World champion elk caller and ‘Extreme Elk Magazine’ co-founder, Corey Jacobsen, provides calling tips, the magazine’s future, and other elk-related subjects in this exclusive interview.
Born and raised with the Idaho elk woods as his backyard, Corey Jacobsen, was predestined to live and work with some form of elk hunting or another. It just so happened that by environment and pedigree, his dad is renown call-maker Rocky Jacobsen, that his career would include a mantel of calling accolades, a website with up-close and personal elk hunts, and one of the preeminent elk-centric publications available today, “Extreme Elk Magazine.”
I had a chance to pick the mind of one of the most successful and humble elk hunters in the woods today.
How did your journey and career get started?
“Growing up with a father (Rocky) that was a guide and successful competition caller lent itself to a natural evolution of me being an elk hunter and caller. Being a kid at the contests that my dad would participate in helped establish the foundation and attraction to participating in the same competitions.”
With 7 world titles under your belt, how do you stay sharp and ready for the competitions?
“The tongue is a trained muscle like any other in your body so practice is necessary to remain sharp. Windshield time as I go to trade shows offers a great opportunity to stay sharp as do the number of seminars I hold throughout the year.”
“Part of the process is finding the right diaphragm that sounds and feels right. Once I find that one, I’ll set it aside specifically for the calling competitions and/or hunting season.”
When calling in a competition, do you find yourself calling to a judge’s liking or as you would in the elk woods?
“Each group of judges have their preferences. Some prefer the raspy guttural call and some prefer the smooth scale progression. The more time you put in at these competitions, the more success you have. The real competition comes in September, a bull elk in the rut is the truest judge out there.”
Extreme Elk Magazine; what launched you into a written publication?
“We felt there was a niche to be filled. Elk hunters like to talk about, watch, and read about elk hunting. We were able to spin off our website following with the magazine.”
“The content we provide is supported greatly by the contributions of our readers. We are all elk hunters and the hunting stories our readers provide diversify what we can offer. The excitement and passion that every hunter feels is exactly what we want to convey within our covers.”
What is the longest tracking job you’ve had on an elk hunt?
“It was on a friend’s bull. Over the course of almost three miles and 10 hours we worked on two drops of blood and this bull’s track to be able to notch the tag.
The tracking experience is as much a part of the hunt as releasing the arrow or pulling the trigger.”
What is the trick to a good low growl and grunt when calling?
“It’s 100% vocalization, you have to growl like your frustrated while you are working the diaphragm.”
When do know to bugle, cow call, or remain silent?
“I am inherently impatient when hunting the rut and will more often than not call first. Recognizing the state of the rut can help determine which calls will work and which ones won’t.”
“The bull to cow ratio can also determine how interested a bull will be in the calls you throw out. In the peak, when a herd bull is fully interested in the cows he’s already gathered, going in silent can get you close (less than 100 yards) and releasing a challenge bugle can bring him the rest of the way.”
Have you ever called in a grizzly bear?
“I’ve never personally called in a bear, but have had some close calls with wolves where we hunt in Idaho. The predator/prey relationship definitely can play a role in how you call as well as how the elk will respond to the calls you offer.”
Even as one of the most decorated callers, Corey remains humble and aware of the culture he is part of to be able to make his profession. “Extreme Elk Magazine” remains a worthwhile subscription and source of information.
As your 2015 hunting season plans begin to unfold, seek out the publication and the wealth of knowledge within the pages and when your hard work and efforts pay off send the recount “Extreme Elk’s” way.
Photos courtesy of Corey Jacobsen and Extreme Elk Magazine