Think I could kill one here?

windymtnman

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I've known about this pond for many years, and have seen Elk drinking here from the rim of the alpine bowl overlooking it. It's in an alpine basin, just below a mountain summit. The area is infested with Colorado's fast growing beetle killed timber. Out for a scouting ride yesterday, I thought I'd revisit it, having not been there for many years.
It had a fair amount of Elk sign, however it's not the only place in the area game can drink. I decided to build a blind in the talus rock that comes right down to the water's edge. I'm confident an Elk would never see me in the blind, however a big concern is that in thisalpine bowl, there may well be a lot of swirling air currents?
If an Elk came to drink, it would be a max of a 30 yd. wide open shot, and probably more like 20 to 25 yds. It's a 2 mile hike from the road. Thinking of putting a spike horse camp on the rim above it, as there's water and great grass for the horses, and dropping down there in the dark and sit there all day. Probably need a good book to bring along too! Ha!
First pic with my horse sampling the bill of fare, shows the pond. I thought about building a hide in the trees, (and still may) however it seems like those are on the travel lanes and Elk might surprise me before I them? The 2nd pic shows my blind in the center of the pic. The talus rock slope comes right down to water's edge. I thought it was the best choice to keep an Elk from walking up too close on me, yet I'd have a chip shot at them.
I'm not going to sit here for days on end, but may give it a go a few times.
 

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sierrahunter

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Feb 14, 2015
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I hunt areas with similar topology, and often have problems with swirling wind. It really can ruin an otherwise good location. I'd test out the area during different times of day to see if there are reliable wind patterns. If not, I would use a popup blind in the trees to keep your scent contained.
 

Jwill

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I'll preface this by saying I don't have much experience building blinds for elk, but Chuck Adams had some good thoughts on this in one of the latest Bugle magazines. I would imagine elk at that pond would be on high alert, an ambush 50-100yds back into the timber may be better?
 

hank4elk

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Hunt surrounding area and they will come by. 1/2 + mi away,otherwise you'll blow them.
Those spots the wind is biggest problem.
 

esracerx

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Aug 13, 2015
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I have no doubt the animals go there. Could you get one there? Absolutely. I shot a bull out of a blind I built a few hours prior. The issue I see is wind. That's always the big one. I have my suspicions that this isn't the only water around. I don't see many animals wander into the wide open like that and drink out of a pond. I see more drinking out of mud puddles in in the forest. I'd throw a trail cam up. I'd be willing to bet they're coming to that at night.
 

windymtnman

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Sierrahunter: Don't own a pop up blind, wouldn't carry it 2 miles in anyway, and at this point I'm pretty sure Elk would notice something different.
I'm not wanting to build a blind in the trees here, because I think my scent would carry even worse, AND if you scouted this area, there's about a 60% chance they will approach this from the North, and would be popping over a knoll about 20 yards from where I'd be set up. Coming into view at that range, you stand a good chance at being pinned down, and can't move. Plus the prevailing air currents would be blowing that way, if not swirling.
I intentionally thought of my blind location, as I know I won't be spotted, and I have the best chance at beating the air currents. I'll spray down with copious amts. of scent killer and the rocks, may hold some scent from blowing around too. (?)
As for the comment of Elk being on high alert when drinking, perhaps so, however I've watched a whole lot of hunting videos where they drink, frolic in the water, and nip the succulent grass around it. Many game animals that are wary of the waterholes have had experience watching their buddy get shot, etc..
If the wind proves to be a huge problem, I'll just move on. Heck, this is but one spot I'll probably hunt. With 2 horses and a Mule, "have stock, will travel".
 

windymtnman

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Outdooraddict

As for catching my horse, I rarely tie him up when I get off him on my riding. Sometimes I take a short walk about, and can leave him for 10 minutes or more without being tied. He just grazes or takes a rest. Very often, I walk with him on mountain trails, and tie his reins to the breast collar. He just follows me like a dog. (Can't do that if there's good grass where you're at though, or he'll stop for a snack.
He's not a perfect horse, but he's proven his value and reliability to me. He doesn't spook, and if he smells something like a Bear, he just stops and sorts things out. I've fallen leading him down steep mountain slopes off trail and he's always avoided stepping on me.
I appreciate everything about him and wouldn't take triple the $3500 I paid for him. I'm blessed with being able to ride the mountains about any day I want too, as we live in them. When I saddle him up, I often tell him there will be a day when I'm too old to go, and he'll just lounge about the pasture, bored to death! hahahaha.
 

esracerx

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I know a lot of people that arent nearly as reliable or trustworthy. A few years ago we were in camp. One of the guys I was with says to us, "look, it's the Marlboro man." At this point he lost me, but apparently this sheep herder with hundreds of sheep was the Marlboro mans doppelganger. He was riding his horse and had a young foal with him he was training. This little guy would follow him around like a puppy. It would sniff you and beg for whatever you were eating. He'd hollar at it and would shy away. The name of the foal, "Dog".
 
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