Elk Hunting Outfitter/Guide/Blog Advice

Emlet

AH member
Joined
Aug 21, 2017
Messages
26
Reaction score
10
Location
Maine
Member of
SCI, NRA Life Member, BHRGC
Hunted
PA, ME, MO, WI
I hope this note reaches anybody who is reading it in good health. I'm continuously impressed with the wealth of knowledge I find on this site and figured I would throw an elk question out to everybody. I've not had opportunity to elk hunt.....yet....and recently started looking at different guide services, outfitters, trespass fee, drop camp options etc and find myself rather overwhelmed. I also have found it hard to get reviews on various outfitters and this only adds to my lack of understanding.

Do any of you have any opinions regarding good elk hunting outfits whether that be anything from fully guided to drop camps? Or know of "good" DIY elk options for someone who has plenty of hiking, backpack camping, outdoor survival skills but ZERO horse handling skills?

I don't have a particular area in mind other than out in the western part of the US somewhere. Would rather hunt bull elk vs cows and while I don't need to kill a trophy ..... having the possibility would be nice. :love:

Thank you ahead of time for your opinions. Am happy to answer any questions you may have for me.
 

LivingTheDream

AH legend
Joined
Jan 27, 2015
Messages
2,359
Reaction score
3,454
Media
19
Hunting reports
Africa
3
USA/Canada
1
Europe
1
@Emlet how often do you plan to hunt elk? Is this a once in a lifetime thing or annual pilgrimage to hunt elk? That would greatly influence the advice or recommendation you get.
 

Uintaelkhunter

AH enthusiast
Joined
Jun 10, 2011
Messages
301
Reaction score
259
Location
Utah
Media
76
Hunting reports
Africa
4
Member of
SCI
Hunted
RSA,Mozambique,Zim,USA,Asia
What are you looking for in a elk hunt. Do you want a big bull or a average (300ish) bull are you ok with a spike bull. Also do you want a foo it yourself kinda hunt drop camp or a fully guided one?
I will give you my take as I normally hunt elk every year and live out west (Utah) as it is.
Colorado is probably your best bet and chance for a over the counter tag you can buy but finding a decent place will be hard or pay a trespass fee on some property
Idaho has a few drop camp semi guided hunts that you can look into ( storm creek outfitters ) has drop camps and guided hunts I have used and they are reasonable priced and you get the experience.
Utah has draw tags that are hard to get and the otc tags are hard to hunt also overcrouded with a low percentage take. On the opposite end though if you got the cash and buy a premium tag fully guided you may take a record book animal. I have a good friend that guides for (Tines Up ) and I believe they may be a good place to look at also wade lemon and mossback outfitters.
Also will add for the budget friendly Sage Country outfitters or royal ivory both will guide you on a over the counter tag but will greatly increase your odds of bagging a bull
I'm sure there are other guys out there in western states that can give you more info on the states they hunt
 
Last edited:

thi9elsp

Gold supporter
AH fanatic
Joined
Sep 19, 2011
Messages
970
Reaction score
911
Location
USA
Media
24
Articles
1
Hunting reports
Africa
1
Australia/NZ
1
Member of
Life Member: Buckmasters, NRA, RMEF, DSC, SCI, and CCA
Hunted
Zimbabwe, Mozambique
Firstly, my brother is a retired USFWS officer from the Cody, WY / Yellowstone area. When I asked him in 2011 who I should hunt with - knowing he would guide me to someone who would do it legally, ensure my safety and provide the most unique experience in the Yellowstone area he gave me two outfitters:

http://trianglex.com/wilderness-adventures/big-game-hunting/

or

http://www.yellowstoneoutfitters.com/Wyoming-Elk-Hunting-Trips.php

When I booked, Triangle had a slot open so that's who I hunted with, Yellowstone was 2 year wait. 6 - 7 hour pack ride in to camp. 10 days hunting in the Teton Wilderness. Two Oceans Pass and Pacific Creek area. Amazing - saw a grizzly, wolf tracks, etc.... 7 of us in camp. We all had our bulls by day 3.

