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Outfitter help

 
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  #1  
Old 11-01-2011, 01:45 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2010
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Outfitter help

Thinking about applying for an Elk tag in New Mexico for 2012. This will be probably be a one shot deal for me as I am a retired blue colar worker from Iowa. My buddy and I have both rifles and Muzzeloaders so we can do either. We don't care if we shoot enormous bulls, but would like to get a decent one. We have narrowed our outfitter search to USO, Timberline, Trophy Ridge or San Francisco Outfitters. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
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  #2  
Old 11-01-2011, 02:03 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Fairfax County, Va
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Re: Outfitter help

First, if this is a once-in-a-lifetime hunt, why have you limited your self to 4 outfitters?
My advice to you is get their reference list for the last 3 years of people who DID NOT KILL, and ONLY CALL those people who DID NOT kill any thing. They will give you a better picture of the outfitter than the guy who killed a monster, he will be happy even the only food was MRE's.
You need to talk to as many as you can, phone calls are CHEAP compared to the hunt, some will blame the outfitter for every thing including the weather.
Have a list of questions, but don't grill the guy, I have found that most hunters LOVE to talk about hunts they have been on, so most of the calls will be fun.
One of the questions I ask if the guy talks about how tough it was, "do you think you would have had a better hunt if you have been in better condition"?
GOOD LUCK, have fun, and remember get in the best physical condition you can, it will make all the difference.

Dave
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  #3  
Old 11-01-2011, 05:00 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Holland, MI
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Re: Outfitter help

New Mexico tags are tough to get in many of the areas. I will warn you that if next year is the "only year" then look seriously at the percentage of applicants drawn in the area where you apply. The alternative is that many of the NM outfitters will sell you a landowner tag but in the more desirable areas those cost about $5000 on top of the cost of the hunt which puts the hunt at about $10000 plus expenses. If you don't care if your hunt is any time in the next 1-5 years then you are probably OK to keep trying for a draw.

Trophy Ridge told us that the draw success for their area is about 20%, and NM has no preference point system. So, next year our chances of drawing are no better than they were this year. As you can tell, we did not draw for 2011. If we had I would not be here right now.
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Old 11-01-2011, 07:45 PM
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Posts: 24
Re: Outfitter help

Dirtball, thanks for the reply. I have looked at a bunch of outfitters and narrowed it down to these 4. I based it on price, kill percentage and references. I was just thinking this forum would make it a little easier.

Dr. Vette,
Thanks for the reply. I don't have to go this year, so we will probably wait for a public draw. Are you hunting with Trophy Ridge? What made you decide on them? They are in my top 2. Do they apply for you so you have a little better chance of success?
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  #5  
Old 11-01-2011, 10:37 PM
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Location: Holland, MI
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Re: Outfitter help

Yes, they were our choice based on reviews on many sites as well as discussions with them. They applied but I don't think it matters who fills out the form online. The results are the same either way.

Allegedly NM is going to give a slight preference to nonresidents who are hiring an outfitter in 2012, but I'm not holding my breath. I suspect we will look into backup options for 2012 if we aren't chosen in NM.
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  #6  
Old 11-02-2011, 12:24 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2010
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Re: Outfitter help

It sounds like they are going give a little preference to Non-residents who are going through an outfitter. Every little bit helps I guess. I really like Trophy Ridge too. They are at the top of my list above Timberline. I guess I need to talk to both.

Thanks for the help. Let me know how you turn out.

Joegun
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  #7  
Old 11-02-2011, 12:49 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Fairfax County, Va
Posts: 699
Re: Outfitter help

Quote:
Originally Posted by joegun View Post
It sounds like they are going give a little preference to Non-residents who are going through an outfitter. Every little bit helps I guess. I really like Trophy Ridge too. They are at the top of my list above Timberline. I guess I need to talk to both.

Thanks for the help. Let me know how you turn out.

Joegun
Actually it is going to get worse, NM used to give NR 22% of the tags, 12% to NR with and outfitter and 10% to those with no outfitter. Next year the total goes down to, I think 12% of the total tags to NR, AND you have to buy, (no refund) a NR hunting licence just to get into the draw.

Dave
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"How a politician stands on the Second Amendment tells you how he or she views you as an individual... as a trustworthy and productive citizen, or as part of an unruly crowd that needs to be lorded, controlled, supervised, and taken care of."
--Rep. Suzanna Gratia Hupp (TX)
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