General rifle season for elk and deer opens near the end of October and runs through the Sunday following Thanksgiving. The first three weeks of the season we primarily cater to elk/mule deer hunters and the last two weeks are set aside for trophy whitetail hunts.
The terrain is demanding, but our area offers some of the finest trophy bulls available. Because of our vast hunting territory and rugged terrain our elk population is large and on a steady increase. Recent hunting regulations governing our area allow a very limited number of cows to be harvested and no spike bulls. Our elk population contains more trophy bulls in the herd than any other area in the nation. Many bulls that are harvested are between six and ten years old. These bulls that reach maturity carry antlers that have impressive beam and tine length and unbelievable antler mass. Many bulls scoring over 400 B&C have been killed in this area of northwest Montana by bow and rifle.
The hunting methods vary from glassing open hillsides to still hunting in open timber. Because the bulls have lost up to 20 percent of their body weight during the rut, they may feed up to ten hours a day to gain the reserves necessary to survive the winter. Common shots range from 200 to 400 yards, but could be as distant as 700 yards.
These elk hunts are physically demanding so I recommend arriving in the best physical shape possible. As elk licenses are available only in combination with a deer license, all elk hunts are combination hunts. One buck of either species may be harvested with your bull.