Join Kristy Titus and her father Lewis on their annual Oregon, public land, DIY archery elk hunt. This one week in this special place is the heartbeat of her family. Watch and find out why.
The RMEF Ladies Night Out Summer Solstice event was held at the Chinook Winds Casino in Lincoln City Oregon. Featuring a wonderful selection of games, raffles and live auction. This event was catered to the ladies to meet other women from across the state that are also committed to ensuring a bright feature for elk, other wildlife , their habitat and our hunting heritage. I led a group discussion about empowering women in the outdoors with the spirit to unite the room for conservation and RMEF mission.
On this episode of Pursue The Wild, Kristy Titus has the honor of taking Sgt. USMC (retired) Kirstie Ennis, on her first elk hunt. Ennis was an aerial gunner that was severely wounded in a helicopter crash while serving her country in June 2012. She suffered severe facial trauma, spinal cord damage, damage to both arms and was in limb salvage for many years. Since this hunt took place, Ennis had her left leg amputated above the knee as a result of injuries sustained during the crash.
“I wouldn’t be where I am today without hunting, especially going through what I did,” said Sgt. USMC (retired) Kirstie Ennis in the opening lines of the show. “The outdoors does something to you. Its gets you up and moving.”
Ennis’ hunt is thanks to the work of RMEF and Wounded Warrior Outdoors, who gained special access to private timberland in the Pondosa Tract in California for this hunt. This moving hunt originally aired on the RMEF Team Elk television show.
Permanently protecting even the tiniest slivers of elk country pays big dividends. That's exactly the case in south-central Colorado. The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation worked with a willing seller also an RMEF member to finalize what's called the Middle Creek Project.
Though a mere 28 acres, the transaction improves access to eighty five hundred acres of public land for hunters, anglers and others to access and enjoy. It connects U.S. Forest Service land to the west with Bureau of Land Management land to the east.
The property sits at eighty six hundred feet elevation at the northern end of the San luis Valley and features what you would expect to find in Colorado's high country, prime wildlife habitat in the form of open grasslands, riparian meadows, aspen groves and mixed conifer stands that lead to peaks higher than 11,000 ft on adjacent public land.
It is here you will find elk, bighorn sheep, black bear, trout and other bird and animal life. Opening and improving public access lies at the heart of RMEF's conservation mission.
Over 100 years of cherished hunting stories and memories that have literally been the bonds of the Ellis family all took place on this awe inspiring ground in Eastern Oregon. In the late 1800’s Sam and Ida Walker settled this land to begin their family, never knowing the legacy that they would be leaving behind. This has been the ground that many hunters trekked across for their first and some for their last hunt. Those that have passed are still fondly remembered today. A monster bull elk is proudly on display in the old farmhouse, taken by avid huntress, and daughter of the Walkers, Verna Gilliland. Her husband Paul’s old hunting license from 1911 can be found on the office wall today. At the time, Paul was a mere 21 years old.
“Experience what we have known for three generations…over 33,000 acres of diverse and challenging hunting terrain, picturesquely framed by the foothills of the Blue Mountains.” Ellis Family Hunting Ranches Website
The love of the outdoors and continuation of the time honored hunting tradition is being shared by the Ellis family as it has been so for over three generations, this time with Jacob, his best friend Chase and Jacob’s father Keith. Both Jacob and Chase are exceptional 12 year old young men, both have a love of the outdoors and spirit of the hunt within each of them. This was the perfect place for them to share together in the experience of Jacob’s very first elk hunt. This hunt was a special first for another reason as well, not only was this Jacob’s first elk hunt, but he would be the first in his household to hunt elk, ever. Stay tuned to watch the time honored tradition of elk hunting be passed down from the Ellis family to the Taylor family, extending the legacy of the land and her grace for us all to enjoy. This hunt originally aired on RMEF's Team Elk Television Show.
Kristy Titus shares how hunters are the first crusaders in conservation. This is our legacy. Let's share it.
Elk Network Goes Live
MISSOULA, Mont.—The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation’s new digital media platform, the Elk Network, is now live online and available for use.
“Our goal for this new generation of media is to serve as an informational resource for as many people as possible regarding all things elk, elk country and elk hunting,” said Steve Decker, RMEF vice president of Marketing. “We have worked hard to create a user-friendly platform that is highly visual and features regularly updated content.”
The Elk Network features a homepage where the latest content is posted at the top and the user can scroll, similar to familiar social media pages, to find additional content.
From there, The Elk Network includes nine distinct channels:
- Bugle TV
Full Team Elk episodes from past seasons, Randy Newberg-Hunter, Into High Country with Jason Matzinger and more
- The Hunt
Pertaining to everything before, during and after a hunt
- Carnivore’s Kitchen
Great wild game recipes and videos that show how to turn harvest into food & users can also submit their favorite recipes
- Elk Facts
Biology, terminology, behavior, vocalizations, current and historic range, and habitat of elk
- Gear 101
Latest and greatest products, gear hacks and buyer’s guides to choose the right gear
- Hunting Is Conservation
Facts, figures, videos and infographics that highlight the vital link between hunting and conservation
- RMEF @ Work
RMEF’s on-the-ground land protection, public access, habitat stewardship, elk restoration, hunting heritage and other conservation work
- From the Field
Users submit their videos, photos and hunting stories about their time afield
- Issues & Advocacy
RMEF stances regarding topics dealing with elk country and hunting heritage
“We believe this is an invaluable resource that will only grow in popularity and use as we continually add more highly visual, consumable content to it. Users no longer have to scour the Internet to find what they are looking for.” added Decker.
