Cow Elk Hunting — Dallen and Weston Take Cow Elk at 506 Yards

Dallen and Weston watching elk.

Dallen and Weston watching some bull elk further up the canyon.

Dallen with his cow elk and X-Bolt Stainless Stalker 270 WSM.

Dallen with his very large cow elk and X-Bolt Stainless Stalker 270 WSM.

Dallen and I with his cow elk.

Dallen and I with his cow elk.

Weston and his cow elk.

Weston and his cow elk.

Dallen's cow elk loaded on a Pack Wheel game cart.

Dallen's cow elk loaded on a Pack Wheel game cart. We knew he had a large cow and did he ever. Once off the mountian the scales showed that there was 177 lbs. of boned out meat. This is the largest cow we have ever taken.

Dallen and Weston hauling cow elk with Pack Wheel game carts.

Dallen and Weston hauling their cow elk with Pack Wheel game carts.

Recovered 140 gr Accubond bullet from cow elk..

Here is a recovered 270 WSM handloaded 140 gr Accubond that was resting against the hide on the opposite side of Dallen's cow elk. The muzzle velocity with this handload is just over 3300 fps. The 140 gr Accubond bullet now weighs 109 grains after being shot through a cow elk at 506 yards.

After my successful trip up the mountain to get my cow elk it was time for my son Dallen and brother Weston to get their elk.

Dallen is now a freshman in high school and an avid basketball player. Finding a day when there wasn't a game or practice was difficult. Luckily on Presidents Day Dallen was out of school and the coach gave them the day off. So early Monday morning Weston, Dallen and I took off up the canyon looking for elk.

We knew the elk had moved to the north side of the main canyon this year. The elk had been wintering on the south side ever since the deep snow of the 2007-08 winter. This was the first year that we had been seeing them back in their more traditional wintering areas of years past.

We didn't have to hike long before we found eight cow elk. We setup on them at 600 yards and debated the shot. We then decided to hurry up to the top of a small ridge to close the distance without being seen. Once to the ridge we had no other way to close the distance any further without spooking the elk over the ridge they were on. Dallen and Weston setup on shooting sticks and I ranged them at 506 yards. A quick look at the hold over bullet drop chart I have taped to my Nikon Monarch 4-16x BDC scope called for holding on the top of the third hold over ring in the BDC reticle.

Dallen took the first shot which was answered with a solid whopping sound. The cow remained standing but was looking very sick. Dallen loaded another shell and watched the cow to make sure she didn't go anywhere. While he was keeping an eye on his cow elk Weston shot a cow as they filtered around the ridge and into the canyon out of our view. From the looks of it Weston's cow was hit a little further back but solidly hit. This cow made it around into the canyon out of view and we soon learned that she didn't go very far. Dallen's cow tried to follow the rest of the cows and Dallen put another bullet into her to put her down. After Dallen's elk was down we hiked around into the canyon and quickly found the other cow and Weston put her down for good.

The 140 gr Accubond handloads continue to perform well out of our 270 WSM rifles however I am really excited to try the new 150 gr Accubond LR bullets that Nosler just introduced. They should be very accurate at long range and have great performance on big game. I can't wait to give them a try.

On this trip Weston and I both had Pack Wheel game carts strapped on our packs, making our packs just an extra 9 or so pounds heavier but giving us the ability to haul the elk straight off the mountain once we get one down. Weston had a 20 inch wheel and I was testing the 24 inch wheeled version of the Pack Wheel. Weston after using both the 20 and 24 inch wheel on the Pack Wheel to haul elk commented to me that while both wheels worked great. The 24 inch wheel was a little smoother rolling off the mountain. However if he had never used the 24 inch wheel he would have been just as happy with the 20 inch version as it worked just fine.

After boning out the elk we loaded them on the Pack Wheels and off the mountain we went. All the years of me killing myself to get an elk off the mountain have been a thing of the past. The Pack Wheel has made it a breeze to get critters back off the mountain.

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