Best Arrows For Elk Hunting – 2021 Round-up

| Last Updated June 1, 2021

Elks are one of the most sought-after big game. You might not be the only one waiting for the season to start so you can take out your bow and head towards your prey. But do you know that for being successful, you need the advantage of reliable gear?

While you may think that your bow is the most important piece of your hunting gear, we think otherwise. It is the arrow that makes physical contact with your target. So, if you are planning to drop an elk, you need to be very serious about choosing, building, and maintaining your arrows. 

If we have piqued your interest, you might also be interested in learning about the best arrows for elk hunting. In this article, we have compiled a list of the arrows we think are the best for this purpose. Read on to learn more!

Comparison of the Best Arrows for Elk Hunting

  • Balanced for better performance and accuracy
  • Comes with a straightness tolerance of .003
  • Fletched in the factory with 2-inch Raptor vanes
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  • Best for the Money
  • Made from high-quality carbon for durability
  • Comes with a straightness tolerance of .005 inches
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  • Made from high-quality carbon for longevity
  • Made with a straightness tolerance of .001 inches
  • You get 12 arrows included in the package
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  • Equipped with launchpad precision nocks
  • Laser checked for straightness tolerance of .0025 inches
  • High-tech carbon materials used in construction
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What Makes an Arrow Great for Elk Hunting?

Elk hunting is one thrilling yet frustrating pastime. Since they are very fast, the overall success rate is quite low. If you want to successfully harvest an elk, you have to work patiently to earn the reward.

The primary weapons used for elk hunting are rifles and arrows. Here is why it is a better choice for hunting elks.

Hunting With an Arrow is Thrilling and Challenging

Hunting elk with a rifle is fairly easy. You can easily aim from long distances and shoot without worry. Bowhunting, on the other hand, is actually quite challenging. You cannot fire an arrow from long distances. You need to be close to your target. And in case of elks, you have to do it stealthily, so it does not pounce away. So an arrow is a great way to enjoy a truly challenging elk hunting experience.

Arrows Are More Economical

Hunting requires a lot of practice. You need to zero in your weapons, practice your aim, and keep practicing to make it better. If you decide to do it with arrows, you have an economic advantage over rifles. Since recovering them is quite easy, you can use the same arrows again and again. There is no need to buy new ones every time you set out to hunt elks.

Hunting With an Arrow Presents More Scope for Practice

If you are planning to hunt elks with an arrow, you should know that it requires a lot of practice. Contrary to rifle shooting, bow hunting does not require special target ranges. You can set up in your backyard or any other private area that is approximately 50 yards long.

Can Any Arrow Be Used For Elk Hunting?

All arrows may look similar, but the similarities end with aesthetics. When it comes to performance, elk hunting arrows don’t deliver a cookie-cutter performance. Arrows vary widely from brand to brand and even batch to batch. 

You cannot expect a target shooting an arrow to kill an elk. The kind of arrow you choose dictates your performance. Different arrows boast different materials, spines, lengths, and shaft patterns. You need to decide on these parameters to pick-up a suitable combination, one that is deadly for elks yet comfortable for you. 

Review of the Best Arrows For Elk Hunting 

For professional hunters, elk hunting is not just a recreational activity. It is a serious business that they enjoy very much. They know it requires proper preparation. The perfect conditions, situation, and reliable piece of gear greatly improve their chances of success. 

If you also want to be successful, we suggest you invest in getting good-quality gear to start with. Here is a detailed review of some of the best arrows for elk hunting to point you in the right direction. 

Best Overall:
Gold Tip Hunter XT HXT340A2

Gold Tip Hunter XT Arrows with 2-Inch Raptor Vanes (1-Dozen), Color May Vary


  • Shaft straightness is remarkable
  • Brand boasts amazing quality control
  • Medium weight does not require much draw weight
  • Versatile product delivers a solid all-round performance
  • Well-balanced design offers accurate and powerful shots


  • Not suitable to be used by the beginners
  • Pre-installed fletching needs a bit of readjustment

What Recent Buyers Report

These arrows have great customer feedback backing it up. Hunters have been using them to deliver the most accurate pass-through shots, yet they did not affect the performance and, for that matter, the fletching in any way. They remain true after many training cycles and last longer than any of their counterparts. That’s why more and more people are opting to purchase these as their choice of hunting arrows

Why it Stands Out to Us

We find these arrows to be a versatile product that can handle both hunting and target shooting applications. They are solid and reliable, so you can trust them to hit what you point them at. They are great for pass-through shots without sustaining any damage on the shaft or the fletching.

