Big Game preference points??? GDG
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Thread: Big Game preference points??? GDG

  1. #1
    Senior Member Boykin's Avatar
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    Default Big Game preference points??? GDG

    I'm a two year resident of Colorado, with only two points, I primarily hunt waterfowl in Co, Ks, and Il, white-tail in Illinois at the family farm, turkeys in Kansas, and accumulate points in Colorado for all big game species. I want to start branching out to other states and accumulate points for Elk, Pronghorn, and Muledeer. Any recommendations on dirictions/states and areas (doesn't have to be your honey-hole ridge)? We barely understand Colorado and since we are from Illinois where you can buy a tag and be in your stand in an hour, we are new to draws, points and GMU's. Any help is appreciated.
    -Jacob
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  3. #2
    Senior Member mikehmike's Avatar
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    I listen to a podcast that I recommend called "Meat Eater Podcast" with steven rinella...if your familiar with his show and him. He always recommends people put in for tags because a lot of states have a lottery but it takes a wile to actually win that tag. But to your question, white river national forest I believe it's called is a public land area for elk in CO. But to your point of "be in the stand in a hour"...remember that's what 90% of public land guys will do. Throwing on a pack and moving, camping over night etc is always a good idea to avoid over hunted areas, lots of human presence.

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    Senior Member saltgrass's Avatar
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    Not sure what area they hunt but knew 6 guy that go hunt every year as non res.

    They are bow hunting and bow tags are not a draw in CO from what they have told me. I'll get with them

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boykin View Post
    I'm a two year resident of Colorado, with only two points, I primarily hunt waterfowl in Co, Ks, and Il, white-tail in Illinois at the family farm, turkeys in Kansas, and accumulate points in Colorado for all big game species. I want to start branching out to other states and accumulate points for Elk, Pronghorn, and Muledeer. Any recommendations on dirictions/states and areas (doesn't have to be your honey-hole ridge)? We barely understand Colorado and since we are from Illinois where you can buy a tag and be in your stand in an hour, we are new to draws, points and GMU's. Any help is appreciated.
    -Jacob
    FWIW, Here's what I would do...

    Buy a subscription to the "Hunting Fool". I think it's around $100 @ year. Sounds expensive, I know, but for a year or two it's worth it. I don't subscribe any more as my big game career is pretty much over. ( If you call them they might send you an old issue for free ).
    Subscribe for a year or two and you will pretty much know the the States, units and seasons within them that are first, second, third, tier. The magazine will also help to explain the processes/dates for entering the state draws.
    The states/units haven't changed much in the 25/30 years that I was chasing tags out west.
    Being a resident of Colorado is a big help in CO and your other target states are relatively close.

    States that I would target as a non-resident are: AZ, NV, UT, NM. NV treats non-residents the best IMO. AZ treats non-residents the worst IMO.
    Best & Worst referring to tag availability to NRs.
    You have to buy non-resident licenses, pay fees, etc. to apply in every state.
    You will learn that it's expensive and as a non-resident it's tough to draw premium tags, archery tags are always "easier" to draw, but if you are persistent you can draw great tags. I have drawn Sheep, Elk, Mule Deer tags in some of the best states/areas and have killed some nice animals but it takes time & money.

    My wife always said I should be a hunting consultant because I spent so much time with this crap, might be able to answer any more questions you might have.

    Good Luck, Alan
    Last edited by Repaupo; 04-05-2017 at 10:42 AM.
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    Senior Member FOM's Avatar
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    Some bow tags are draw, some are not, they have an "Over The Counter" bow tag just like OTC Elk. Limited by GMU's and season/s.

    If you want to stick with Antelope, Elk and Mule Deer - I'd look at New Mexico, Wyoming, Utah and Montana.

    That's me.

    Now keep in mind, if you plan to be a Pro trainer, your opportunities to hunt will decrease dramatically, just saying....it's hard to just take time off with a full truck of dogs to train and care for....but I guess if you are going to aim high, might as well go big!

    I'm lucky to get my 10 days a year to chase Elk and Deer here in Colorado.
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  8. #6
    Senior Member MooseGooser's Avatar
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    Hunting is no longer a part of our culture...It has become a commodity. It needs regulation and a price set... Population has something to do with it..

    Hunting is big business now..

    When I hunted regularly..I didn't seem to have problems filling a deer or elk tag.. I willsay, with the elk.. I "Drew" a cow validation of an area and season that most didn't want to deal with. late December. extreame northwest Coloardo sage brush country...

    Like shootin fish in a barrel.. On public land..

    "Cant eat the racks"

    2 yr old cow is wonderful table fair..

    If Antlers and Horns are your intrest....Good luck to you..
    If ya just like to eat... there is unlimited opportunity... and you can get it done in a few hours work.. if your toes don't fall off...

    Gooser
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    Senior Member Brad's Avatar
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    Maybe things have changed but I hunted there( colorado) for about 10 years with no issues. Also in New mexico went on an antelope hunt with a 3 day notice from a vendor. There was a guy that had lived there tried for 10 years and never got a tag untill that vendor got him one. I couldnt figure that one out

  10. #8
    Senior Member spaightlabs's Avatar
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    As Gooser mentioned there is a definite move to the commoditization of big game opportunities in CO. You can make your way around the long times to draw in the most desirable units by purchasing a landowner voucher, and as you may guess, they are not inexpensive.

    If you start putting in for multiple species in multiple states you will be expending substantial financial resources to do so. even if you just put in for every species in CO while you build your points up for the next 10 to 15 years to get the unit you want or to get a Mt goat tag for instance, you will be sending several hundred dollars per year to the state and letting them sit on it for several months until the draw is done at which point they will keep an admin fee for each species you put in for.

    There are still excellent over the counter opportunities out there, and as mentioned, bow or black powder are your best opportunities as they tend tend to be during the rut and there are fewer folks participating. The harder you are willing to work, the luckier you will get in general. There are still areas where there are good numbers of good animals but people are unlikely to do the work it takes to get 8 miles back in rough country.
    Slow is smooth and smooth is fast.

  11. #9
    Senior Member Brad's Avatar
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    It seems crazy. I went to parks and wildlife a few years ago on the day we got there and got a cow tag and hunting license on the spot. Maybe it was private land but not a ranch but have hunted alot on public land with no issue in CO. If I rember right you have to draw for a bull tag but not cows depending on the unit?

  12. #10
    Senior Member FOM's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brad View Post
    It seems crazy. I went to parks and wildlife a few years ago on the day we got there and got a cow tag and hunting license on the spot. Maybe it was private land but not a ranch but have hunted alot on public land with no issue in CO. If I rember right you have to draw for a bull tag but not cows depending on the unit?
    Incorrect, you can get an OTC 2nd season rifle antlered tag (my default, if I don't draw the trophy area I like). However there are caps to the number of OTC tags. One year, when we were getting groceries at the Walmart in town, we had the pleasure of watching a group from the mid-west have a holy cow when they were unable to get tags because the cap had been reached! It is super easy to purchase OTC tags online and that's what I recommend for any out of stater who wants to hunt Elk and did not put in for the draw...don't wait till ya get here!
    "You can't eat a pig whole, but you can eat a whole pig." - Joe S.

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