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jim boyd's picture
Grand Slam Challenge Winner!
Joined: 07/06/2010
Posts: 889
Colorado DOW Site – Map Overlays

Man, the more I look at this Colorado DOW Site, the more impressed I become!

First came the Elk University, then the “Insider Updates” via email – now I am trying to learn these interactive GMU Maps, they can even show an overlay where elk movement patterns are shown.

There is a tutorial on the site about how to use the maps, which I took this afternoon, now I am going to start studying the White River – Flat Tops area just to see if I can make heads or tails out of it.

From what I see, Colorado is WAY out in front of the curve as it relates to trying to help hunters understand the regulations and helping them to be successful.

Has anyone used these maps and found them beneficial – and accurate?



elkkill06's picture
Grand Slam Challenge Winner!
Location: Fruita Colorado
Joined: 02/02/2009
Posts: 2069
Your gettin it done !


I know that in the OTC units I hunt the overlays are pretty spot on. The only thing you have to take in consideration is that the elk are also going to be affected by hunting pressure. So depending on the pressure in the unit you choose may have already used that migration route to get out of dodge.

A little different perspective from elkill, (I am not your typical elk hunter)

To me it depends on the lead cow of the group, how she was taught by other lead cows throughout the years. It is not the bull that decides where they go, but the lead cow of the group. She may have been taught over many, many years (over generations) escape routes that many of us have overlooked.

I know my elk hunting spots as well as my back yard, but I still learn (or am taught by the elk) new things every time I get out there. I have seen the elk in my area do some crazy things to get away from pressure. You have to adapt quickly if are going to be successful. The elk use saddles and low spots to escape and have done so for years, but they do not use the same trails or drainages to elude us every time.

Elk hunting is one of those things that takes years of mistakes and busting your butt to become a better elk hunter. If I do not learn something everytime I am out there I am not hunting. I still concider myself more lucky than good and I have been doing this for almost 30 years.

Once you come out and do this hunt Jim you will be hooked for life. There is nothing else (to me) like it. Keep absorbing all of the knowledge you can and the best of luck !


jim boyd's picture
Grand Slam Challenge Winner!
Joined: 07/06/2010
Posts: 889
Quinton, Great observations


Great observations from someone who knows what they are talking about - no one is going to question that.

Your points are well taken - these elk are not stupid and if there is one thing I would try to learn from your comments is that they can "reason" and try to outwit us to stay alive... by seeking to "mix it up" some and keep the hunters off balance.

I know smart whitetails do some crazy things to get away... I have seen them hit the ground and crawl away on their bellies and I have seen them stand up on their hind legs and raise their heads like a periscope to get a better view...

The amount of information is overwhelming - and that combined with "what I don't know" makes for a very steep learning curve... but I simply can not wait to get out there.

I will let the first few years be my "training" - I will get better as time goes by.

Thanks for the feedback... I need it.

Coming from you.... I will consider it gospel and file it away for future use.


jaybe's picture
Grand Slam Challenge Winner!
Location: S.E. Michigan
Joined: 10/19/2010
Posts: 832
Good for Colorado!

It sounds like Colorado is really interested in having non-resident hunters come and drop some cash in their fine state. I don't mean to come off cynical, but let's face it - states are hurting, and if CO can woo some hunters (like Jim, for example) to spend their dough there instead of on that trip to Maui (or wherever) - they are wise to do so.

Obviously, one of the biggest disadvantages to hunting out-of-state is exactly what this discussion has been about - knowing the lay of the land, and therefore, having some idea of where the animals are, what terrain they live in, etc.

By providing really good online maps and other tools to help the NR hunter feel like he at least has a chance of bagging his game, CO is helping themselves balance their budget.

I have checked into Michigan's maps that are available online at the DNR website, and so far I can't see that they offer a whole lot more than the average Gazateer that you can buy at Wally World - which I carry in my vehicle at all times when hunting.

Three cheers for Colorado! I just hope the residents don't resent the influx of non's that this kind of information might cause.


Ca_Vermonster's picture
Grand Slam Challenge Winner!Moderator
Location: San Diego, CA
Joined: 07/27/2007
Posts: 5813
Colorado is really serious

Colorado is really serious about their elk herd, and do everything they can to help people out.

That's why I want to hunt there in the near future....

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