Can You Hunt Elk in Kentucky



Yes, elk may be hunted in Kentucky. Elk hunting season generally opens in early September and extends through late December. A valid Kentucky hunting license is required for all hunters, and a special elk permit is also required for anyone wishing to hunt elk within the state.

  • Scout out potential areas where elk might be living
  • This includes looking for signs of elk activity, such as tracks, droppings, and rubs on trees
  • Set up a base camp in an area that is close to where you believe the elk are living
  • Use calls and decoys to attract the attention of nearby elk
  • Try to mimic the sounds that they would make in nature, such as bugling or cow calls
  • Once an elk is within range, take a shot using a high-powered rifle or bow and arrow
  • Make sure to aim for a vital spot, such as the heart or lungs, for a quick and humane kill
  • Field dress the elk carcass as soon as possible after making the kill
  • This involves removing the innards from the animal so that it can be properly preserved for eating later on

Elk Hunting Kentucky?! Eastmans’ Hunting TV

How Much Does It Cost to Hunt Elk in Kentucky?

In Kentucky, the cost of hunting elk will vary depending on several factors. These include the type of hunt (i.e. do-it-yourself, outfitted), the location, and the time of year. For example, a do-it-yourself hunt during the early season may cost around $1,500, while an outfitted hunt during peak rut can run upwards of $5,000.

The biggest factor in determining the cost of an elk hunt is whether you go DIY or hire an outfitter. If you go the DIY route, you’ll have to pay for your own lodging and food, as well as any necessary permits and licenses. You’ll also need to factor in the cost of gas and travel expenses to get to and from your hunting grounds.

Depending on how far away you live from Kentucky (and whether you fly or drive), this could add up quickly. If you decide to hire an outfitter, they will typically take care of all these details for you – although it will come at a higher price tag. In addition to paying for their services, you’ll also need to factor in things like tips for guides and cooks, as well as gratuities for porters if you use them.

Again, these costs can add up quickly but can ultimately save you a lot of time (and headache) in planning your trip. Ultimately, the cost of hunting elk in Kentucky will depend on a number of factors – but it’s safe to say that it is not a cheap endeavor! If done right however, it can be an incredibly rewarding experience that will provide memories (and trophy animals) that last a lifetime.

Where Can I Hunt Elk in Kentucky?

In Kentucky, elk can be found in several counties in the southeastern and eastern parts of the state. The best places to hunt elk are in the Daniel Boone National Forest and the Red River Gorge Geological Area.

Is There Public Land to Hunt Elk in Kentucky?

There is public land to hunt elk in Kentucky. The Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources (KDFWR) controls most of the state’s wildlife management areas (WMAs), which are open to the public for hunting, fishing, and other outdoor recreation activities. KDFWR also leases some private land for public hunting.

Elk can be found on several WMAs in eastern Kentucky, including Black Mountain WMA, Daniel Boone National Forest, Grayson Lake WMA, Levi Jackson Wilderness Road State Park, Pound Gap WMA, and Stonecoal Lake WMA. A valid Kentucky hunting license is required to hunt on any of these WMAs. In addition to the WMAs listed above, KDFWR has leased nearly 14,000 acres of private land across the state for public hunting.

These lands are enrolled in the Voluntary Public Access – Habitat Incentives Program (VPA-HIP) and are marked with purple paint on posts or trees at road intersections and along field edges. VPA-HIP offers financial incentives to landowners who enroll their property in this program and allow public hunting access. To find out more about where to hunt elk in Kentucky, visit the KDFWR website or contact a local wildlife biologist.

How Many Elk Tags are Given Out in Kentucky?

The number of elk tags given out in Kentucky varies from year to year. In 2018, a total of 1,750 elk tags were available for hunters. The number of tags is determined by the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources (KDFWR) based on several factors, including the size of the elk herd, reproductive rates, and hunter success rates.

Approximately half of the elk tags are allocated through a random drawing process. The other half are distributed through an auction/raffle system. KDFWR also offers a limited number of bonus points that can be used to increase your chances of being drawn for a tag in future years.

Can You Hunt Elk in Kentucky


Elk Hunting in Kentucky Prices

If you’re looking to hunt elk in Kentucky, you’ll need to be aware of the various prices associated with the process. Here’s a breakdown of what you can expect to pay: -A non-refundable application fee for each permit: $10-$30

-Permit fees if successful in the lottery drawing: $50 (youth and seniors), $100 (adults) -Elk hunting license: $37 (residents), $55 (non-residents) -Harvest record/report fee: $5

Now that you know the basic fees involved in elk hunting in Kentucky, you can start planning your trip. Keep in mind that these are just the basics – additional costs may include things like travel, lodging, equipment, and more. But with a little planning and preparation, you can have a great time hunting elk in Kentucky without breaking the bank.


Yes, you can hunt elk in Kentucky. The state has a healthy population of elk and offers several different hunting opportunities. If you’re looking for a challenging hunt, Kentucky is a great place to start.


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