10 Biggest World Record Elk

A rundown of the highest-scoring elk ever taken—all but one over 400 inches—in each record-book categoryBy Scott BestulAugust 7, 2020

We’re on the cusp of another elk season, and hunters are getting in shape, scouting like mad, and daydreaming about lovesick bulls screaming their way into bow or gun range. Well, if you’re going to dream, you may as well dream big. And the bulls below should provide plenty of fantasy fodder. Here are the top one or two bulls ever taken in each world-record elk category. All but one is or was a world-record bull, and all but one goes over, or way over, 400 inches.

1. The Spider Bull

Side-by-side image of an elk antler mount and a hunter.
Denny Austad took the current B&C word-record non-typical bull in 2008.Boone & Crockett Club

Status: Current B&C non-typical world record

Score: 478-⅝

The Spider Bull was well-known to elk fanatics, but Denny Austad seemed destined to tag the Utah giant. Austad, who bought a Governor’s Tag for six figures, hired a guide who found and kept track of the bull for months. Austad hunted the bull for nearly two weeks before getting a shot. And he missed. Even worse, Austad got carbon-monoxide poisoning from his camp trailer and had to miss half a month of hunting as he recovered. Finally back in the field, Austad and his guide were able get the bull to within 180 yards, and the hunter’s second-chance shot flew true. Rumors circulated, as they often do, that the web-antlered bull, which grossed over 500 inches, was a game-farm escapee or somehow illegitimate. But Boone & Crockett declared the monster the new non-typical world record in 2008.


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