Yellowstone Outfitters is in the Thoroughfare. I believe it is the farthest point from a road in any direction in the continental US. It is a spot that Roosevelt really cherished. If I go again, I'll try to book with Lynn. However, it is an even longer ride into camp.

So, either way, be ready to ride a horse. But it is well worth it.

PM me if you want any further details.

John
 

375 Ruger Fan

Gold supporter
AH legend
Joined
Jun 14, 2015
Messages
3,996
Reaction score
6,146
Location
Shreveport, Louisiana
Media
237
Articles
5
Hunting reports
Africa
7
USA/Canada
4
Australia/NZ
1
Member of
NRA, DSC
Hunted
Namibia, Zimbabwe, South Africa (Eastern Cape & NW), Canada, New Zealand, Alaska, TX, LA, MO, OH, MT, ID, WA, WY
Around 1999 or 2000 (remember Y2K?) I got interested in planning an elk hunt. I was living in Louisiana at the time, but as a kid had lived in Washington state and Idaho. I bought several books and learned that some states had lotteries for non-residents, so it's not as easy to just pick a state and say I am going to hunt there this year. Also, based on my research, I decided I wanted to hunt near Yellowstone, so either Idaho, Montana or Wyoming. Montana had the most straightforward deal for non-residents, what was then called an outfitter's sponsored tag. Basically, if you booked a hunt through a licensed outfitter, you were guaranteed a tag. A non-resident tag for a elk & deer combo is around $1,000. I researched maybe 20 outfitter. A few had gone out of business, other weren't too appealing as they took 8 to 10 hunters a week. One outfitter that I phoned just really clicked with me as they appeared to check all the boxes. They gave me a long list of client referrals and told me to make sure I talked to so-n-so on the list because they wanted me to talk to a guy that didn't get an elk. That guy told me they saw elk or were on elk almost everyday. He had a shot opportunity and blew it. He booked another hunt with the outfitter for the following year. That's the background on how I came to hunt with Rising Son Outfitters (http://www.huntinginmontana.com/ ). Since 2001, I've hunted with Randy and Dena Petrich 7 or 8 time. I've taken 4 elk, 1 mule deer and 1 whitetail. One of the elk was a 330 class P&Y 6x7. The muley was also a 6x7. I will be taking my son-in-law on his first elk hunt this November. It is always a special treat to go play cowboy in Montana and hunt Wapiti.
 

gillettehunter

AH legend
Joined
Sep 10, 2009
Messages
3,577
Reaction score
3,502
Location
WYOMING
Media
83
Hunting reports
Africa
6
USA/Canada
4
Asia/M.East
2
Australia/NZ
1
Hunted
Namibia, Kyrgyzstan(2) South Africa(4) New Zealand Zambia(2)
There are a lot of good companies that will treat you well. Some good advice above. You might look at John Porter at Mourning Creek outfitters. I hunted sheep with him a few yrs ago and got my ram. I think he has only 2 groups of elk hunters in a year. I believe that he said their average bull was 350. Nice elk. I also see some good info on Non-typical outfitters in Western Wy. It appears that they do well and take some nice bulls. Best of luck Bruce
 

PHOENIX PHIL

AH ambassador
Joined
Apr 15, 2009
Messages
9,251
Reaction score
7,747
Media
54
Articles
2
Hunting reports
Africa
8
USA/Canada
2
Member of
SCI
Hunted
USA, S. Africa
Some years ago, like 14 years, I met Steve Chappell who is an elk outfitter here in Arizona. I've never hunted with him as I live in this part of the world and have never used a guide for elk. But I did spend some time talking to him at some sort of elk gathering put on by AZGFD. I was impressed with the man and have since heard a lot of good about him.

On that alone, I would not recommend you book with him, but I would recommend you check him out. Oh and if you're fortunate enough to draw an Arizona elk tag, you should target a big bull. There are other states with fine elk hunting, but Arizona has to be near the top for trophy quality.

http://chappellguideservice.com/home
 

curtism1234

AH fanatic
Joined
Apr 28, 2016
Messages
803
Reaction score
862
Media
6
My brother is currently in Colorado right now hunting and has been going a few years now with the 2 person party always being successful on one elk (considering a lot of time is lost when one gets one). He does DYI hunting over water holes that he finds on google earth during the early pre-bugle season. Last year his buddy got a real nice 5x5. I think bear season is in too.
 

