NM archery elk


Oct 26, 2010
Thought I'd post up a few pics from my elk hunt this year. Ended up drawing a good tag for the Gila here in NM. Spent quite a few weekends over the summer looking around the area, hanging trail cams and such. First decent tag I've ever drawn in the state I was living in at the time so the scouting gave it an additional dimension I could enjoy.

It was a first season hunt and it would be my 3rd time trying to tag an elk with the bow. First 2 times were in WY and both should have ended in success but we all know how that can go.

Ended up chasing a lot of bugles, pretty much every day. The problem seemed to be hearing the elk versus actually seeing the elk as once you got after them the cover was quite thick. Not necessarily as thick in the cedars but that seemed to be more like a transition area that was like a maze. Should've been done a couple days earlier than I was but screwed up one stalk and one setup in there, fun times though. Saw some of the biggest rubs I've ever seen as well. Many days were spent chasing bugles and never actually laying eyes on the animals. Multiple mornings the elk would be heading to bed as soon as they started to bugle, right at the start of shooting light. Tried intercepting them, of course they never seemed to want to go where I was :(

The 10th morning was when it finally came together. Most of the outings prior to that were spent trying to climb up the mountains after them with some close calls but less than stellar results. That morning I ended up heading down a ridge where I knew I'd be above them and hopefully be able to find one on my side. Ended up getting one to respond to a few different cow calls. After awhile he seemed to go silent so I decided to sneak over the rise and see what I could see. As soon as I popped over the ridge I saw an elk looking directly at me and thought to myself "that's pretty sweet, way to get busted!"
It was early morning in the timber and I wasn't sure if it was the bull or a cow hanging around. After a minute or so he ended up bugling and I could tell he was a decent bull so I thought if he gave me a shot I would try to take it. He probably ended up staring me down for close to 5 minutes before he started to lose interest as I hadn't called for awhile. He started to make a left turn at which point I drew back and figured him for about 50 yds. As soon as I drew he must've caught my movement as he turned to look but the arrow was already on the way. As soon as he took off I ranged the tree that was directly behind him at 47 yds. At the shot he took off down the hill but probably only made it about 100 yrs before he piled up.

All told it was a good trip and I can't wait to do it again.
(pardon any sideways pics, don't really have any good hero shots as it was solo).


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Oct 26, 2010
Elk pics


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Well-known member
Feb 3, 2011
Lubbock, Texas
Beautiful bull. Great 3rds on him!

Congratulations on getting it done with a bow. Persistence paid off!