Charging Bull Elk Comes Within Inches of Goring a Shocked Bowhunter

Sometimes a cow call works too good. In a video posted by the Hunter Nation Instagram account and credited to a user called @kasenb.3, a man is seen drawing his compound bow as a bull elk comes rushing in at full tilt straight toward him. Before the hunter can get a shot off, though, the charging elk is just inches from his face. See it for yourself below.

The video starts with the elk running fast down a well established trail. As it gets closer, the hunter lets out a single cow call. But the bull never stops or even slows its pace. At the last second, the hunter backs into an aspen tree and narrowly avoids what could have been a painful goring from the bull’s sizable antlers. Then the man turns to the camera with a look of utter shock on his face, and the short clip cuts out.

It’s not clear where or when the close call took place, but Instagram users provided plenty of commentary in the thread below the post. “Been there done that twice in southern Oregon coastal region,” one person said. “[I’d] pull out my side arm, because I just watched a video of one of these killing a cow by stabbing it in her heart,” offered another.

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While the hunter in this video appears to have escaped without injury, that’s not always the case when deer or elk strike back. In 2020, a 66-year-old Oregon man died tragically after a wounded bull elk he’d shot the night before got up and gored him in the neck as he tried to finish it off with his bow. In October 2019, a hunter in Arkansas was gored and killed by a whitetail buck he’d previously shot with his rifle. In 2017, a 10-point buck with rabies gored a man’s face in Upstate New York.

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All deer species are unpredictable during the rut, but bull elk can be particularly aggressive. The National Park Service advises people who “come into an area with an aggressive elk that is following you or approaching you” to “back away slowly.”

This post was modified on 2023-10-05 15:12:08

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