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Joined: 11/28/2012
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Sounds like 34 might be my

Sounds like 34 might be my best bet so far. I'm still looking up units, but avoiding as much private land is high on my list for a unit. Seems like for archery which I may go is going to be better for any unit in terms of population of hunters. Any thoughts on 35, 36, and 44? Or an suggestions that have minimal private land.

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Can't help you on 35, 36, and

Can't help you on 35, 36, and 44.  I've hunted december in 36 for antlerless without success (both north side and south side), and have driven through some of it doing some causal scouting during the summer.  Piney river ranch controls a lot of access along the Piney river.   I've heard 44 has sanctuary issues on the north side (hearsay only), but there is good access from redtable mountain (road right down the top and may still drop off the east side), hardscrabble, and crooked creek pass areas.  I've backpacked up east brush creek and camped in the Fulfurd area -- didn't see any elk, but wasn't really looking.

Pretty much anywhere you go in colorado you will run into some private land issues.  Elk more so than deer will get pushed around until they stop getting harassed, which is often on a private patch.  By 4th season, many are parked on private.  But, there are certainly plenty of elk still on public lands, they just end up in places you may not want to go. If you haven't hunted elk, it is difficult to comprehend where they can live just fine that you can't even walk in.  Use a topo map, find the place that is very steep, has the nastiest down timber, and is as far from a road or trail as possible, and there will likely be a big bull hiding out.

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Thanks for the info. I'm

Thanks for the info. I'm thinking 34 is going to be my best be so far, I still have plenty of time to decide at least and will be open to any suggestions. Probably going to go archery to limit the pressure issue as much as I can and hopefully a little more favorable weather since this will be my first pack hunt.

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Actually unit 36 isn't that

Actually unit 36 isn't that bad of a unit for a first time hunter.  There is private there but you can get away from it and there are some nice animals that hang out there.  Also it has some good access either through Avon, Edwards, HWY 131, or Vail.  Unit 44 also has good access but you would be taking a chance drawing a archery deer tag.  The book says that you can draw but there are a few more applicants than tags so someone goes with out a deer tag there and for the other hunts you will need a few points to draw the tag.  There is also a nice elk herd in 44 but finding them at times can be quite troublesome.

34 is also a nice unit for the first time Colorado hunter.  You will have no problem drawing a archery tag for deer and purchasing a OTC either sex elk tag.  If you do decide on 34 I would recommend for you to concentrate your hunting on the tops of the canyons that head into Glenwood Canyon.  You will see other hunters and day trippers but not too bad.

Weather wise, I have seen a foot of snow during the archery hunt in September and then temperatures in the 80's a couple of days later.  But one thing that you can usually count on is rain every couple of days if not more in the afternoons.   

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36

Critter wrote:

Actually unit 36 isn't that bad of a unit for a first time hunter.  There is private there but you can get away from it and there are some nice animals that hang out there.  Also it has some good access either through Avon, Edwards, HWY 131, or Vail.  Unit 44 also has good access but you would be taking a chance drawing a archery deer tag.  The book says that you can draw but there are a few more applicants than tags so someone goes with out a deer tag there and for the other hunts you will need a few points to draw the tag.  There is also a nice elk herd in 44 but finding them at times can be quite troublesome.

34 is also a nice unit for the first time Colorado hunter.  You will have no problem drawing a archery tag for deer and purchasing a OTC either sex elk tag.  If you do decide on 34 I would recommend for you to concentrate your hunting on the tops of the canyons that head into Glenwood Canyon.  You will see other hunters and day trippers but not too bad.

Weather wise, I have seen a foot of snow during the archery hunt in September and then temperatures in the 80's a couple of days later.  But one thing that you can usually count on is rain every couple of days if not more in the afternoons.   

 

Great thx for the info. I'll check out 36 some. 

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Location: Kuna, ID
Joined: 10/29/2012
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Advice

Critter you sound like the wiseman on this fourum so I thought I would ask you for advice, you may have seen some of my posts in the past asking the same stuff. I just moved to CO and am looking for the best OTC unit for archery that would give me the best shot at trophy bulls. I've been looking at 18,28,36,37,371,44, and 45. If you could help me narrow it down a little that would be awesome. I kinda of like these ones because they are not as far a trip for me from Denver. Thanks.

Striker

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I really haven't hunted any

I really haven't hunted any of those units except for 44 but I have worked in 37 , 371, and 45 which are the three that I would recommend. In each of them I would concentrate in the wilderness areas instead of the general areas. I have seen some nice bulls wintering in 37 just to the north of Vail but they were around a 350 bull or less. 45 is about the same but you can run into a good one every now and then. In 44 you will run into a real nice bull every now and then but a 300 pt one is mostly the rule. 44 is for trophy deer and not elk.

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Location: Kuna, ID
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Advice

Thanks. I appreciate it.

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Location: Montana
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I have archery hunted elk and

I have archery hunted elk and rifle hunted deer in the early season unit 36, and it can be a good spot if you are willing to hike in the canyons or up one of the drainages into Eagles Nest Wilderness. I found most elk at treeline, but I know they are lower too, it was just a spot I could find bulls. The wilderness area lowers success, and most trails can not effectively be hunted from horseback.

I drew a rifle deer tag for 34 several years ago and turned it back in. I scouted and hike up from I-70 multiple times and as the previous poster said its dam steep, like vertical rock faces, very thick brush. I was never up on top, only in the canyon bottoms. One thing to consider with archery hunting it gets hot in any lower country along the River and meat spoilage or bears will be a real pain. Lots of bears, buy a tag. My wife and nephew had one meet them on Grizzly Creek several years ago and both the bear/nephew were going opposite directions.

 

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.

pnelson wrote:

I have archery hunted elk and rifle hunted deer in the early season unit 36, and it can be a good spot if you are willing to hike in the canyons or up one of the drainages into Eagles Nest Wilderness. I found most elk at treeline, but I know they are lower too, it was just a spot I could find bulls. The wilderness area lowers success, and most trails can not effectively be hunted from horseback.

I drew a rifle deer tag for 34 several years ago and turned it back in. I scouted and hike up from I-70 multiple times and as the previous poster said its dam steep, like vertical rock faces, very thick brush. I was never up on top, only in the canyon bottoms. One thing to consider with archery hunting it gets hot in any lower country along the River and meat spoilage or bears will be a real pain. Lots of bears, buy a tag. My wife and nephew had one meet them on Grizzly Creek several years ago and both the bear/nephew were going opposite directions.

 

 

Thx for the info, I've been told there's a lot of bears in that unit. The meat spoiling is something I've thought about, which is why I'm thinking of possibly contacting an outfitter before hand to help get it out IF I get something. 

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