I just got back from Elk Camp in the Bethal area and was shocked to see the lack of Hunters and Camps in that area. I spoke to may long time hunters of that area and was told that the number of Hunters has been decreasing by half in the past few years. I am curious to know if anyone else has observed this same trend in the areas they hunt. I was contacted by a Game Warrden on routine license check who made the statement that once the local Spikes have been taken usually in the first 3 days of the hunt that the hunters chances are slim to none for success without weather and with the early season this rarely happens. I am sure this is not new to all of you but as a result I observed desperite hunters lining the Chinook highway taking pot shots at small groups (3 to4) Elk as they headed for the Oak Creek Safety zone using the Gaurd rails as Rifle rests. Though our camp was able to harvest 2 animals opening weekend the rest of the week yielded no results no matter where or how hard we hunted. I left the moutains very disappointed and frusterated , but I love Elk Hunting success or not and will continue to do so.