Elk hunting gear


New Member
Jan 10, 2021
Need some help. This will be my first year elk hunting . Was wanting thoughts on binos 10 x 42 , calls to purchase and magazine subscriptions.

I need to keep my budget no more between $500 and $1000 On the binos.Thoughts on Vortex? or for that price point is there something better?

What would be a good set up for a beginner on calls to purchase.

Should I join Rocky Mountain Elk foundation or is there group or magazine that might be better.

appreciate the advice.



Veteran member
Oct 12, 2014
Woodland Park, Colorado
Vortex is a good middle ground/price point bino.
Carlton, Rocky Mountain Hunting Calls or Phelps for diaphrams.
Primos Hyper lip for a blow call.
Magazines tough to say there. Many of mine get read once and go on the shelf.

Elk 101 course or Chris Roes course would be my recommendation on money well spent.

Primos hyper lip is an excellent beginner call. One of the few out there that does a correct assembly mew in my opinion.

Feel free to PM me if you have any questions.

Hope that helps.


Veteran member
Mar 28, 2016
Gypsum, Co
What season are you planning on hunting? If you are not hunting the rut I wouldn't worry too much about a call, however elk are very vocal animals and will be bugling well into November but that doesn't mean that they will come into a call.

Colorado Parks and Wildlife has a pretty good Elk University on their web site that has a lot of good information for the beginner elk hunter.

Vortex are so so binoculars in my mind. For a mid range I like Leupold better. They both have a lifetime warranty but Vortex has a refurbished shop that sells ones that have been returned and repaired. I asked myself just how many get sent back that they can have a refurbished shop?


Veteran member
Jul 8, 2015
After dealing with Vortex and Leupold Sub $300 binocular repair I feel vortex is the way to go.

Just remember when you send the binoculars back to vortex to smash them with a hammer first so they cant just "repair them" quickly box them up, and send them right back like they did to me.....the last time I sent them in for repair (The same repair) I wrote them a letter that said if they didnt replace them I was going to cut them in half with a chop saw and send them back...they finally sent me a new pair....

Took Vortex 7 days to send me binoculars back.

Took Leupold MONTHS....
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Veteran member
Apr 23, 2016
I agree with jimp on the calls. unless your hunting the rut calling will probably hurt more then help you. especially if you have no experience calling and talking elk. if you are hunting the rut I have always liked wayne carltons super blue diagram as my go to. takes some practice but master it and you can mimick pretty much any sound an elk will make and the only call you will ever need.

vortex razors are pretty nice binos . they may be just a bit much for your budget but if you watch sales you may be able pick one up for 1000. in my opinion . unless you are going to be hunting nothing but forest with low visibility , binos are the one thing no hunter should skimp on. IT is my thought that good glass is the most important item in a hunters arsenal. more important even then the weapon they choose to hunt with.
I understand you are on a budget but would recommend if your looking for $500-$1000 don't skimp . spend the 1000 and if it is at all possible spend more !!!!!!!!!!!!!! good glass is an item you truly get what you pay for .you don't really get in to anything worth owning till you get up to the thousand range. I went through probablt 10 pairs going cheap till I finally got wise enough to spend the dough and get a pair of swarovskis slcs that have lasted me over 20 years ,so far.
go cheap and you will likely be spending it again and again and again .

buy once ,cry once!

as for mag subscriptions IF you are looking for teaching , don't bother, there is plenty of free content on the net . a wealth of info just on this site alone .

but if you just enjoy reading about others hunts and keeping up on new products and such
check out eastmans hunting and or bow
RMEFs bugle mag is good
petersons hunting..

there are literally hundreds to choose from and mostly, one is as good as another. IMHO
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Eastmans' Staff / Moderator
Staff member
Feb 3, 2014
Lots of good options at 800 for Bono’s, and I will echo others on the calling portion.

A TagHub elite membership will get you access to the elk hunting handbook, and within the month...digital editions of every one of Mike Eastman’s books. Not to mention the elk specific content in the journals.