ScottG

AH fanatic
Joined
Mar 18, 2014
Messages
761
Reaction score
440
Don't we have an outfitter that is a sponsor here. He should be able to help.
 

Emlet

AH member
Joined
Aug 21, 2017
Messages
26
Reaction score
10
Location
Maine
Member of
SCI, NRA Life Member, BHRGC
Hunted
PA, ME, MO, WI
@Emlet how often do you plan to hunt elk? Is this a once in a lifetime thing or annual pilgrimage to hunt elk? That would greatly influence the advice or recommendation you get.

@LivingTheDream Good question. I suppose I would answer by saying it would be a once in a lifetime thing that I would end up doing again! I don't see it being an annual pilgrimage but I would like to elk hunt once every few years. I also don't need to be pampered. Just looking for a good place to hunt elk with a "decent" chance of success (I fully understand that decent for one person can be very different for another).
 

Emlet

AH member
Joined
Aug 21, 2017
Messages
26
Reaction score
10
Location
Maine
Member of
SCI, NRA Life Member, BHRGC
Hunted
PA, ME, MO, WI
What are you looking for in a elk hunt. Do you want a big bull or a average (300ish) bull are you ok with a spike bull. Also do you want a foo it yourself kinda hunt drop camp or a fully guided one?
I will give you my take as I normally hunt elk every year and live out west (Utah) as it is.
Colorado is probably your best bet and chance for a over the counter tag you can buy but finding a decent place will be hard or pay a trespass fee on some property
Idaho has a few drop camp semi guided hunts that you can look into ( storm creek outfitters ) has drop camps and guided hunts I have used and they are reasonable priced and you get the experience.
Utah has draw tags that are hard to get and the otc tags are hard to hunt also overcrouded with a low percentage take. On the opposite end though if you got the cash and buy a premium tag fully guided you may take a record book animal. I have a good friend that guides for (Tines Up ) and I believe they may be a good place to look at also wade lemon and mossback outfitters.
Also will add for the budget friendly Sage Country outfitters or royal ivory both will guide you on a over the counter tag but will greatly increase your odds of bagging a bull
I'm sure there are other guys out there in western states that can give you more info on the states they hunt
@Uintaelkhunter I'm quite ok with an average bull. Obviously wouldn't shy away from a big bull. Not interested in shooting a spike. As for drop camp vs fully guided. Would most likely go with a fully guided hunt the first time and then would feel more comfortable being in a drop camp situation.

I really appreciate your input and guide information. VERY helpful for me.
 

Emlet

AH member
Joined
Aug 21, 2017
Messages
26
Reaction score
10
Location
Maine
Member of
SCI, NRA Life Member, BHRGC
Hunted
PA, ME, MO, WI
Thank you to everybody so far who has chimed in! And yes, if there is an elk guide who is a sponsor here I'd happily check them out.
 

Forum statistics

Threads
36,641
Messages
694,202
Members
64,169
Latest member
MindaBlant
 

 

 

Latest posts

Latest profile posts

Rifle57 wrote on Rimshot's profile.
I bought some bullets from Rimshot and he is good to trade with!
Greetings all! I've been a hunter for 50 years, but only now planning a trip to Africa. I was fortunate and successfully bid on a couple hunts for plains game in SA later this year and next. Also a rare Native Texas (5th generation) and USMC Vet. Hunt safe y'all!
uujm wrote on trg's profile.
I am looking for a Safari Express. Was yours made in New Haven or South Carolina? Any other details you can give me? I am very motivated to buy.
pimes wrote on flatwater bill's profile.
Hello Bill - can you tell me that landowner/ranch/outfitter - Thank you!
Pete0905 wrote on damundsen87's profile.
Hello
Is the Khales 1-6 still for sale?
Thanks
Josh
 
Top