Elk, like many other large mammals like them, do not have set times as alpha males. The biggest and strongest males are in charge until they grow old or younger males challenge and dethrone them for the right to fertilize females. Elk live about 10-12 years and reach maturity around age 2 so it would be very rare for a male to dominate a herd for more than a couple years before a rival challenges him for dominance.
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