Elk Hunting: Do It Suppressed
Of the countless hunting seasons and types of game meat, elk are among the most challenging. Filling an elk tag means scouting and familiarizing yourself with the area you plan to hunt, as well as getting yourself in shape for hiking and glassing the hills and valleys in search of a shooter bull or cow. Then, you need to be capable of packing the head and meat out, which can be an incredible challenge on its own. None of that matters if you don’t make the shot, though, and making the shot depends on various factors.
Did you know hunting elk suppressed can increase your elk season success exponentially? We’re going to explain why — and which suppressors might be best for the coming season.
Why hunt elk suppressed?
Whether you’re alone or hunting with a partner — the latter of which is quite helpful for packing out meat — using a suppressor makes it easier to hear what’s going on. This means you can hear the whispers or directions of a hunting partner and also make out the near-silent noises of wildlife around you without worrying about protecting your ears from a large-caliber shot being fired. It also reduces the auditory footprint you leave in an area which is both polite to other hunters and helpful if you miss and have to find another elk. A suppressed shot isn’t silent, but it is a great deal quieter than one that’s fired without a suppressor.
In addition, you’ll find a suppressed rifle will have somewhat reduced felt recoil. This makes greater accuracy possible and can lead to faster, more precise follow-up shots when needed. Having an edge on felt recoil mitigation can make a significant difference when you need to make a fast, accurate shot with a big-bore rifle.
How do you elk hunt suppressed?
You might be thinking it could be awkward to elk hunt carrying a rifle with a suppressor on it, and in some cases you might be correct. However, there are suppressors designed for this purpose.
SilencerCo Harvester Evo
The Harvester Evo is designed for hunting and compatible with calibers between 223 Remington — which you wouldn’t be using on elk — up to 300 Win Mag, which you’re quite likely to use on elk.
The Harvester Evo is made with a shorter profile for reduced risk of snagging and a lighter weight and overall size so it doesn’t add unnecessary bulk to your setup. Also, it’s rated for barrels down to 16 inches in length chambered in 308 Win or 20 inches for 300 Win Mag, meaning it’s going to work just fine with your more compact mountain rifle.
As for mounting, the Harvester Evo works with all SilencerCo mounts such as the Bravo ASR, Bravo Direct Thread Mounts, and ASR muzzle brakes and flash hiders.
SilencerCo Omega 36M
Another great option for elk hunting is the Omega 36M. It’s compatible with a broad range of barrel lengths and calibers but, most importantly, it’s rated for 300 Win Mag and 338 Lapua Magnum. And because it’s also great for smaller calibers like 223 Remington — with down to a 10-inch barrel — it’s the perfect option if you need a versatile suppressor you can move from gun to gun.
The Omega 36M is also a two-piece modular suppressor so you can shorten it as needed, for an even more portable suppressed hunting rifle.
What do you need to elk hunt suppressed?
Aside from having a compatible rifle and suppressor, it’s a good idea to put whatever tool(s) your suppressor came with in your pack. Along that same train of thought it doesn’t hurt to throw a thread protector for the barrel in, just in case you have to take the suppressor off. Is it likely? No, but being prepared is more than half the battle when it comes to mountainous and backcountry hunts.
When you’re elk hunting, you’re likely to already have gloves with you but do take a moment to make sure you have some gloves appropriate for checking that the suppressor is firmly in place if it’s potentially hot.
Finally, get a suppressor cover. A good cover reduces mirage, protects the exterior of the suppressor from scrapes against trees and branches, and can provide some degree of protection from the elements.
Is it legal to elk hunt with a suppressor?
It’s legal to elk hunt with a suppressor in most states. Check the regulations for the state and county you’ll be hunting in to check for yourself before going hunting with a suppressed rifle.
Do I have to get a suppressor to elk hunt?
No, you don’t have to get a suppressor to hunt elk, but it’s a good choice. Aside from the benefits of hearing protection and easier follow-up shots, there’s the possibility that you could also shoot a predator without blowing the hunt. That’s right, if you spot a coyote or other in-season predator during your hunt, you’d be far more likely to be able to shoot it without worrying about potentially scaring off nearby elk. You might be surprised how often the issue of whether or not to shoot to shoot a predator comes up, and you don’t want to scare the target animal away.
Elk hunting with a suppressed rifle is a fantastic way to improve your hunt. Check out our full line of suppressors to find the ideal model for your rifle and the terrain on which you hunt.