They feature a well-balanced design both in terms of weight and power. Made from carbon, they are very lightweight yet sturdy. They will get the job done for any type of hunter regardless of their individual needs. They are designed to be shatter-proof, so you can use them a bit roughly.

Bottom Line

To sum up, if you are looking for a complete package of durability, reliability, and quantity, you don't need to look any further than this. These are delivered as a pack of twelve arrows. You can really put them to great use without any fear of damage. The multipurpose arrows will surely drop an elk for you without breaking a sweat. 

Best for the Money:
Easton Carbon Aftermath 340

Easton Carbon Aftermath 340 Raw Shafts Doz


  • Feature a reduced diameter carbon shaft
  • Lightweight arrows fly with higher velocities
  • ST RPS inserts and orange H nocks included
  • High strength construction can handle rough handling
  • +/-.005 inches straightness tolerance ensures accuracy


  • Accessories are hard to find
  • Installing fletching may drive up the cost

What Recent Buyers Report

Buyers say that these arrows are the best value for the quality you get. They are very suitable for hunting purposes. Lightweight and durable, users really like them for their consistency. Some reported that they got the same consistent results as back when they were new. 

Why it Stands Out to Us

Unlike many other products available on the markets, these do not boast a multipurpose usage. Easton Carbon Aftermath 340 are solely designed for hunting purposes. With the lightweight carbon construction and a small diameter, they fly through the air at fast velocities and penetrate right where you need. 

Although the straightness tolerance is very low, having the shafts cut for a suitable length also improves their straightness. The high strength construction can hold its own against rough usage, which is good because arrows are meant to be used roughly. The quality is so good that you won’t find yourself complaining about it even after years of usage. 

Bottom Line

Carbon arrows are the most suitable ones for elk hunting. This product is supplied as a complete set, so you don’t have to worry about buying arrows individually. The maneuverability is great, with high-quality construction and lightweight design. Combine that with its straightness, and you have a solid performer to assist you in your exciting endeavor.

3. Easton Full Metal Jacket N

12 - Pk. Easton Full Metal Jacket N - Fused Carbon Shafts Gun Metal Black Finish, 400


  • Offer an easy target pull
  • Trusted by archery experts
  • Supplied as a set of twelve units
  • Come Pre-installed with a bright red X Nock
  • Metal Jacket reduces friction and air resistance


  • Lie on the heavier side of the weight spectrum

What Recent Buyers Report

The full metal jacket arrows from Easton are slowly but steadily becoming popular amongst bow hunters as well as field archers. By using these, buyers all around have experienced an increased level of performance. Bowhunters have reported a comparable performance regardless of using these with a compound bow, flatbow, longbow, or recurve bow

Why it Stands Out to Us

Although these arrows are versatile in their usage, they are specially designed for hunting purposes. The sleek, high-tech looking shaft is made to steer fixed-blade broadheads. The carbon core is covered in a 7075 alloy metal jacket. The combination offers reduced noise, increased speed, and deeper penetration. 

Despite the thick-walled carbon core, the diameter of the arrow is relatively small. The design displays a unique Hidden Insert Technology (HIT), which not only increases its strength but also helps align the broadheads automatically. 

You may think that the combined weight of the carbon core and metal jacket can cause distance and aiming issues. But remember, they are an Easton product that is known to strictly adhere to weight standards. 

Bottom Line

Easton has been a world-recognized leader in arrows and archery equipment since 1922. The Full Metal Jacket (FMJ) arrows are their relatively new product but are steadily gaining a reputation for being durable and reliable. They are a great choice for those who want a quieter, tougher, and more durable arrow.

4. Carbon Express Maxima RED 50752

Carbon Express Maxima RED Carbon Arrow Shaft with Dynamic Spine Control, 12-Pack


  • Supplied as a pack of 6 durable arrows
  • Equipped with launchpad precision nocks
  • Built to manage energy much better than the competition
  • Available in an assorted combination of black and red colors
  • Arrow flex to the middle of the shaft offers unprecedented accuracy


  • Beginners may face some difficulty maneuvering

What Recent Buyers Report

From what we have read so far, users really appreciate the degree of attention that manufacturers have paid in constructing their bow hunting arrows. They are designed for longevity and accuracy. People have been using the same set for years with the same consistent results every time. The look and feel are so incredible that they don’t want to try anything else. 

