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ndemiter's picture
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Location: lawrence, KS
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laPlata mounatins elk hunting

just to the west of Durango, CO, there are the la plata mountains. I believe this is unit 70? i could be wrong on this.

I'm wondering if anybody here hunts these mountains, and how they find elk during the second season? mostly, the elevation. it appears as though, from Google Earth, that most of this land is national forest land.

are there a lot oof guys camping out there? is it likely our camp will be safe when we leave for the day?

we won't be using atv's, but i am concerned about hunting pressure.

exbiologist's picture
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Unit 71

I don't think that is unit 70, it's partly 71, partly 73, and 74 as the spine of the ridges makes up the border between those units. Either way, it's moderately popular in 2nd season, as are most of the OTC units, but certainly not overrun the way unit 12, 18, 214, 441, 211, and similar units can be. Plenty of national forest for people to spread out on, but that's also the most popular season, so you're looking at about 3 hunters per square mile of public land. If you buy the OTC bull tag, it won't matter which unit you're hunting in, but if you buy a cow tag it will matter. It's pretty rare for gear to be stolen from camp, but it does happen on occasion. As for ATVs, they are legal to operate on many of those trails in the area, so you can count on them being there. But they aren't allowed on all the trails, so choose wisely. Elevation wise, there's some pretty high country in the La Platas, so it's fair to assume much of what you'll want to be hunting will be above 11,000 feet if the weather is warm. That's not to say that there's no elk at other elevations, it's just that because there is higher country, the elk will prefer it, except for areas that are too easy to access, at which point they'll be driven down lower into more difficult to access country, such as some of the canyons in the area.

ndemiter's picture
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that's good to know. we used

that's good to know. we used to camp in the national forest in ohio all the time when i was a kid. we camped with about30 other people every year, after a while, we all knew eachothers families and had a great time visiting with everyone, and importantly, began to trust every one.

unfortunately, i won't have that kind of setting this year in colorado.

i have a camp trailer, but it's open-top so somebody could just help themselves to my camp if they feel like it.

i'm going to give it a shot. i checked the area out and it looks pretty rugged, which might be up my alley as far as finding game. i've spent about the last week on google earth checking out the spots, so hopefully, i'll find something legal.

 

thanks

exbiologist's picture
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get yourself some maps

My favorite maps are the National Geographic Trails Illustrated Series, I suspect it will be map 144.  It has very good landownership and topography, as well as showing road closure dates and gates.  Also going to want the San Juan National Forest map which may have additional rules and regs for ATV users that you'll want to know.

ndemiter's picture
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i have not used natgeo maps

i have not used natgeo maps before, but that's a good tip for me to try.

thanks.

now i just have to see what all tags i come out with this year.

 

thanks "EX"!

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I think the backdoor draw

I think the backdoor draw should be this week!

ndemiter's picture
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hopefully i'm correct in that

hopefully i'm correct in that this unit has a general tag. i'd like to hunt it this year.

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