Colorado GMU 521 Elk question (s)

fmajor

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 8, 2009
Messages
552
Location
USA
Hi all -

I'm giving thought to hunting GMU 521 for elk this year in most likely the 3rd season.

Does anyone have any tips - not asking for honey-hole info. Anything like herd size/health and general population pockets would be super helpful.

I've googled and read quite a bit, but the info is all more than a few years old....

Unfortunately, the CODW site hasn't posted anything for the 2014 harvest. I have studied the data for the previous few years, but that's not hugely helpful given the past few weird winters we've had here (and the west side has different weather than here on the front range).

I've looked over the CODW atlas and google earth for areas of interest, but geography alone isn't sufficient.

I've also called the biologist assigned to 521, but he's not gotten back with me....

Huge thanks up front for your help!
 

cohunter14

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 11, 2012
Messages
874
Location
Colorado
fmajor, it sounds like you are from Colorado, so you probably know a few of these things, but her eis what I would do. First, harvest stats help, but they aren't 100% accurate. Sometimes they are far from it, so just be aware.

Second, pay attention to the CPW atlas, especially the migration routes. If you are hunting 3rd season, a lot is going to depend on the weather both during your season and previous to it.

Last, I would be patient with the wildlife officer. This time of year is their 'off season' I think, so they aren't always quick to get back to you.

Wish I could be of more help with Unit 521, but haven't hunted there. Either way, good luck to you!
 

aj427ci

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2013
Messages
125
Location
Colorado
Unit 521 gets a lot of pressure from my experience. I hunted second season last year and the elk were few and far between. But it was really hot for that time of year. I got into elk but by the time I caught up with them they were on private.
 

fmajor

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 8, 2009
Messages
552
Location
USA
THanks Tom!!!

Some *very* interesting numbers in there. Downloaded for study later on.

Looks like I better get my application in!
 

fmajor

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 8, 2009
Messages
552
Location
USA
fmajor, it sounds like you are from Colorado, so you probably know a few of these things, but her eis what I would do. First, harvest stats help, but they aren't 100% accurate. Sometimes they are far from it, so just be aware.

Second, pay attention to the CPW atlas, especially the migration routes. If you are hunting 3rd season, a lot is going to depend on the weather both during your season and previous to it.

Last, I would be patient with the wildlife officer. This time of year is their 'off season' I think, so they aren't always quick to get back to you.

Wish I could be of more help with Unit 521, but haven't hunted there. Either way, good luck to you!

Thanks! That's some good advice. I hope to put something other than "tag" in the freezer so intel is both helpful and appreciated.
 

jeffdvorak13

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 10, 2015
Messages
55
fmajor how did your hunt go last year in GMU 521? I am hunting there this year 2nd rifle and like you keep finding info that's a few years old on the web. Any info would be much appreciated. This will be my first elk hunt so I am trying to do as much research/map study as possible.

Thank you.
 

fmajor

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 8, 2009
Messages
552
Location
USA
As it worked out, i hunted GMU54 and managed tag soup.....

Sorry, i don't have better info....

Good luck on your hunt!
 

DevilDOG_O341

Member
Joined
Jul 6, 2011
Messages
23
Location
Fayetteville, AR
What part of 521 are you hunting? I've hunted out of Horse Ranch Park (off CO 12 west of Crested Butte) the last few years. We've seen elk, but you have got to get high (10,000 ft or higher) especially if the weather has been warmer with no snow. Look for large wide drainage areas. When they say you should spend more time glassing then hiking, it's true. I learned the hard way my first trip in 2011. In 2013, 2014 it paid off getting started early and hiking up to a good observation area and then spending several hours glassing.
 

jeffdvorak13

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 10, 2015
Messages
55
Looks like you are talking about the southeast corner of 521 where is borders GMU 55. We will be on the opposite side (northwest) of 521 somewhere between Crater Peak and Chalk Mountain.

Thanks for the info.
 

jason21

Active Member
Joined
Jan 12, 2015
Messages
36
curious to how it went, ive hunted 521 for the past 11 years. This year will be my first year not hunting in 12 years, and its killing me inside.
 

fmajor

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 8, 2009
Messages
552
Location
USA
What part of 521 are you hunting? I've hunted out of Horse Ranch Park (off CO 12 west of Crested Butte) the last few years. We've seen elk, but you have got to get high (10,000 ft or higher) especially if the weather has been warmer with no snow. Look for large wide drainage areas. When they say you should spend more time glassing then hiking, it's true. I learned the hard way my first trip in 2011. In 2013, 2014 it paid off getting started early and hiking up to a good observation area and then spending several hours glassing.

Looks like you are talking about the southeast corner of 521 where is borders GMU 55. We will be on the opposite side (northwest) of 521 somewhere between Crater Peak and Chalk Mountain.

Thanks for the info.

curious to how it went, ive hunted 521 for the past 11 years. This year will be my first year not hunting in 12 years, and its killing me inside.

As it worked out, that year i hunted GMU54. All the elk where i was hunting had gotten onto the private ranch (Castleton Ranch i believe) and so i enjoyed some beautiful, warm fall weather and some tag soup to wash it down with.
 

sourdough44

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2009
Messages
317
Location
Wisconsin
We just got back from 521(not O.Poster). We managed two bulls between the 4 of us. It was mostly warm & dry, not a lot of shooting by the many hunters in the area. The two days we had bulls down much of the time was spent packing the meat out of the woods. Those Bulls are very big when down.

It was an interesting time, especially for a 1st time. One was a neck shot at 30 yards with a 300WSM, the other 100 yards with a 30-06, both one shot kills.
 

Attachments

  • image.jpg
    image.jpg
    409 KB · Views: 211
Top