Why it Stands Out to Us

This is a decent set of carbon arrows that boasts all the features of precision. The build quality is high-class, which makes them durable enough for intensive games. It features a patented carbon material construction with cutting-edge technology that is hard to find in any other bow hunting gear. 

The manufacturer has also made use of the centralized weight technique to help keep the arrow focused on the target. The red zone regulates the arrow flex to achieve accurate and precise shots. So the black and red combination is not only there to look at; it is put there with a specified purpose of delivering accurate shots.

They are considered the fastest and the most accurate arrows as each unit is laser checked for straightness. Made from patented weaved carbon material, you are unlikely to find a sturdier arrow for elk hunting. 

Bottom Line

Maxima is one of the best-selling arrows that ranges from Carbon Express. And after looking at all the good features, you really cannot doubt it. They are purely designed for bow hunting. The features, build quality, and the technology used in its creation will certainly help you up to your game. If accuracy and sturdiness are what you are looking for, you must grab a pack of these before the season begins. 

Best Broadheads for Elk Hunting:
Ramcat Hydroshock Pivoting Broadheads

Ramcat Pivoting Broadheads (Hydroshock - 100 Grain)


  • Unique design can mimic a field tip flight
  • Boasts an incredible penetration capability
  • Designed with aircraft technology to improve accuracy
  • Equipped with divots to offer better control during flight
  • Expendable arrow has a sharp edge in front and back of all three blades


  • Blades are somewhat on the thinner side
  • Requires a heavier draw weight to be accurate

What Recent Buyers Report

People have been using them for several years and are satisfied with their performance. Buyers report that these fixed broadheads are more consistent and close to their field tips than any of the other units in the market. The flight accuracy is amazing at distant shots, and the arrows sustain minimum damage even after the roughest pass-through shot. 

Why it Stands Out to Us

Ramcat Hydroshock Pivoting Broadheads boasts one of the most aerodynamic designs ever made. The ferrule of this broadhead is larger than the expendable blades. Yet it features three separate airfoil lobes around it that allow wind to pass through and prevent air resistance from slowing it down.

The manufacturer claims that this arrow’s razor-sharp head is capable of penetrating the thickest hides. The design is pretty simple, with 0.032-inch stainless steel surfaces that can cut through anything. And if you fail at delivering a pass-through shot, the back edges are also sharp to facilitate easy removal.

The expendable broadhead is hybrid in functioning. The blades can expand by bending forward but become fixed once it is deployed. You should remember to check the smaller screws before shooting to ensure consistent deployment every single time. 

Bottom Line

If you want a solid performer to deliver accurate and reliable results, you should really look into purchasing this Ramcat broadhead. It is delivered as a pack of three, so you might actually get more value for its price. It is light enough to stay on target yet heavy enough to deliver a fatal shot. All in all, it is a unit that is surely worth every penny. 

Aspects to Consider Before Buying

If you want to land a successful shot, you have to be selective of what goes into your quiver. Not every arrow on the market is designed for elk hunting. You have to be very careful about what you choose. Here are some aspects that you should consider before buying suitable ones. 


We cannot stress this enough. If you want to experience an accurate and reliable performance, you should always purchase from a known and respected brand. Brands gain a reputation for the service they deliver. If people recommend a certain brand, it means that it has fulfilled their expectations so you can also trust them to fulfill yours. 


Quality arrows don’t come cheap. If you are serious about elk hunting, you should really stretch the budget to purchase some high-quality, reliable, and accurate units. Though you might find some that are lighter in the pocket, they might compromise your performance. 


Since quality arrows don’t come cheap, you should decide the quantity you need beforehand. You need to be able to make follow-up shots, which you won’t be able to do if you don’t have arrows to spare. But too many arrows mean extra burden for you to carry around. For elk hunting, the minimum number of arrows recommended is three.

Best Types of Arrows for Hunting Elk

Having the right arrows in your quiver is very important for elk hunting. Without a suitable one, your performance is likely to suffer, and you won’t be able to drop prey. Here’s a brief rundown of the best types of arrows for elk hunting. 

Carbon Arrows 

Carbon arrows are deemed to be the best for elk hunting. As the name suggests, they are made of carbon but can be molded to different spines. They are very durable and can withstand rough usage. But they are also not fixable. Once they are broken, they are done for. You can’t do anything about them. Also, they are the most expensive. 

Aluminum Arrows 

If you are planning to use a light bow, aluminum arrows are the best choice for elk hunting. They are hollow on the inside, so they are very light and flexible. Once bent, you can return them to their original shape. Being lightweight, they tend to be fast as well. You can find a good range in this category which is not too expensive. 

