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outdoorsman121's picture
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Elevation

What is the highest elevation that an animal lives in; on the rocky moutains?

Ca_Vermonster's picture
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Well, for the most part, you

Well, for the most part, you will find animals at mort elevations in the United States.  Once you get into the larger mountains in the Himalayans and such, there might be a lesser amount, but nothing we have here is very limiting. The bigger factor with elevation in the United States is the weather.  With the changes in the weather, you will see changes in the elevation that the animals are at.

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As long as there is something

As long as there is something for them to eat such as grass or some kind of seeds animals will be there all the way up to where there isn't anything left for them to eat. 

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14K

There are mountain goats over 14,000 feet.  And I filmed some muleys while mountain goat hunting that were over 13,000 feet.

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It is amazing how high up

It is amazing how high up these animals live and thrive.  The mountain goat I shot was at 8000 feet in the Canadian Rockies and compared to the previous post that is low.  14000 feet is insane not only for goats to live there, but for hunters to go after them.  Simple incredible.

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I remember about 35 years ago

I remember about 35 years ago or so and being on a hunting trip.  My partner had never hunted the area before and as we walked up the trail asked how far up it we were going to go.  I pointed up to the tree line and said that is where we are going to eat lunch and he just laughed.  At noon we were sitting at the tree line and that is where we began the hunt.  The next morning he shot one of the biggest mule deer that I have ever seen at around 12,000'.  It was a non-typical that scored around 220pts.  That afternoon as we were packing it out he mentioned that he was now going to give up smoking and would listen to me about getting into hunting shape.

Now if I could just get a helecopter to drop me off at that same location now I would be all set.   

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elevation

The mountain behind my home is more than 11,000 feet. The valley floor is about 4800 feet. Big mule deer bucks spend much of each year near the very top. Right now they are from the valley floor to about 6,000 feet because the rut is on and that is where the does are. The mountain goats are generally lower than the deer, but in steeper spots. Same with bighorn sheep. Elk rarely go really high. They are generally 7,000 to 9,000 feet but come lower in winter.

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Sounds like your home is

Sounds like your home is located in a great location.  Be nice to live near all those animals and the mountains too.

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They will live at all

They will live at all elevations. Weather, food, shelter are the driving factors. I think one might be surprised on what they find 9000+ feet. Not to say a lot but you might come on some holly ground thats just holding some awsome animals.

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Mountain goats thrive at the

Mountain goats thrive at the highest elevations with Bighorn Sheep bringing following up with a close secone. Both of these species make a living out of some of the nastiest terrain around. Mule deer and elk are generalists. They can make a living out of a pinjon juniper woodland down in the lowlands or they can thrive up above timberline. I have seen bachelor herds of mule deer bucks in the summer above 12,500 and have seen one buck (a really dumb forkie that could not figure out what I was) above 13,000 feet. I had a 5x5 bull elk follow me across a big bowl above 12, 500 feet while I was working during my internship this summer. On another big horn sheep count in a different part of Rocky Mountain National Park I saw a herd of over 200 cows and calves at an elevation that had to be approaching 13,000 feet. It is pretty amazing how all of these animals can handle steep terrain. The sheep and goats can handle the rocky stuff like pro's but elk and deer can handle drastically steep terrain like it is nothing.

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