Arriving in Benezette Pa and meeting up with Willard at 5:30 am Wednesday morning I was excited about the possibilities that this years elk rut held. Driving up Winslow Hill in the predawn darkness we passed a group of elk watchers gathered along the road looking at some elk faintly visible through the foggy darkness. A quick look with binoculars revealed only cows so we continued to where Willard had encountered action the evening before.
Nearby bugling could be heard as we readied our photo gear and walked to a food plot where a large herd bull was watching over a band of cows and calves with a couple of raghorns nearby.
The elk left the food plots while it was still too dark for good photography. As the morning wore on we followed the bugling and located the elk activity deep in the woods.
At least two large herd bulls were present as well as a number of lesser bulls. The morning activity consisted of the herd bulls running off all challengers and on occasion attempting to intimidate each other while at other times laying down to catch a moments rest.
The incident pictured here occurred when Willard & I decided to leave by way of an old railroad bed and met this mature herd bull coming our way. After seeing us he continued to walk towards us until he was only a few yards away before veering off the path. Passing closely to our right he headed towards the bugles of a satellite bull crashing through the brush as he attempted to steal a cow or two out of the big guy’s harem.
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