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SSGJB's picture
Joined: 09/16/2011
Posts: 44
How much snow is too much

Me and my dad will be just outside Meeker for 2nd season elk. We will be caming along a fire road. My question is how much snow is too much snow before we should decide to break down camp and head into town or lower elevation? Being from WI we know how to operate in the snow unless it gets to the 3-4 foot range. Then i think it will be very difficult to get out. We just don't want to be that hunting group you hear about that got snowed in.

Critter's picture
Grand Slam Challenge Winner!Moderator
Location: Western Colorado
Joined: 03/26/2009
Posts: 4423
It all depends on just how

It all depends on just how much snow that you can handle, and I believe that it is different for everyone out there.  If you go prepared you should be able to get around in a couple of feet with no problems but if you are not prepared then you better get out when it starts to fall. 

About 16 years ago I was hunting in Utah when a storm came up during opening day of the deer hunt.  It dumped up to 3' of that nice white fluffy stuff all over the hillsides.  I chained up my truck and had no problems getting around where I needed to go and into some places that I really shouldn't of gone.  After a couple of days the sun came out along with all of the animals but by then most of the other hunters had bailed out and we has what you would call a turkey shoot.  We just took our pick of what deer we wanted to take home. 

The best suggestion is to go prepared for the worst and hope for the best.

Ca_Vermonster's picture
Grand Slam Challenge Winner!Moderator
Location: San Diego, CA
Joined: 07/27/2007
Posts: 5813
You know what, i don't think

You know what, i don't think I would be as intimidated hunting in the 2 feet of snow, as I would be about the stuff AFTER the kill.  once that animal is down, in the case of an elk or big deer, I can't imagine trying to roll around in a few feet of snow, skinning and butchering an animal of that size.  Then, add on top of that the fact that you will need to pack it out, however far you are, making multiple trips. 

Gonna get tired pretty quick, walking through all that deep snow.  If that doesn't bother you, then I don't think it would be a problem.  After the first trip or 2, the snow should be packed down making each subsequent trip easier walking.

Good luck!

Critter's picture
Grand Slam Challenge Winner!Moderator
Location: Western Colorado
Joined: 03/26/2009
Posts: 4423
One thing about packing a elk

One thing about packing a elk out in the snow is that after the first trip you should have a pretty good trail to follow after you pack down the snow. 

And snowshoes are wothless unless you can get onto a packed trail.  They still sink into the snow, just not as far as you booted foot wouild. 

Location: Colorado
Joined: 07/13/2011
Posts: 924
Snowshoes. ;)

Snowshoes.  Yes

numbnutz's picture
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Location: portland,oregon
Joined: 09/06/2007
Posts: 3058
I have hunted with waist deep

I have hunted with waist deep snow before. It isn't fun by any means but if your die hard enough you can do it. As far as camping I would head to a lower elevation when my truck couldn't handle it. My personal barrier is about 12" of snow. I have been in snow storms that dumped 18" over night, When we woke up we pack up and headed lower. For getting an animal out in deep snow is a chore but one thing that makes it easier is to pack a tarp with you and some Pam cooking spary wrap a couple quaters up in the tarp and spray the bottom with the cooking spray and pull it out, That has worked like a charm for me in the past. Good luck on your hunt and report back with how you do.

GooseHunter Jr's picture
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Location: Colorado
Joined: 09/28/2005
Posts: 3748
I tghink it all depends on

I tghink it all depends on the person and that persons equipment.  I personally am Ok at about the 2-3 foot range....once it starts getting to the 2 foot ram=nge we really start to watch thing and the weather and if it is calling for more...we kinda get thing originized, so if we get a foot or smore we can get out quickly.  As far as hunting in the snow I have hunted in snow to the waist and not had to many problens once you get some trail made up a bit.  Elk and deer may move out with that much snow, but hunting in the deep snow like that can be very rewarding.

Location: Denver
Joined: 10/16/2009
Posts: 70
Prepare and pack based on the

Prepare and pack based on the assumption that you will encounter some serious blizzard conditions -- just like you see in WI in January.  The daily average high in Meeker in mid October is about 64 degrees but the potential for much lower temps, heavy snow, and heavy wind is very real.

Me personally, I camp in the transition zone down closer to the valley floor and paved roads  and make a 10-20 minute drive every morning.

Have confidence in your preparations and your initial selection of a camp site.  Then the chances of the weather really messing up your hunt go way down.   

Location: Arvada, co
Joined: 10/07/2009
Posts: 23
Be prepared

Be prepared for anything, bring chains for all 4 tires. A copuple years ago we were hunting up a heinous road and 8 inches made for a treacherous drive down. We would not have made it out with our transmission without chains. Good luck and be safe.

SGM's picture
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Location: Canon City, Colorado
Joined: 08/13/2011
Posts: 1147
As most said how much snow

As most said how much snow isto much is a relative term. I hunt that area and what concerns me more is the slick as snot mud under the snow once it starts to melt. Seen more folks stuck due to mud and bad roads than the snow. Also allot of the time you get freezing rain just before the snow which makes and ice rink. Be sure to have good chains. Also if you know you have a steep grade to go down that would concern me too. Better to get down and set up a new camp thaan be stuck 2-7 days or more. Last point is the weather in Meeker has nothing to do with the weather up on Yellow Jacket Pass or Ripple Creek. Can be 60s in Meeker and snowing and blowing in the hills. Good luck SSG and let us know how you do

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