Hunting elk with bow and arrow can sometimes lead to up-close and personal encounters. That is especially true if you’re sneaking up on bulls and waiting until the last minute before calling. A combination of adequate cover and the right gear can render an experienced hunter nearly invisible, and bulls in the rut may be so distracted that they can walk right over you without noticing. After all, they have to defend their harem from rival bulls, not a strange-looking bush with a funny hat.

Below are nine of the closest elk encounters you will ever see online. We’re sure that there are more out there. Have you been in a close-range elk hunt? Share your story in the comments below.

1. Female bowhunter faces off with elk at 10 yards

2. New Mexico bull elk at 3 yards

3. There’s an elk right below us!

https://youtu.be/LVG6Ae2jOM8

4. POV of a 12-yard shot

5. Colorado elk hunt at 5 yards

6. Right in front of you

7. The closest we’ve seen

8. Elk bugling at 7 yards

9. A 4-yard encounter with a cow elk

Image screenshot of video by RealtreeOutdoors on YouTube

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  • Gary

    I killed a Big spike at 20 feet…First elk…couldn’t believe it…

  • Jacob

    Sept. 28 2013 I harvested my first bull elk a 5 x 6 at 7 yards. Awsome experience.

    Jacob in idaho.