Late season elk hunting can be a huge challenge. The elk are often times found in large herds of 100 or more. The mature bulls have peeled away from the herds and are huddled up recovering from the rut. When you find a legal bull, they are often buried amongst the many eyes of cows and calves making a stalk difficult to impossible.
That is exactly what Erin Cox of Browning Ammunition and I experienced on our Colorado elk hunt with RMEF’s Team Elk. Hundreds of elk and only a few legal bull elk- all buried in the middle of the massive herd and no way to get within shooting range.
My motto is always, if you can’t get close enough to the elk, get the elk to come to you- which is exactly what happened on Erin’s hunt. A few cow, calf herd calls and a stampede of elk came off the mountain a mere 20 yards from us. Then a couple days later, I managed to call two more bulls away from the massive herd, one being a legal bull. Who says you can’t call elk in the end of October?
Be sure to watch RMEF’s Team Elk to watch the great stampede and Erin’s perfect shot on her first bull elk.
The first time you hear a bull elk bugle is a moment that you never forget. For me, I was 13 years old when my dad used his old school bugle and rubber band cow call to lure in a screaming 5x5 bull elk on public land in Idaho. That moment changed my life but it wasn’t until I was in my early twenties did I learn to call elk.
Having the ability to call elk- speak their language and really talk to them is one of the most remarkable experiences you can have as an outdoorsman. Showcasing that ability is what led me to my muzzle loader elk hunt in New Mexico. In 2012, 2013 and 2014, I placed second and third in the world at the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation World Elk Calling Championships. One of the prizes that I won, a brand new Traditions 50 Cal Muzzle loader rifle.
The perfect way to celebrate elk and elk hunting was to make my first muzzle loader hunt for elk on public land with Team Elk. Stay tuned for RMEF’s Team Elk to watch this incredible hunt unfold.
There is nothing brighter than the smile of a child on their first elk hunt. This is their moment; an opportunity that they have dreamed about their entire short lives. This held especially true on a New Mexico elk hunt with Lee Kenneke. At 12 years young, Lee is quite the accomplished Jr. hunting guide at the Express UU Bar Ranch.
His ability to quickly spot elk in any terrain, is uncanny. The kid has an eye for all types of big game. He has literally been hunting all 12 years of his life and most certainly has more experience than most adult hunters when it comes to elk hunting.
The opportunity for Lee to hunt the Express UU Bar was provided by the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, for within Lee, they saw the future of elk hunting, a steward of the land and wildlife that calls it home. Lee grew up on the ranch but no one in his family has had the special opportunity to hunt the bulls that call it home, until him.
Lee’s pursuit for a bull elk was a special one- he was looking for the hard to find management bull. Any sort of clean 6x6 or 5x5 would not do- the bull had to be of a mature age with an antler malformation. This required looking over hundreds of bulls. This type of selective hunt has made Lee the expert that he is at a young age. To be able to look over a herd of elk and age estimate and identify special characteristics on antlers has young Lee on top of his game.
One thing is for sure, we had a blast with a little competitive antler hunting as well. The two of us had a blast finding sheds and comparing size.
Stay tuned for RMEF’s Team Elk television show to see the special moments that took place on this hunt for Lee’s first bull elk.
Country Music Star Tracy Lawrence hunts Montana and has a chance to escape the busy life of celebrity and the road. Airing on the Outdoor Channel Saturday August 27th at 7:00PM and Sunday August 28th 4:30PM EST.
Travis Hall and Ryan Godderidge of Browning Firearms hunt New Mexico during the rut and discuss why the RMEF is so vital to conservation. Airing on the Outdoor Channel Saturday August 20th at 7:00pm and Sunday August 21st at 4:30pm EST.
NEW from RMEF's Team Elk Season 6 Airing Now- Yeti's Ben O'Brien hunts late season in Colorado with a last minute chance to fill his freezer for the winter. Airing on the Outdoor Channel- Saturday 7:00PM, Sunday 4:30PM EST.
Lorenzo Sartini hunts New Mexico with a bow and shows how his company goHUNT.com can help hunters find success while chasing western big game. Airing on the Outdoor Channel Saturday's at 7:00PM and Sunday at 4:30PM EST.
Cole Hoefle and Nate Poetzl hunt Montana during the peak of the rut and find success on a giant Montana bull. Airing on the Outdoor Channel Saturday at 3:00AM & 7:00PM, Sunday at 4:30PM EST.
Seth Compton hunts Utah during the rut with his father, RMEF Life Member Tim Compton. Airing on the Outdoor Channel Saturday at 3:00AM & 7:00PM, Sunday at 4:30PM EST.
Country Music Star Mark Wills hunts New Mexico during the muzzleloader season with Jared Wire from Cabela’s. Airing on the Outdoor Channel Saturday at 3:00AM & 7:00PM, Sunday at 4:30PM EST.
Steve Anderson and Ray Basta hunt DIY style in their home state of Montana. Airing on the Outdoor Channel Saturday at 3:00AM & 7:00PM, Sunday at 4:30PM EST.
Season 6 Airing Now- This week on RMEF's Team Elk, Eclipsed, Episode 10, Team Elk Host Brandon Bates returns to Montana with friend Scott Chester and tries to overcome a problematic moon cycle. Airing on the Outdoor Channel- Tuesday 4:30PM & 11:30PM, Thursday 10:30PM, Sunday 11:00PM EST.