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thestory's picture
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Mule Deer Elevation

I have a few mule deer questions for some of you more experienced hunters on here. What is the main elevataion I will be finding the mulies? I know they will come down lower once the snow hits. I am wondering for GMU 29, how far west into the mountains should I be able to find them?

Also, how will the area that was affected by the forest fires effect the deer? If anyone has any suggestions on this area, I would love to hear. My recent scouting trips say that I need help.

-Chris

exbiologist's picture
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Location: Colorado
Joined: 09/19/2008
Posts: 2399
the lower the better in 29

Stay below 9,000 feet.  Most of the deer in that unit (and in many places) are along the foothills.  So hit the lowest elevation public lands you can find.  There is forest service around some of the reservoirs, plus a state park you can hunt

WishIWasHunting's picture
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Location: Brighton, CO
Joined: 01/31/2011
Posts: 676
In researching my own hunt

In researching my own hunt this fall, I thought I would share some of the information I found.  I believe the State Park exbio mentioned above is the Eldorado Canyon State Park.  From the State Parks website http://www.parks.state.co.us/Parks/EldoradoCanyon/ParkActivities/Pages/EldoradoCanyonActivities.aspx,

"Hunting is allowed the Tuesday after Labor Day through March 31st in the Crescent Meadows portion of the park only (archery and black-powder weapons only). The appropriate license is necessary depending on what you are hunting, all Colorado Division of Wildlife bag and possession limits apply."

Thought that might save somebody some time by adding it to this forum.

Ca_Vermonster's picture
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Location: San Diego, CA
Joined: 07/27/2007
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How long ago did the forest

How long ago did the forest fires hit?  I know that after the 2 big ones we had out here in So Cal, after a couple of good rain storms, the green started sprouting up, and the deer were back wandering through there relatively soon.

They might have lost their bedding areas, and main protected travel routes, but given enough time after the fire, the burn areas will be a great area for glassing to try and catch a nice mulie out feeding on the new growth.

Good Luck!

thestory's picture
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Does staying below 9000 feet

Does staying below 9000 feet have to do with the weather? I have heard a lot of the bigger bucks will roam solo in the higher elevations. I would imagine the snow is what would push them down, is that correct?

dosghooter's picture
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Location: Wyoming
Joined: 08/23/2003
Posts: 28
Not Necessarily

The mule deer in my area can be found at any elevation. The largest I ever killed (a 38" 7X9) was at around 7,000 ft and the town I live in is around 7200. The mountains just south of us are over 10,000 ft. I have taken a few higher but basically what I have seen is they are where the food is. I live in the area I hunt so get to watch them year round and can tell you one thing. They are where they are. There ain't no patterning them like you can pattern whitetails.

exbiologist's picture
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Has nothing to do with the big boys

There's just more deer in that part of Colorado at lower elevations.  The higher stuff is poor habitat until you get to timberline, but thats only summer habitat.  The older bucks that live up there, plus their younger cronies will begin moving down by the last week of October anyway.  So while you may be seeing does or little bucks down low now, there's a chance of older deer coming through those areas as they migrate down to breeding grounds.  If you're hunting second season, it's a tough time to hunt deer that are migratory, because they could be anywhere.  Which is why I'd hunt a little lower rather than higher.  If you're hunting 3rd or 4th season, I'd still be hunting the lower country.  And deer migration has very little to do with current snow levels, and is more timed towards breeding and staying ahead of the worst of the snow.

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