Elk Hunting Over Wallows

All trail cam photos submitted by Larry

All trail cam photos submitted by Larry

All trail cam photos submitted by Larry
Notice antlers entering, top left of photo.
In the wallow
Two muddy bulls fighting.

My hunting buddy and I argue a lot over when is the best time to hunt over wallows. The obvious answer seems to be when it is hot, and not a lot of water available. He says that during the rut, the bulls do not use the wallows in his experience.


I have watched a lot of videos with bulls being harvested during the rut and a significant number of them are covered with mud. My guess is that they are using the wallows to establish territory or keep the bugs off.

Are there any other theories as to why they would use the wallows during the rut and any tricks that could be used when it is closer to the rut.
We in Oregon, seem to have our bow season end just as the rut is scheduled to begin.
Russ

Comments for Elk Hunting Over Wallows

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Jul 12, 2013
Quick
by: Larry

You bring up an interesting topic. Back before cameras were outlawed in MT during the season. (You can still use the cameras but they must be out of the field the day before the season opens) Back then I would see high activity at my wallow sites between Aug 20th or so up until about Sept 5th. It seemed to drop off significantly for some reason with no pictures for days or weeks after early September. I know bulls are still hitting mud some where but not at my sites because the bulls I would see throughout September and October are covered in mud. I hunt from a tree over a wallow opening weekend, that's it. I have never killed a bull from a tree but keep thinking some day the stars will align. Also, by adding cow urine to a strategically placed log near the wallow you can get some great pics of them smelling it. Plus I think it keeps them coming back. You can also make a wallow that they will quickly start hitting if they are around. You will need a shovel some muck boots and the right seep. The cow urine brings them right in and they will keep using it till about Sept 5th. Then like ghosts they disappear. I like the gel cow in heat products they last longer.

PS. I know what you mean about that stinky bull next to the clean cow. :) He was a stinky mud covered mess.

Jul 12, 2013
Elk Hunting Over Wallows
by: Dave, ElkHuntingTips.net

They definitely wallow during the rut. They don't just do it to keep off flies and to cool off. They often pee in it and then roll in it, so they get their own rutty smell all over themselves. I have seen them do it without peeing in it.

They don't just do it where there isn't a lot of water, either. They like a spot that is more like a large puddle than a stream. They want their smell to stay there, not get washed down the creek. Seeps and springs are often trampled up and wallowed in to make the perfect stink-me-up-and-leave-my-stink-behind hole.

I hate skinning a nasty old bull with dried mud all over him. You have to be careful not to get the nasty, dusty caked on dirt on the meat! I killed a 6 point on Labor Day caked with dried mud once and a buddy (Larry, above) killed one all caked up last year on opening day of rifle season (late October). We put him in my rig with my cow elk. I told him not to let his nasty bull touch my clean cow!

They can come to a wallow at any time of day or night. That's the problem with hunting wallows. They do it when they get the urge!

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