Tactics in Bad Weather

VinnyG

New Member
Oct 4, 2018
29
11
Colorado
Good evening everyone!
This upcoming weekend is the opening of 2nd Rifle in CO, and the weather looks like it is going to be pretty gnarly where I plan to go. How do early OCT snowstorms affect elk behavior? Most of the experience I have is from hunting whitetails, do elk react similarly? Opening morning should have low temps around 10*, snow and wind. What are your thoughts on a good strategy for getting it done in bad weather?
 

go_deep

Veteran member
Nov 30, 2014
1,809
268
Wyoming
The colder it get the more food the animals have fi put in their bellies to stay warm, on their feet more. If you get fresh snow that's great to verify there's elk by tracks, and if you cut a really fresh track I'd follow it. Most people are going to only hunt a few hours in the morning and evening, if you can all day it that might be the difference.
 

taskswap

Active Member
Jul 9, 2018
207
70
Colorado
Not sure if you got your dates confused but... "this coming weekend" (the 12th) is Elk Rifle 1. "2nd rifle" is Oct 19-27 (not this coming weekend, but the weekend after)...

Vinny's advice is still the same. Deer get pushed out by snow a lot faster than elk. Mule deer will work their way "down" a few hundred feet a week, once snow starts pushing them. Be prepared for them to work their way onto private lands and be moving more at night, when it's not legal hunting hours. Elk will stay high until snow literally FORCES them down (generally) but they can go dozens of miles a day. If you're seeing their tracks, you're probably way behind them!

I just got back from a grouse hunt in Kremmling. We camped around 9200' and it was around 25F overnight with frequent wind. Come prepared, snow or not!
 
  • Like
Reactions: Bonecollector

VinnyG

New Member
Oct 4, 2018
29
11
Colorado
Thanks for the replies, and yes, I did get the dates mixed up. I have a antlerless tag for 1st Rifle, and and bull tag for 2nd. I appreciate the advice. As the days progress the forecast has become a bit more favorable but whatever comes I look forward to getting out there.
 

ScottR

Eastmans' Staff / Moderator
Staff member
Feb 3, 2014
5,718
316
www.eastmans.com
In my mind on that kind of hunt the number one thing that I work relentlessly on is an ability to get dry. The hunt I just returned from had 4 inches of snow that eventually turned into mud, which turned into frozen ground, which turned back into mud every day. The boots and socks were always wet after hunting all day, the packable wood stove made a huge difference.
 
  • Like
Reactions: VinnyG

VinnyG

New Member
Oct 4, 2018
29
11
Colorado
That's a good point @ScottR . I bought gaiters and I plan to bring my snowshoes so I'm not postholing if it does end up getting that bad. I should probably run out and get some more good socks, it's amazing how fast I burn through them now that I have moved out to Colorado and am hiking/camping/hunting much more.
 

ScottR

Eastmans' Staff / Moderator
Staff member
Feb 3, 2014
5,718
316
www.eastmans.com
That's a good point @ScottR . I bought gaiters and I plan to bring my snowshoes so I'm not postholing if it does end up getting that bad. I should probably run out and get some more good socks, it's amazing how fast I burn through them now that I have moved out to Colorado and am hiking/camping/hunting much more.
I had three pairs of socks with me that I swapped through. Granted the llamas were hauling all of my stuff, two would probably suffice.
 

JimP

Veteran member
Mar 28, 2016
3,669
411
Gypsum, Co
If you are in a area where snowshoes are required you need to hunt lower where you the animals are
 

Maxhunter

Very Active Member
Apr 10, 2011
732
47
Wyoming
When the weather bad or cold a lot of hunters don't spend a lot of time in the woods. I've had some of my best hunting when the weather is bad or it's cold. I stay out all day. Just make sure you have the right clothing. Good luck!