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Deer Elk

Prepping a Girl for her First Elk Hunt: Rifle and Ammo Selection

by Conrad Evarts   |  August 2nd, 2011 4

This blog fits into the series: “Prepping a Girl for her First Elk Hunt”.

Alyssa with her other CZ USA youth rifle.

I hunted as a kid, but the education piece was handled pretty casually. When it came time for me to prepare my daughter for her first elk hunt here in Montana I wanted to do it right. We don’t know what we don’t know. I decided to go out and find out what I didn’t know for all of us who wanted to do this as effectively as possible. Alyssa and I are learning a great deal together and hopefully you are as well. Feel free to put ideas in the comments below.

Alyssa turns 13 in a couple weeks. She’s small for a girl her age, so we decided to go with a youth model of the CZ 550 in .308.

She is a naturally adept shooter, but I wanted her to build her confidence with the single set trigger. I don’t have one on any of my rifles, but I’ve used them and seen in the field what can be done when a hunter has time and the proper position to use the single set trigger. I’m looking forward to getting her to the range with the combination of the single set trigger and the low recoil Fusion Ammunition. I feel that using low recoil ammunition with a young and small hunter will diminish the development of bad habits.  I think she will be pleasantly surprised and be able to shoot more as she becomes comfortable with the new rifle.

Alyssa after finishing her first backpacking trip with papa. Imagine what she'll look like after an elk hunt.

I’m pretty sure we won’t be charged by an elk. But in this situation I wanted the Mauser style extractor. Alyssa is a very enthusiastic hunter, but she also loves animals very much. If she needs to take a follow up shot on her spike or cow, I want to know that it is available. With a young hunter, in my opinion especially a girl, the idea of wounding and losing and animal could sour them long term.

Dave Tobel manages the gun counter at Capital Sports and spent a little time answering a few of Alyssa’s questions.

Yes, I did make her do my job again in this video:


  • Sherrill Neese

    Ok ok… I need to get adopted. ;-)

  • Sherrill Neese

    Outstanding interview. Alyssa saves the day as usual. :-)

    Hats off to Dave Tobel for presenting such excellent information.

  • Ron

    Conrad, I think you are going to have a taxidermy bill on your hands this fall. Good luck on the hunt.

  • donna boddington

    Conrad! this is great You guys make a great team and yes you will have a taxidermy bill on your hands but heck it's better than paying for therapy!

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