Early Season Elk
Featured Guests: Laramy Miller, Steve Chappell, Tim Lesser, Kevin Kolman
Tune in to The Revolution with Jim and Trav this week as we talk early season elk, prime elk hunting states, draw applications and over-the-counter opportunities. Plus, we’ll dive into spot-and stalk-tactics, pinpointing productive food and water sources, hunting public land, calling techniques, essential gear and tools for the job and much more. Joining us will be Laramy Miller, host of Last of a Breed. Then Leupold's Vice President of Product Development, Tim Lesser, and Steve Chappell from Elk Camp. Jim and Trav's Early Season Elk broadcast is presented by Outdoor Channel, Sportsman Channel, World Fishing Network and MyOutdoorTV.
Laramy Miller, known as “Sasquatch” by many has branched off on his own to show an authentic look at his everyday life. A look that isn’t sugar coated, but shows the traditional way he approaches life, the outdoors and hunting. In his new show Last of a Breed on Sportsman Channel, Laramy opens a door for viewers to see what it’s like to live a day in his shoes. He joins The Revolution this week to talk about his new show and also dish out some helpful tips for early season elk hunting. When people think of elk hunting, their minds typically go to the rut and screaming bulls. However, the early season is different. Laramy tells Jim and Trav that the early season can actually give hunters a better opportunity to kill a big mature herd bull because at this point they aren’t herded up yet and being saved by cows. In order to take advantage of the early-season activity, Laramy cautions against calling too much. Leading up to the rut, bulls are establishing dominance and aren’t overly vocal so stalking and slipping within close proximity is the strategy Laramy prefers. Once he’s in close, Laramy says he likes to follow with a challenge bugle. This challenge may very well bring in a big herd bull to defend his territory and give the hunter a perfect shot opportunity. He’ll explain why this same tactic doesn’t work later in the season when satellite bulls and cows will likely come in too. During the early season, a decent amount of activity will be centered around water sources and wallows. Laramy says that in addition to hydration, the elk are actively searching for scent and also covering themselves in mud to keep the bugs off. So, finding these water sources can be a solid way to create an ambush point. Laramy tells Jim and Trav that he scouts year-round, which has given him an understanding of how the elk move and where they go at different times during the year. During the early season, Laramy says that Northern facing canyons with easterly or westerly winds are where you’ll find the elk. These locations tend to be dark and have plenty of food and water – everything that big bulls need. Finally, Laramy will talk about what happens after-the-shot field care. Laramy tells Jim and Trav that as soon as you get an animal on the ground you want to get the hide off as soon as possible. The longer the hide is left on the carcass, the slower the enzymes break down which will lead to tougher and gamier tasting meat. He’ll also highlight the importance of being realistic about packing out your game in elk country. Tune in as Laramy Miller talks early elk season strategy this week. Also, be sure to catch Last of a Breed on Sportsman Channel, Saturdays at 10 am ET.
Steve Chappell has been a professional hunting guide for more than twenty years and in that time has become a widely respected elk guide. Now all of his knowledge and experience is on display as he hosts the new show Elk Camp on Sportsman Channel. Steve joins The Revolution this week and tells Jim and Trav that he has been doing some preseason scouting for elk in Arizona. Steve says that scouting for him entails driving and looking at the habitat, terrain, vegetation and finding areas that will be most productive for calling during the upcoming archery season. While he scouts, Steve says he looks for elk too, explaining that while they are in the velvet and in their summer mode, the bulls are still predictable and easier to observe. Recent rains in Arizona have caused a green-up, and Steve will talk about the new water sources that are created as a result of the rain. He tells Jim and Trav that when it rains, elk patterns change and they aren’t as predictable to come in to set water sources. Instead, he says that when they can, elk prefer natural water sources even in the form of puddles, a hole in a rock or a drainage ditch rather than a man-made source of water which they associate with danger.
Often times, hunters tend to think immediately about Colorado when it comes to elk hunting. However, Steve says that there is a lot of great elk hunting that is overlooked in states like New Mexico, Arizona, Utah, Nevada and more. While they have exceptional hunting, these states differ in that there isn’t the over-the-counter availability that Colorado has – so draw odds are tougher and there are extensive landowner tags to contend with to hunt the better bulls. So, when deciding where to hunt or apply, Steve says that for hunters that are looking to have an opportunity to hunt elk and to experience some interaction, Colorado provides a great opportunity because of the sheer size of its resident herd. Success rates are reflective of this as well. In states like Arizona where tags are limited, and you don’t have a lot of competition, the success rates are better. Steve tells Jim and Trav that his clients generally see an early season success rate of 75% or better and of those that go home without bulls, they had the opportunity or even shot. In Colorado where over-the-counter tags make hunting much more available to more hunters, Steve says success rates tend to be lower. He says that often times the bulk of the elk taken each year are tagged by the same hunters that have a lot of experience. The other thing that makes hunting in Colorado more challenging is the terrain. Steve says that hiking up and down steep mountains, dealing with high altitudes and conquering the landscape can all play into your success rate. He'll also briefly discuss calling strategy. Listen in for tons of early season elk hunting tips from Steve Chappell of Chappell Guide Service and host of Elk Camp on Sportsman Channel, Saturdays at 9:30 am ET.
Hunting out west means wide open country and covering a lot of ground and when elk hunting, it means spending a good amount of time glassing those expanses. Tim Lesser, the VP of Product Development at Leupold joins The Revolution this week with a comprehensive look at some Leupold products that can make your hunt more successful. Tim will talk the ideal binocular for elk hunting that will do the hard work for you. He’ll highlight rifle scopes that are up to the challenge of long range shots but also work well at shorter distances. He’ll talk about the importance of judging distance and why rangefinders are such essential tools. When it comes to recovery, Tim will talk thermal imaging products that will help you track your game quicker and more effectively. Finally, he’ll talk about the incredible Leupold warranty that safe guards every investment you make in Leupold optics. Tune in!
True or False: The glorious white smoke that charmingly wafts out of your charcoal or gas grill from your patio or preferred camping locale, is an all-natural pheromone? Yes, airborne molecules that elicit a reaction in a member of the same species are called pheromones and according to Kevin Kolman, The Head Grill Master at Weber, your charming personality and stunning good looks aren’t what the ladies are after. They came for the brisket and baked beans. This week Weber Grill Master Kevin Kolman will breakdown indirect grilling on a Weber Kettle grill and how the charcoal briquette “snake method” of grilling is precise and easy to do. He’ll also discuss Weber’s unique line of charcoal briquettes that, unlike their competitors, come in a weather tight, resealable, 20-pound premium bag. These pillow-shaped briquettes are made of all-natural hardwood, are sustainably harvested, and contain zero added chemicals. Moving into meat talk, Kevin will target marinades, seasonings and the pros and cons of bringing your meat to room temp. Finally, he’ll talk grilling steaks and the importance of grilling with the lid on in order to get a perfectly cooked steak. Tune in for a super informational, and fun, barbeque class with Weber Grill Master, Kevin Kolman.