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Joined: 02/09/2013
Posts: 3
New to the Forum and to elk Hunting

I came across this forum and saw a lot of good information so I wanted to finally create an account and post for myself.  I moved to Colorado about 2 years ago.  I'm 28 and was raised by an anti-guns father so I never had much chance to get into hunting early on.  I've always been into the outdoors and a huge fisherman.  Last year I had my first taste of elk and that is what got elk hunting on my brain.  I decided to take an entire year to do my research, get in shape, and prep myself for the 2013 season.  Well I've gotten a great deal of research in and I've been doing 14ers for  a while now and I feel physically prepared for it.  Right now I'm starting to feel overwhelmed by the choice of where to hunt.  I live in Firestone and figured I should stay as close to home as possible and started looking at unit 20 and 18.  After a little reading up I've found those units might not be my best choice.  I'm planning for both myself and my father-in-law who have great outdoor survival skills but we aren't the most avid hunters.  We want to go for the meat so I've been looking at cow tags.  I just can't figure out where to start as far as units go and what season will be best.  We'll be going for the rifle seasons but other than that, the time of year doesn't matter as much as finding the best opportunity for us.  I would like to stay in the NW area of the state but won't limit myself to that if it makes a huge difference.  I can't afford to hire a guide or use an outfitter it will most likely just be the 2 of us but we are prepared to do a lot of hiking as I understand getting as far from everyone else as possible helps with the success.  I hope I've given enough info to allow for some solid advice, if I've left something out please feel free to ask, I appreciate any help given.  I certainly don't want to ask for anyone to give up a spot or secrets but just to point me in a good direction.  I want to get into this and stay in it for a long time, and if anyone needs a hunting buddy to pass on some skills and advice I'm all ears.  

Thanks again,

Phil

buckykm1's picture
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Location: Vicksburg, Mi
Joined: 11/24/2010
Posts: 337
Welcome

Welcome to the forum, I think that I would start by talking to the Game Biologist for those 2 units, they are usually very helpful. and I am sure some of the other guys on here will be too.

Kevin

WishIWasHunting's picture
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Grand Slam Challenge Winner!
Location: Brighton, CO
Joined: 01/31/2011
Posts: 667
My $.000002

There is tons of great information on this website, and you made the right decision to start posting. Congrats on making the decision to start hunting, especially coming from an anti-guns household!

As for picking an area to hunt, that is entirely up to you and what you want out of your hunting experience. You need to pick your area and season simultaneously. If you really are looking for a meat hunt, the late season cow licenses are a good bet. However, that is likely not going to give much of a camping experience, or what you might have envisioned for your elk hunt. That might make a 1st season rifle tag your best bet.

Units 20 or 18 could still be the best units for you. The plus side there is that since they are closer, you might have a better chance of getting in more scouting trips. More than anything you are going to read on this website, in a magazine, or in a book, the best thing you can do to improve your chances of success is to get some miles on your boots in the area that you finally decide to hunt.

As for the NW corner of the state, I have hunted Units 4, 5, 214 for the last 3 years and I have come up empty each time. This past year, we had multiple shot opportunities on cows, but we only had bull tags. There are lots of elk in that area, but there are also lots of hunters and no way to truly get away from other hunters.

Don't worry about not being able to afford a guide or outfitter. I have never used either, but I think I enjoy my hunts more without them.

Good luck!

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Joined: 02/09/2013
Posts: 3
I'm going to hit up the CPW

I'm going to hit up the CPW Hunt planners in a couple of weeks.  I spoke with one them on the phone already and he suggested stopping by for some detailed help.  I think once I can find an area to concentrate on I'll be set.  I just don't want to feel like I've picked a GMU that has little to no elk in it.  The good news is I know I wanna stick to the NW part of the State, the bad news is the number of GMUs I'm looking at isn't small yet.  I'm hoping the CPW folks and the use of a couple forums can help me narrow it down some.  Plus, I haven't even looked at how many points its going to take to get into any of them yet.  So far I'm looking at 3, 310, 4, 5, 12, 13, 131, 231, 214, 441, 14, 16, 17, 18, 181, 171, 161, 6, 7, 8, 191, 9, and 20.  Yea I know its a lot, but thats the region I think I wanna be in so now I just gotta start knocking them off 1 by 1 till I have a few left.

exbiologist's picture
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Moderator
Location: Colorado
Joined: 09/19/2008
Posts: 2399
Western Hunter Blog

Back when I was writing the western hunter blog in this site I wrote a lot about unit selection in Colorado.  Might refer to some of those articles and why I'm not very high on most of those units.

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Joined: 02/09/2013
Posts: 3
mind pointing me in the

mind pointing me in the direction of those articles?  I haven't quite figured out how to navigate this site well enough yet.  I'd love to read them

exbiologist's picture
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Moderator
Location: Colorado
Joined: 09/19/2008
Posts: 2399
Lots to look at

Staer around here:  http://www.biggamehunt.net/blogs/western-hunter?page=2

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Location: Colorado
Joined: 07/13/2011
Posts: 866
Dead link.

Dead link.

BoneCollector's picture
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Location: Ohio woods
Joined: 02/01/2011
Posts: 277
Link

http://westernhuntingdata.com/

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