Best State for Mule Deer?

Discussion in 'Deer Hunting' started by MSLRHunter, Nov 4, 2011.

  1. MSLRHunter

    MSLRHunter Well-Known Member

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    Question for our western hunting experts, what is the best state for a non-resident to draw for big mule deer? I know there are some monsters killed in Arizona but it takes a lifetime to draw the tag, so I guess I'm talking about areas that you can realistically draw in 3-5 years. I have heard some talk of mule deer numbers in some parts of Wyoming and a few other states being way down due to the severe winter last year. I am going to get serious about applying in several good areas, I just need some advice to go along with my research. Thanks in advance!
     
  2. ShooterMedic

    ShooterMedic Well-Known Member

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    That Depends on what you call a BIG mule deer.

    The best state for muleys according to the number of B&C entrys is Colorado.
    Utah is also a good state to find a monster but it will take you a few years to draw. Idaho and Montana ans wyoming also have great areas. where you can find some 190 class mule deer.
    If you bow hunt Nevada offers some awsome early season high country hunting that is very physical but you see alot of deer.

    Another area to consider is Alberta you need a guide but you can find some really good deer.

    Eastmans hunting journals every year produce a mule deer hunting guide that out lines the best areas in all of the westerns states and the chances for drawing a tag. I have used it in the past and found it very informative.

    I know this post is very vage but it may offer a starting place
     

  3. TheHardWay

    TheHardWay Well-Known Member

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    FWIW, Eastman's stated that every unit in Colorado is capable of producing a 200" buck. Of course you will have have hunt your butt off in some places.
     
  4. MSLRHunter

    MSLRHunter Well-Known Member

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    Thanks guys! I just subscribed to Eastmans about a month ago, waiting for my first issue. When I say big muley I mean a good chance for a 170 and up. Again, thanks for the tips!
     
  5. Gondini

    Gondini Well-Known Member

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    Colorado,Utah, Montana Are all great but the odds of draw is what is going to kill you, i put in for good areas in 2 out of the three and got ( 0 ) nothing, you might have to put in alot of states.
     
  6. TheHardWay

    TheHardWay Well-Known Member

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    That's what the points systems are in effect for. To draw a coveted tag in a good unit, you are going to have to play the game for a few years. The OP has it right, you have to have a 3-5 year plan, not expect to draw a trophy unit the first year.
     
  7. bearpaw

    bearpaw Well-Known Member

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    Can't speak for Id and Wy, but 190 inch deer in MT are pretty few and far between, even in the exceptional hard to draw areas, I know several muley crazy guys that take up to 2 weeks a year and travel up to 7 hours to hunt and have yet to break 180.
     
  8. MSLRHunter

    MSLRHunter Well-Known Member

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    Exactly! My plan is to find the top 3 or 4 spots and start applying and hopefully get to where I can get drawn for a good tag every couple of years. Thanks for the responses, as a guy that lives east, I love these discussions on western hunting!
     
  9. Gondini

    Gondini Well-Known Member

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    3-5 year plan sounds good, but i want to hunt, but you get the points, in nevada you can buy points with out putin in for the draw. nevada also has draw odds and the size deer that are shot in that area, ut does not show that. I have my spots all maped out and maybe in 3-5 years I might get to hunt.
     
  10. TheHardWay

    TheHardWay Well-Known Member

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    I'm with ya...I still want to hunt, but build points at the same time. That is what is nice about CO. On your application, you can put down 4 choices for hunt codes (Colorado is 100% draw for mule deer no matter the season or weapon type...no over the counter tags except for what is left over after the draw)
    What I have been doing is putting the preference point code down for my first choice to gain points, then for 2nd, 3rd, and 4th choices, I enter for hunts that are more easily drawn. So I can still hunt, just not have as great of a chance of harvesting a monster.
     
  11. durak

    durak Well-Known Member

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    FYI - there are no good deer left in Utah! - try CO, NV, ID, WY, or MT.....:rolleyes:
     
  12. wasgas

    wasgas Well-Known Member

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    Arizona has three A$#holes on a quad for each deer, this year for archery I got PO'd and went home because to many idiots on each ridge with an ATV and a bow. Last year they took my blind, many of the rifle hunt are now 700 plus tags per unit which decreases the success rate significantly, many of the guys are shooting spikes and it seems like a bad recipe for future hunts.
     
  13. Gondini

    Gondini Well-Known Member

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    That is what i disliked about ut both archery and rifle too many huntersin one area, they are changing it for next year. Nv is better you know how many hunters are in one area and only one season at a time.(un like ut, I was elk hunting with my nephew during deer season. lots of people.)
     
  14. eshorebwhntr

    eshorebwhntr Well-Known Member

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    Somewhere in nearly every state there are areas that produce quality animals. Generally speaking any area in any given state that consistently produces good numbers of quality deer are going to be a little tough to draw. UT has started to make changes in their management techniques that should return quality to the herds but that being said rifle tags can take you a long time to draw. But that can be true for just about any western state. AZ in a quality unit is almost a pipe dream to try and draw with the tag numbers allocated to non-residents. CO is probably the best option all around. Tons of good units with good deer numbers in addition to landowner tags that can be purchased and used to hunt public land. All western states have a few coveted/prized units that year in/year out produce some real big deer (220-240 type stuff). Those units can take 15 years to draw in some cases. If your serious about it, start building points in a few states and in a couple years you'll be in a good position to start applying for some quality units.

    If you want to go on a good hunt in an area that has the habitat and genetics capable of producing nice deer look at Region G in NW Wyoming. You can draw every 2-3 years and this year there was buck taken out of there that will go down as one of the greatest mulies to ever live. If you want to read more about it Google "Magnum" or "Non-Typical Outfitters" and check out the pics. I went this year with Greys River Trophies and had a great hunt. I killed a 165 and my buddy got a 186. It's not an easy hunt or a garaunteed deal, but I believe (from my research anyway) that it is the best option in the west for hunting every year or every other year and having a legitimate chance everytime you go for quality deer.

    Check out my article on this forum if you have time.

    http://www.longrangehunting.com/forums/f84/first-mule-deer-hunt-region-g-79281/

    Good luck.