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Discussion in 'Antelope Hunting' started by daleracefan, Sep 25, 2011.
looking to do a diy hunt in 2012, where to start. blm maps? areas to hunt?
Where too start? ... get lucky enough to draw a tag! Lol
Browse the gampe population / success rate stats the dept. of wildlife puts out and try to match it up with accessible blm land would be my suggestion. To know wich units to put in for
I can't give much more advise. I cheat a little, my old man is a former guide and has invaluable contacts.
He also is priceless as a spotter. He can call em out faster than. I can send em
The easiest thing to do is to subscribe to some of the magazines that put info like that in their issues. I have used "The Huntin' Fool" and "Eastmans Hunting Journal" in the past, but I'm sure there are others. The thing that I've learned is that individual units can change quickly. Things like tough winters, increased tag numbers, etc. can make things tough. But, the state of Wyoming, in general, is absolutely full of antelope. I've read that there are more antelope in the state of Wyoming than the rest of the North American population.
I would start with the game and fish website: % success, changes in tag numbers over the last couple years, points required, etc. Eastmans Hunting Journal really spells all of this out in their members research supplement - this (I believe) is also available on their website to look up past advice - just because someone says a unit or an area is hot now, I think it is good to look back over several years to see if the unit or area typically produces what you're after.
Once you zero in on a unit or area - get the blm maps. This will show you land ownership and road locations for the most part. Roads on BLM land can and do change and maps are not updated every year.
Once you've got all of that down, get the best spotting scope you can afford and be ready to look over a lot of bucks before you find what you want. Patience and good glass can lead to a diy book head, but it takes a lot of patience and skill at judging what you're looking at.
I hope that helps!
Also, don't get too discouraged if an area you're interested in has a lot of private land in it. The game and fish website shows certain portions of private that are public accessible for hunting.
In addition to that, some ranchers (I think) will let you hunt on their land if you ask.
Sorry, one more crucial thing that I forgot - BE PREPARED TO SHOOT IN THE WIND!
6.5 made some excellent points. Iwas not aware of the magazines that might help. And in my experience he is abdolutely right about glassing. I prefer a top end set of binocs but that is just my prefrence.
Things not to hunt without...
Good spotting scope or binos
Capable spotter to call the shots while you settle in
a range finder and wind meter that your spotter can operate
a rifle system capable of bucking wyo. wind
Heck I prefer a 22-250 with fast 40 grain loads on texas coyotes but my wyoming huntin buddy shoots a 6mm with 80- 100 grain loads for his... for good reason
First off welcome to the LRHB Daleracefan !
Second - If your gonna "do it yourself" your gonna have to give us a few more details so we can better help you
Previeous experience......Your first post, we aint got to know ya yet.
I am going to give you some homework on this, I used to hand feed everyone but they get really demanding about it.
The Bureau of Land Management has 1/1000 maps for every quadrangle in the United States west of the Mississippi river. This will help you figure out what is public and what is not.
Checkerboard public private is not public it is private. You can not use private land to access public land. Unless you have permission from the land owner. So ignore a lot of the areas in South Central Wyoming around Rawlins.
Colorado, New Mexico, Utah, and Texas have land owner permits. With the down swing in the economy these tags are cheaper than ever. Beware of New Mexico's 2 or 3 day season.
Even though Montana is bigger than Wyoming it has much less public land, the Areas around Miles City are exceptions.
Call the biologist in charge of antelope in the western states you want to hunt in, and ask them their thoughts. Remember this could be a BLM, State, Forest Service, or Wild Life Refuge guy.
Nevada, Arizona, and California have really premium draw tags.
I shoot a 25.06 -100 grain. I've hunted Mulies up around Devil's tower.