A broadside elk is a big target, but you still need to make a well placed shot.
Your dreams have come true. You've located a big bull elk, he's in range and standing broadside. What you do next will be the difference between meat in the freezer and tag soup, or worse yet, a wounded animal left in the woods. What do you do in this instant?
Do you know where to place your shot for the best odds of success. Take a moment to think about it and what you know about elk anatomy. Then watch the video below that goes into depth on elk shot placement. It may not be as obvious as you are thinking.
Even if you're an experienced elk hunter, it's a helpful bit of review for the next time you're in the woods with the bull of a lifetime only feet away.
How'd you do in that initial assessment we asked you to do? Would your shot have hit the vital heart and lung area? Will you be spending the next few hours skinning and dressing an animal? Or are you headed off the mountain in frustration with an unfilled tag? If your answer is the second one, it pays to spend a little more time reviewing shot placement before your next hunt. You owe it to yourself and the animal to make the cleanest kill possible.
Exercises like the one shown in the video are a great way to prepare for your elk hunt. By visualizing possible shot opportunities, you'll be ready when it's a real bull standing in your sights.
Practice with your bow or rifle is also important. Don't wait until the week before the season to start a shooting regimen. Get out there now and shoot with confidence when next fall rolls around.