Hey there. Just saw that I got a muzzleloader tag for this year for units 7, 8, 9, 19, & 191. Would anyone mind pointing me in the right direction for some public land hunting? It would be much appreciated.
Lots of public land in Roosevelt NF throughout all those units (except 9)(get a USFS Roosevelt-Arapahoe NF map) , and check out the Cherokee Park SWAs. The lower Cherokee Lone Pine unit has a nice big chunk of public land in 191.
There's also a good thesis on the mule deer habits and movements in Poudre Canyon in the CSU library. I don't remember what it's called, but the title should be obvious. However it was mostly following marked does up in Long Draw and Corral Creek. Most of the bucks were up higher in that study in the Rawahs, Comanche Peaks, Neotas, Never Summers, etc until the end of October. After that they came down toward the winter range in the mountain mahogany country in the middle of the canyon, around Dutch George. There certainly are small deer populations in 191 in the SWAs and in the checkerboard country northwest of there. Decent deer hunting can be had in the foothills in 7 and 8 also. If it were me during muzzleloader season, I'd get up into the wilderness areas. Poudre Wilderness is tough country and there's deer there too, just not real . I think Hawkeye270 shot a nice buck during muzzleloader season last year in the Poudre area, you might PM him for more ideas.
Oh and I was screwing around with some population modeling stuff a few days ago, and it doesn't look like there's a lot of older bucks. About 62% of the bucks in that area are going to be 1 or 2 year olds. Just saying that real big dudes are going to be hard to come by.
There can be too much of a good thing with antler rattling.
I like to hit the horns together for a good 30- to 40-second rattling sequence and then hang them up and resist the urge to hit them again.
This works to the hunter's advantage, because if a buck has heard it, he may have been 300 or 400 yards away and he comes in and he's not exactly sure where it came from.
When finally is time to rattle again throw a slight change-up into the routine.
The second time, don't rattle as loud...