Pennsylvania Game News - July 2017 - 5
Trophy Rack Lodge
The opening day of Pennsylvania's elk season accounts for much of the annual harvest, and it
was good to the hunters above in 2016. From left to right with their opening-day harvests, Gary
Fritz, of St. Marys, took his 6-by-6 bull in Elk County. Mike Miller, of Laceyville, harvested his
fine cow in Elk County. And Stephen Winter, of Perkasie, took his 8-by-9 in Clearfield County.
Coming off a relatively mild winter,
with recent annual counts that place Pennsylvania's elk herd between 800 to 1,000
animals, exceptional hunting is expected
again this fall.
Drought and, to some degree, mast
production, will influence where elk will
be during the season. But wherever ample
food and nearby cover can be found on
the elk range, there's always a possibility
elk will be there.
Elk primarily are grazers, and herbaceous openings are worth covering in the
hunt. Young forestland is a close second.
When you find elk using these areas just
before the season, it's usually a good bet
to start your season there.
"The best advice I can offer here is that
hunters have to find the elk and hunt them
where they are," Banfield noted. "They
are not evenly distributed like deer, and
sitting in a tree stand all day waiting for
an elk to wander by is generally a poor
approach, unless you've seen them in the
If you'd like to hunt elk unguided,
Banfield recommends checking with
private landowners. Some, he said, don't
allow guided hunters, but do allow do-ityourself hunters. Knocking on doors is