. Let's you know the right direction to go in the morning.
 

Steelhead

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Dec 28, 2009
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If anything leave the cow calls at home. Personally I've had much more success with the bugle that early in the season. But I'll be out at the same time. I'll let you know ;)
Opposite for me: If anything leave the BUGLE at home. Personally I've had much more success with COW CALLS that early in the season.
Honestly take both.
 

Steelhead

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I believe there's a thought that it's easier to call in a big bull early in the season before they gather a buncha cows and don't care about your single cow calls. Also I believe there's a theory that the easiest time to kill a bull is when he first gets outta his bed in the the afternoon, early season=hot=bulls will be bedded on a pretty regular schedule?
FYI, I cold called the first week of September on a hunt, it was hot, and almost every evening I had a bull come in during the last 30 minutes or so of light. Like they'd been listening to me for an hour and then got up and ran straight at me at last light.
 

POk3s

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Wyoming
I like to call late at night. Bulls seem to respond to bugles better in the dark. Let's you know the right direction to go in the morning.

This!

I love the second week of september. The bulls (in my area at least) seem to get fired up at some point during this second week. Lots of times it's raghorns with the cows but the herd bulls are making sure those raghorns know they are there. I have had great success calling in elk with cold calling setups but it's a crapshoot on where they're going to come from. Hard to get a shot off as I seem to always be positioned wrong.

Late at night or early in the morning when there is absolutely no hint of sunshine I will bugle. At least then I know when the sun does rise I'll be in the right spot, even if the bulls aren't talking.
 

OR_Hunter

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Dec 24, 2014
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I agree with Steelhead. The majority of the bulls won't be herded up that early in the season making them easier to kill. Later on in the season it is a lot harder to pull a herd bull away from his cows. I'd bring both the cow calls and bugle. If you aren't hearing any bugles, but know there's a bull in the area try and cow call him in. If you find one that's fired up, use the bugle.
 
Yeti

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