Paul Brown of Blandon with the bull elk he took in Pennsylvania in 2014. It cored 400 3/8. He won the Keystone Elk Country Alliance raffle, called the “working man’s tag,” to get his bull.
The voice on the other end of the line was incredulous.
I’d called the press office of an out-of-state wildlife agency, asking to speak to a biologist. I was looking for information on archery deer seasons, namely harvest statistics.
“Archery deer? In August?” the woman asked.
Sportsmen will understand. Whether it’s applying for doe licenses here in Pennsylvania or trying to get a license to hunt some other species out of state, the time to be asking questions and applying is long before the first frost makes it feel like hunting season.
So it is that it’s time to be thinking about elk.
The Keystone Elk Country Alliance is holding its annual Elk Expo on Aug. 20-21. Full details can be found here.
A highlight of the event, of course, will be the awarding of elk hunting licenses.
The Pennsylvania Game Commission will draw names and hand out 124 elk licenses, 25 good for the taking of a bull, 99 for the taking of a cow. That’s set for 1 p.m. on Saturday.
The Alliance, meanwhile, will draw one name from among those who purchased a raffle ticket. It’s set for 1 p.m. on Sunday.
That person will get a license to take a bull, and have all of September and October – the peak of the rut and bugling season – to do it. That’s 57 days in all. If the winner hasn’t killed an elk by then, they can also participate in the state’s regular six-day season set to run from Oct. 31-Nov. 5.
The last two hunters drawn for the Alliance tag each harvested bulls with more than 400 inches of antler.
This year’s winner will again be guided for six days by Elk County Outfitters. That includes meals and lodging. The winner also gets a shoulder mount of their bull and the opportunity to have the hunt filmed for national TV by the film crew at TomBob Outdoors.
Raffle tickets are still available by clicking here. They’re $25 each or six for $100. They can also be purchased in person at the Expo until 11 a.m. on Aug. 21.