Decoy Tips and Secrets for Elk Hunting
The Elk I and Elk III are great decoys for all elk hunting purposes. If hunting by yourself, set the decoy to the side and behind you once you have and idea of where the bull is coming from. Try to setup next to trees to conceal your movement when you draw. Remember to keep the wind in your favor. If you have a partner to call for you, he can setup near the decoy and try to lure the bull by you for a shot. These decoys can also be used at water holes if using a tree stand or ground blind.
The Elk II decoy is great to use in timber or brushy areas. Set decoy next to a tree as if the cow is feeding away from the bull you hope to call in. Many times when a bull bugles and this cow doesn't lift her head to acknowledge his presence, it causes him to come right on over to round her up for her herd.
"I like running and gunning until I hear a bugle," says Jerry McPherson of his bowhunting style.
He covers a lot of ground, bugling and cow calling in hopes of hearing a bugle in response. Once he hears a bugle, he moves in close and sets up his decoy. He positions himself off to the side between where he thinks the bull will come in and where the decoy is located. He suggests moving out 20 to 30 yards ahead of the decoy, and downwind of the incoming prey, in hopes that the bull will walk past.
By setting up off to the side, McPherson can let the elk walk past him before he has to draw.
"They won't even see you," he said. "They're zeroed in on the cow decoy.
"But you've got to wait for them to get past you," he added. "Otherwise, they'll see any movement you do."
"Flashing" is a new style McPherson has developed for luring in wary bulls, one he tested in the Missouri Breaks.
The first time he pulled in a big bull by flashing, McPherson was set up on a ridge just before sunup. There was a large bull across the coulee that McPherson had bugled to and then cow called. When the bull showed interest, McPherson raised his rump decoy, which shows the backside of a cow elk, and then slowly lowered it as if the cow was walking away over a ridge.
The curious bull came closer, to the bottom of the coulee, and raked some trees with its antlers. McPherson cow called again, flashed the decoy and slowly lowered it.
Since the bull was coming up the hillside, McPherson planted the decoy and went behind a log to hide and, hopefully, get a shot.
"That was the dumbest thing I could've done," he said. Because when the bull came up and saw the decoy, it stopped. McPherson estimated the bull would have scored more than 400. He noted any bull taken with a bow is exceptional, and a bull scoring more than 260 typical, 355 nontypical, makes the Pope and Young record book. The world record nontypical bull taken with a bow scored 442 0/8, while the typical record is 409 2/8.
The bull was quartering toward McPherson at 20 yards when it stopped to consider the decoy only 10 yards away. McPherson was at full draw, waiting for the bull to take one more step and present a better target. But after hesitating a second, the bull bolted.
"I had set up the rump decoy in the open, right where the bull topped the ridge, he was about 10 yards from the decoy and there was nothing to cover the leg poles," McPherson said. "So it looked odd."
What he should have done, McPherson said, is lay the decoy down, making it appear as though the elk had gone over the hill. Maybe then the bull would have walked past him looking for the cow instead of hanging up.
To set up, simply pop the decoy open, then insert the two leg poles and you are ready to go. The take down procedure is accomplished by removing the poles and using a simple twist fold technique on the decoy body.
When folded, they are approximately 2 inches thick and 16 inches in diameter. Added to this great feature, they are flexible enough to stuff and conform into your pack.
Lightweight, durable, compact, realistic and effective everything a serious hunter is looking for! Ordering now is important as quantities are limited. It is a must to get ready for the hunting season early.