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daddylonglegs's picture
Joined: 08/02/2014
Posts: 1
Switching from well scouted and known Black Mountain to Freeman Reservoir Area. Well advised???

Have been hunting the Black Mountain area North of Craig for 4 or 5 years now. my hunting party has taken and seen several elk there. My chances have been good, but I have yet to cash in on an elk in that area. Some connections highly recommended the Freeman Reservoir area, and after camping there recently I can see it holds promise. Seems a bit more dense with Aspens and some good trails compared to the intermittent meadows, dark pine, and aspens of the east side. Although I will say Im not thrilled with the heavy, shoulder high undergrowth on the Freeman side. 

Would those of you who have hunted both recommend one over the other? Please keep in mind that this is a hunting forum and that I am aware there are heavy amouns of hunters in both areas. I hunt probably as far away from other hunters as possible and walk to the far reaches of the area, so please do not mislead in any way. Your forthright input is greatly appreciated. I dont like a crowded hillside any more than you do and go to great lengths to avoid such scenarios. 

I like Black Mountain and have probably scouted every feed and watering hole on it. So, I dont take lightly the decision to switch. What say you all?


Joined: 07/16/2009
Posts: 70
not far from you

We hunt very close to that area and have had good success the last few years.  We had both 1st and 2nd season tags, and the crowds were only slightly worse for 2nd season.  I think there are a lot of outfitters in the area as some of the "camps" had multiple tents that had to be 60 plus feet long with three (or more) giant horse trailers parked next to them.  There were hunting camps EVERYWHERE. I bet in a 15 mile, midday, kill-some-time four-wheeler ride we saw over 40.  I don't want to say too much as it took me over a decade to find the spot, but we've taken and routinely seen elk less than a mile from a road.  I will say this though, I've been hunting public land in Colorado since 1996 and have seen less than four elk in the open, such as a field.  I think the conception of using binoculars and glassing for elk as they roam peascefully through high mountain parks is significantly overrated - especially during gun seasons.  

I think the key is being flexible as you could scout the area for two weeks in August or even September and all it takes are a few errant hunters to move them off the mountain.  

Have fun and good luck.

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