Elk wandered through the forest looking for a partner. The mating season was in full swing, and the bucks that usually traveled with the other males had dispersed to find mates for the season. As Elk bellowed his mating call through the forest, his bugling alerted Mountain Lion that a feast could be in the making.
Mountain Lion circled Elk, getting closer to his prey moment by moment. Elk sensed the impending danger when the forest grew suddenly silent. He broke for the high country when he spotted his pursuer, but Mountain Lion was far behind. As Elk made a running leap for the timberline, Mountain Lion gained on him, but Elk continued to run onward, displaying tremendous stamina. Finally Mountain Lion gave up, having spent his energy in spurts as he tried to jump over boulders to reach Elk. Elk paced himself, making headway as he climbed skyward toward the high country. Elk had no other defense except his ability to go the distance, setting a pace that allowed him to utilize his stamina and energy to the fullest.
Elk medicine teaches that pacing yourself will increase your stamina. Elk medicine people may not be the first ones to arrive at a goal, but they always arrive without getting burned out. Elk have a curious kind of warrior energy because, except at mating time, they honor the company of their own gender. They call on the medicine of brotherhood or sisterhood. In discovering the strength which is gained from loving the gender that is your own, you will feel the comradeship that arises from similarity of experience. This is a special medicine that allows the friendship of others of your same sex to overcome potential competition or jealousy.