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Location: Aurora, Colorado
Joined: 04/21/2012
Posts: 34
I hunted this exact area. 

I hunted this exact area.  Never before have I seen this much hunting pressure.  Sat in the exact same place where in years past maybe 2 or 3 guys came by the entire season.  This year I lost count on the very first day.  Over 25 people.  Besides the hunters there were outfitters with their pack trains coming through every few hours. 

As far as Ripple Creek Lodge I can't recommend them.  I'm sure they're good guys, but no way I would pay thousands of dollars for a hunt on Public land with these many hunters.  They actually have camps less than 2 miles from the road that you can walk to in a hour.  Right on the main trails.  It's ridiculous. 

DenverBowHunter's picture
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Joined: 09/10/2012
Posts: 14
IMO

People need to realize that elk are scattered throughout the entire state.  The Flat Top units are insanely overrun with people.  The best part of hunting is being alone.  Shooting an animal is secondary to solitude.  If you put effort into hunting all year long, there will be success for you.  Count on yourself to find the elk, all year round, not an outfitter and success will follow.

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Location: Southeast Colorado
Joined: 01/07/2007
Posts: 93
Outfitters

"Count on yourself to find the elk, all year round, not an outfitter and success will follow."

That's all well and good...and sound advice....but there are many of us who have reached the age (over 60) where we don't have the campanions of youth and the interest in solo hunting that we once did. I too want to enjoy the solitude and peace of the wilderness, but it's a lot more work than it once was. This year, for the first time ever, I employed the services of an outfitter and was pleasantly surprised. Not only was I successful, the camp atmosphere was of very high quality and solitude was adundant. Interestingly enough, my hunt also took place in the Flat Tops.

Each to his own.
.

DenverBowHunter's picture
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Joined: 09/10/2012
Posts: 14
You're right. To each his

You're right. To each his own. I often times forget that not everyone out there on the mountain is capable of backpacking in and doing it alone. If you can't do the work yourself, due to age or physical abilities, an outfitter is a good choice. My dad is in your shoes as well and can't hunt like he did in his youth. He relies on me to get him into the elk. I found him a dandy five point this year before opening day. He successfully shot it opening day and I packed it out for him with help from a buddy. Dad packed the head though:) Anyhow, I understand your point and it's good to hear that people of all ages are out enjoying God's creation!

Centennial's picture
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Location: Front Range, CO
Joined: 10/12/2006
Posts: 55
Welcome to elk hunting in

Welcome to elk hunting in unit 24.  Zero for 3 this year in the wilderness (zero for 2 in 2011 and 1 for 4 in 2010) and we have been hunting the same area since the mid 70s.  If it weren't such a big part of our family history and an annual "event" of sorts, I would have given up long ago for better and more relaxing areas.  (Some years I do)   All of the articles over the years have had an impact and they keep coming.  More and more people are coming in and It's almost impossible to get away, even in the wilderness area.  And this year, snow up top 1st rifle made walking difficult the first few days and moved the elk, but if you were there, you know that.  Ill be back next year though spending a week with family, a million of my closest hunting buddies, and getting some great exercise.  May even see an elk to shoot...

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