First trip out west

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Chuck B
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First trip out west

Unread postby Chuck B » Fri Aug 28, 2020 6:19 am

Hey guys. Trying to plan my first trip out west for elk. Been on my list for a long time now and seems like a good time to do it as we don’t have youth football (I coach two teams) this season.

For an OTC tag, any of you guys have insights on states and units to target? I was thinking rifle for this first trip. My buddy had recommended unit 421 in CO, but that season dates might be tricky for me.

Any thoughts appreciated. I won’t be asking for specific hunting spots, but states and units would help get me in right direction.


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Rich M
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Re: First trip out west

Unread postby Rich M » Fri Aug 28, 2020 8:15 am

This is real late in the game to be trying to do anything fancy. Far as I know CO is your state.

Find an OTC unit and get moving. It'll be crowded, lotsa guys. Plan on spending you time looking for critters - near and far from the roads, many folks hoot elk withing a mile of the roads and trails. Cover ground, find fresh sign, slow down and hunt.

Have fun, enjoy the mountains and good luck.

CO is a pretty state - worth the trip.
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seazofcheeze
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Re: First trip out west

Unread postby seazofcheeze » Fri Aug 28, 2020 10:57 am

Are you planning for fall 2020 or fall 2021?
camelcluch
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Re: First trip out west

Unread postby camelcluch » Fri Aug 28, 2020 11:48 am

Lots of questions needed. One, what rifle season is tricky? There are multiple seasons here. Two, are you coming out this year or next? There is still time to get a trip well planned. Third, car camp or packing in? Packs will take a lot more planning if you have not done it before. Last, pick an area you would like to hunt. Terrain from sage and junipers to tall mountains.
Chuck B
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Re: First trip out west

Unread postby Chuck B » Fri Aug 28, 2020 2:57 pm

camelcluch wrote:Lots of questions needed. One, what rifle season is tricky? There are multiple seasons here. Two, are you coming out this year or next? There is still time to get a trip well planned. Third, car camp or packing in? Packs will take a lot more planning if you have not done it before. Last, pick an area you would like to hunt. Terrain from sage and junipers to tall mountains.



This fall. Yes, late minute planning here. But oh well, life’s an adventure. I have flexibility on my schedule and rifle season. The idea Would be to set up a base camp and bring four wheeler to get deeper and then hike in 1-5 miles in from there. I am in good shape. As far as hunting terrain, would like to be in mountains, for the experience of it all.
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seazofcheeze
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Re: First trip out west

Unread postby seazofcheeze » Fri Aug 28, 2020 3:18 pm

Chuck B wrote:
camelcluch wrote:Lots of questions needed. One, what rifle season is tricky? There are multiple seasons here. Two, are you coming out this year or next? There is still time to get a trip well planned. Third, car camp or packing in? Packs will take a lot more planning if you have not done it before. Last, pick an area you would like to hunt. Terrain from sage and junipers to tall mountains.



This fall. Yes, late minute planning here. But oh well, life’s an adventure. I have flexibility on my schedule and rifle season. The idea Would be to set up a base camp and bring four wheeler to get deeper and then hike in 1-5 miles in from there. I am in good shape. As far as hunting terrain, would like to be in mountains, for the experience of it all.


You can rule Montana out. The tag draw is over. I don't know of enough about the rest of the elk states to make an informed comment. Hope you find something that works and knock down a slob. Good luck!
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Re: First trip out west

Unread postby Groundpounder » Fri Aug 28, 2020 3:26 pm

pretty sure Idaho OTC is sold out too. that's my state of choice for OTC elk. probably too late to get an OTC in many of the states. I bought mine as soon as they opened it up to nonres again and they sold quick. seems like this year lots of tags were sold to nonresidents looking for more hunting opportunity. if it's your first elk hunt you might consider just going out with someone else who has a tag this year if you cannot find an otc. lots to learn year one regardless of whether you have a kill tag or not. use this year as a scouting year if you can't find a tag, you will be that much farther ahead of the game next year.
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Re: First trip out west

Unread postby camelcluch » Fri Aug 28, 2020 6:02 pm

If you have flexibility then pick the season that is best for you. 1st season is your best for success. 2nd is the longest and 3rd runs into November. 2nd and 3rd are hard for a pack trip due to weather. Snows and awful cold temps can be a regular event for these. Hunting is good any of the season but you can forget about getting away from people. Colorado is just pressured. The OTC tag is nice because it allows you to move to find animals. The planning really isn’t much. The big considerations are shelters and tags. Then it’s just hunting. You may want to log onto the DOW site and look at the season structure to make a choice. If you would like 1st rifle you will need to pick up a leftover tag. There are still some available in decent areas. Other than that, grab a gun and hunt.


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