Elk season still might be a few months away, but it is not too early to start thinking and planning your hunt. One thing that every hunter should be aware of is proper shot placement.
After spending your hard earned money, planning, scouting and more for what might be a hunt of a lifetime, you don’t want to blow it with a bad shot.
Elkhunting.org has some great advice for proper shot placement on elk.
The best bowshot that a hunter can take on an elk is when it’s standing broadside. The amount of penetration required to hit a vital organ is minimal when an elk is standing broadside. This shot placement is also the best when try to hit both lungs in one shot which would result in the collapses of both lungs and a much quicker death. You’ll need to make sure that you adjust for elevation before you take your broadside shot. You can find the best spot by following up the back of the front leg 1/3 to 1/2 up the chest cavity of the elk. By using that method you’ll find that your arrow is now aimed at the center of both lungs and the top of the heart. If the elk happens to have its front legs spread apart then simply just follow up the upside down v-shape of the legs 1/2 to 1/3 up to the chest.
The quartering away shot isn’t ideal for larger game such as elk due to the positioning of their intestinal tracts and that their girth is broader than small game such as deer. The positioning of an elk’s intestinal tracts will degrade arrow penetration and while it may mortality wounded it can suffer for days and make recovery impossible. Sometimes the contents of an elk’s stomach can decrease the arrow’s energy and even prevent the arrow from reaching any vital organs.
If you do attempt to use this type of shot placement on an elk it’s important that you wait for the best possible quartering away shot. The best spot to place your razor tipped arrow will be in line with the far front leg about one-third to one-half up the elk’s body cavity. The bow hunter needs to try and take shot that will penetrate both lungs and the heart while passing through as little intestines as possible. The actual location where you attempt your shot will be different each time and depend which way the animal is quartering away. Never take a quartering away shot if you are farther than your effective range