25 replies [Last post]
Offline
Joined: 05/27/2010
Posts: 22
Elk hunt in units 70 71 72 73 711

a friend and I drew elk tags for units 70 71 72 73 and 711 was wonderingif anybody had any info that would help in these units to narrow down our hunting area a little. we are from south dakota and would be willing to share info from our area if somebody needed some

exbiologist's picture
Offline
Moderator
Location: Colorado
Joined: 09/19/2008
Posts: 2399
Re: Elk hunt in units 70 71 72 73 711

It's a lot of diverse country. What do you know about the area, what specifically do you want to know? What areas have you been considering? How to plan on hunting? Ie, backcountry wilderness camping with horses or pack frames? Truck camping? Do you have ATVs? How are you as a still hunter? Would you rather spot and stalk or ambush on meadows, trails, saddles, etc? What season? First rifle?

Offline
Joined: 05/27/2010
Posts: 22
Re: Elk hunt in units 70 71 72 73 711

i have the first season oct 16 to the 20th and my friend has the second season same area. area wise i dont know alot about the land was looking around the cortez area or where the is a decent population of elk Yes as far as hunting i have been hunting for around 20 yrs just my first elk hunt though. was kinda thinking around the spot and stalk method unless found a good area to set up on for still hunting . i have a pickup with a box camper also have horses but didn't plan on bringing them unless u think this would help. im wanting to get in pretty deep or can atleast neither of us are lazy hunters. im looking for maps and any info that i can find that would be helpfull thanks

exbiologist's picture
Offline
Moderator
Location: Colorado
Joined: 09/19/2008
Posts: 2399
Re: Elk hunt in units 70 71 72 73 711

Those are popular units, so if you're willing and able, I'd be hunting the backcountry. Are you familiar with what a federally designated wilderness area is? You should really think about taking the horses, even if you're planning on camping at the truck. They will help you immensely if you are trying to get in deep and get back out every day. To distance yourself from the ATVs and to get to where the elk are pushed, there's a good sized wilderness area. The Lizard Head Wilderness in units 70 and 71 has several peaks over 13,000 feet. The really steep rocky crags aren't elk habitat, but the basins below and leading up to them certainly are. That's the only significant roadless area in those units. The rest of it is canyons, mesas and minor mountains with roads and ATV trails all over the place.
Some of the canyon country is more suitable to spot and stalk than the mountains, where it is often difficult to find openings that allow you to glass the opposite side of a drainage. Still hunting and ambushing is typically more productive in the montains, but once you narrow down an area, check out Google Earth and try to look for vantage points if you want to spot and stalk.

I don't think I have any pictures of the Lizard Heads handy, but to get an idea of just how big and how far mountain distances are, I'll try to fire you up with some other recent pictures. 3-5 miles in the mountains is not the same as the 3 miles in South Dakota, even in the Black Hills. The scale of our mountains just blows away what most midwesterners are used to. Not trying to scare or intimidate you, just prepare you for a reality that is difficult to imagine if you've never been off the beaten path in the Rockies, and show you why I'd advise horses if you have them. Also need to realize the competitive nature of public land hunting in popular units dictates that you get in deep for a more pleasant experience, and that isn't possible when there are ATV trails and dirt roads all over the place.

This is what I mean by canyon country, where you can do a little spotting and stalking


This is MILES from nowhere




Not miles from nowhere, but just looking up a drainage into the wilderness, that peak is about 6 miles away:

ecubackpacker's picture
Offline
Grand Slam Challenge Winner!
Location: NC
Joined: 09/11/2009
Posts: 1639
Re: Elk hunt in units 70 71 72 73 711

Great pics, Ex.. They got me fired up, now I just need to find a tag.

exbiologist's picture
Offline
Moderator
Location: Colorado
Joined: 09/19/2008
Posts: 2399
Re: Elk hunt in units 70 71 72 73 711

OTC archery, 2nd season or 3rd season. 3rd is two weekend this year...

ecubackpacker's picture
Offline
Grand Slam Challenge Winner!
Location: NC
Joined: 09/11/2009
Posts: 1639
Re: Elk hunt in units 70 71 72 73 711

May have to try the OTC archery b/c I don't like the crowds. I'll go over your rankings for archery to see what I can find Think

Offline
Joined: 05/27/2010
Posts: 22
Re: Elk hunt in units 70 71 72 73 711

that looks pretty good is that what u believe would be the better unit out of the five to hunt. and i assume most of the area is public hunting? figured the terrain would be tough was kinda looking forward to it ...thats why im starting with the questions so early. Big smile

exbiologist's picture
Offline
Moderator
Location: Colorado
Joined: 09/19/2008
Posts: 2399
Re: Elk hunt in units 70 71 72 73 711

Well, the border splits the Lizard Head Wilderness in half. 70 on the north 71 on the south. There's a lot more public land on the south side of the Lizard Heads than the north, but there's still enough there. I just don't like the size of the private refuges on the north end. So I'd be coming in from Dunton and the that area in 71.

Offline
Joined: 05/27/2010
Posts: 22
Re: Elk hunt in units 70 71 72 73 711

how is navajo lake that area looks pretty remote

exbiologist's picture
Offline
Moderator
Location: Colorado
Joined: 09/19/2008
Posts: 2399
Re: Elk hunt in units 70 71 72 73 711

It certainly is remote, but might be a little too alpine for mid October.

Related Forum Threads You Might Like

ThreadThread StarterRepliesLast Updated
Colorado GMU 35, 36 Late Season Elk HuntLarryO312/30/2012 19:34 pm
NM units 51, 52?henry wilkins403/15/2009 15:28 pm
Idaho MooseCO-Bear004/03/2005 16:53 pm
Point Creep!!mossbuck35902/17/2011 00:19 am
Colorado Elk Hunteddiehartman112/01/2002 21:27 pm