Wooden Arrows 

Wooden arrows are the traditional choice of bowhunters. Though they are stiff, they can be bent a bit. They are made to have matching spines and are covered in a lacquered finish. They have a feather fletching on one end and glue on the tip with no inserts. You can get them in various price ranges according to the quality of wood used in their making. They are also the easiest to break. 

Fiberglass Arrows

If you are interested in unconventional types of arrows for elk hunting, you may look into purchasing fiberglass ones. They are solid, stiff, and quite sturdy. They are easy to hurl towards your prey.


If you want to take down a big beefy elk this season, you need a reliable arrow in your quiver. We have closely analyzed and reviewed some of the best options available on the market for you to choose from. They are all solid performers that will not fail you if aimed accurately.

Remember, your success not only depends upon your gear but also on your skill. Even if you purchase one of the products recommended above, you will need to first practice with it to be more confident and comfortable when you are actually out drawing it at a possible target. 

People Also Ask

Bowhunting seasons are about to start, so you need to get your gear organized. The most important component of your gear is the arrows you are going to use for hunting elks. If you are a beginner, finding the right one will be a tough task. Here are some frequently asked questions to help address your queries and help you make the right choice. 

Where Can I Shoot an Elk With an Arrow?

As an elk hunter, it is your job to take responsible, ethical, and solid shots. You can either take a very lethal shot or go for a pass-through. The frontal shot or an accurate shot placed on the golden triangle is devastating and will ensure a quick death. If you place a pass-through shot accurately, the animal will go down within a hundred yards with a heavy blood trail so that you can find it easily. 

How Much Draw Weight is Needed to Kill an Elk?

As a general rule of bowhunting, the 50-pound draw weight is a must for dropping elk. Though this number might seem low, drawing a bow is not easy. If you are an absolute beginner, drawing even 40 pounds of weight requires effort. You should practice with lower weight and increase when you get better. 

What is the Difference Between 340 and 400 Arrows?

The numbers denote the measurement of the arrow stiffness, also known as the spine. The higher the number, the bendier they are. 340 arrows are much stronger than 400 ones because they are stiffer and can hold up much better. The latter are bendier, so they tend to change trajectory more than the former. 

How Many Grain Arrow For Elk?

Elks fall into the category of a big game. Professional hunters usually recommend an arrow of a minimum of 420 grains for hunting elks. Yet the bows manufactured these days are more efficient than they ever were. You can succeed even with a lower poundage bow. So you can also go for an arrow that is a little lighter than 420 pounds. 

Is 400 Grains Enough Arrow Weight For Elk Hunting?

The straightforward answer to this question is yes. Many experts these days recommend using an arrow of a minimum of 420 grains for elk hunting. Yet, many hunters have been successful with arrows that weigh a bit lower than this. They are especially more useful when you pair them with a sharp broadhead.

How Heavy of an Arrow For Elk?

The expert opinion regarding the weight of an arrow for elk is averaged at around 420 grains. Some hunters have been successful in dropping an elk with a lighter arrow, while others swear by heavier ones. The main thing here is your personal preference, what you are comfortable with, and how you take aim. Keep practicing, and you will eventually learn what works for you.

How Many Arrows in Your Quiver for Elk Hunting?

While it can carry more, hunters typically carry around ten arrows in their quivers. They might not be needed. But you certainly need at least three to take follow-up shots at your target. Having more arrows is definitely good, but it does increase the load you have to carry, so three arrows are ideal. 

What Arrow Weight For Recurve Elk Hunt?

We think that heavier arrows are more suited for recurve elk hunts. They are more competent at absorbing the kinetic energy generated by the bow. You need a good length-weight combination to be successful. Think around at least ten grains per inch of the arrow length without the broadhead. This takes us at around 500 grains. 

How Much Kinetic Energy Does it Take to Kill an Elk?

The recommended kinetic energy range for big game hunting is 42 to 64 ft-lbs. You may be aware that modern, hot-rod compound bows manufactured nowadays are perfectly capable of producing 70+ ft-lbs. At this rate, even if you use a heavier arrow, you will still have some energy to spare after what is required to harvest an elk.

My name is Jeff and I have been hunting and fishing for over 40 years. I am an avid archery lover, bass fisherman, and all-around outdoorsman. Currently, I'm obsessed with elk hunting but I'm sure I'll move onto a different favorite soon. You gotta love hunting for that reason :) If you have any questions, or just want chat about your latest hunting score or big catch, you can reach me at Read more about Big Game Logic.