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It has been a productive summer of scouting for elk in MT and WY. With two elk tags in my pocket for these two states I have been consumed with planning and daydreaming!
I am often asked how you scout elk in the summer. Well… You don’t really scout for the elk (although they are always a welcome sight) but for the signs that show where they were the previous year during the rut. That means looking for wallows, rubs, trails, bedding areas, and travel corridors. Be sure to use a GPS to mark likely areas where the elk may be come September. I like to mark heavy trails, rubs, wallows, water, and bedding areas. If you can locate travel corridors using ridgelines you will be putting yourself a step ahead of the elk when they are moving around a lot. Also mark areas where the elk will not travel; areas that make the elk travel a certain way such as boulder fields and cliffs.
Using GPS software that benefits you is also very important. GPS chips such as onXmaps has been very beneficial as it deviates between public/private land and also shows land ownership if you plan to knock on a few doors to gain permission. Lots of possibilites to include apps for your smart phone or tablet. Great stuff!
With that being said, I have had some great luck at finding new areas and revisiting areas where I have had good luck in the past. The 2015 elk seasons will be of epic proportions I am sure! Stay tuned!