Drop camp elk hunts

Whitetail312

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Jun 15, 2018
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119
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Loganville, GA
Has anyone ever done either a semi guided or a drop camp style hunt? I’m looking to do one of the two in the 2020 season. If you have ever been on a hunt this style and have any information or guide suggestions, I would be very much appreciative of that information!
 

Charles De Salme

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Mar 29, 2018
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Lakeside AZ
Many years ago I used to do a drop camp out of Crawford Colorado in the Western Elk Wilderness. Beautiful area. We were fortunate enough to rent horses and keep them in camp with us. Hard work but well worth the hassle of keeping the horses in camp.

Make sure you are in great of shape and get there a few days early to get used to the altitude.

If you go through a guide service try and have an agreement what they would charge to pack out an animal. Also, see if the guide service will check on your status during the hunt or are they just gonna drop you off and pick you up at the end of the season.
 

Whitetail312

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Jun 15, 2018
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Loganville, GA
I have, it depends on your budget and where you draw! what state are you wanting to hunt some elk in?
Colorado more than likely. They’re the easiest to get an over the counter tag. And I’m trying to be budget minded but I’m not on a super strict budget. I’m a well experienced hunter and don’t want to have a fully guided hunt.
 

elk guide 45

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Oct 7, 2017
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Not true, we drop drop camp hunters in as good of a spot as our guided hunters. We actually have a better profit margin on drop camp hunts as we can handle more of them at one time. Most of our guided hunts are 2 hunters 1 guide. And they tie us up for 7-10 days for just 2 hunters. By the time we supply camp, food, horses, and all amenities. We come out way better on drop camps. If you know how to hunt you will do just fine this way.
If you are in an outfitters area and he is the one choosing the spike camp spot it won't be the best he has to offer. He will save that for guided hunters.
 

Highvoltage

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Feb 10, 2019
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326
Location
West virginia
I’ve always entertained the idea of a drop camp hunt because of the price but after meeting a guide one night in a bar in Colorado I dismissed the idea. He basically told me that if they have customers willing to pay big money for a certain size bull his boss will make them hunt all around the particular drainage the bull is living in. He said I’m in the mountains all year, I know where the big bulls and mule deer are. So if your a budget minded hunter like I am I would feel more comfortable doing my homework and making my own success than letting an outfitter take my money and lead me on a wild goose chase for a nice bull. With that being said I know there are great outfitters and guides who work extremely hard to get their customer a shot but after the conversation it left a bad taste when it comes to outfitters for me. Again those types of services are there so use caution. I hope no outfitter would ever do this to a client but it happens. Good luck to you Colorado is beautiful country.
 

Whitetail312

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Jun 15, 2018
Messages
119
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Loganville, GA
Not true, we drop drop camp hunters in as good of a spot as our guided hunters. We actually have a better profit margin on drop camp hunts as we can handle more of them at one time. Most of our guided hunts are 2 hunters 1 guide. And they tie us up for 7-10 days for just 2 hunters. By the time we supply camp, food, horses, and all amenities. We come out way better on drop camps. If you know how to hunt you will do just fine this way.
Would you mind sending me a PM and talking about some options for hunts?
 

Muddyboots

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Feb 7, 2013
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Michigan
Did the drop camp deal and a couple thoughts to consider:
  1. Is the location of the drop camp within easy reach of other hunters "walking" in or even on motorized vehicles? I had a drop camp where opening day we had multiple groups setting up on the spring we were using. The added pressure in the area pushed animals over 5 miles away where we found them.
  2. Does it have a good acceptable potable water nearby such as a clean spring? Granted you will still filter but the availability of water is really something needed day to day without expending energy to do so.
  3. Does the outfitter provide basic amenities such as cots, cooking utensils, cooking stove, wood stove, wood for stove? This is all extra gear that can be taken up with stuff you need to hunt better with. Know what gear is provided in writing up front so no surprises when you reach the camp.
  4. What is the placement of the drop camp relative to prevailing winds and weather?
  5. Already stated but what do they charge to pack animal from kill sight? This can be huge physical task depending upon where you drop an animal and probably worth the extra cost.
  6. How often do they check in on you? Every other day? Do they have a message drop spot you can leave a written instruction like "Get me the heck out of here!" or "Need help to pack out animal".
  7. Does the outfitter have a sat phone so when they check in on you they can call for immediate help if necessary. My last hunt the outfitter had a sat phone and saved the life of one of his wranglers that had a terrible crash on horseback and needed immediate medivac to survive.
 

elk guide 45

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Oct 7, 2017
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Our drop camps are 100 percent on deeded ground no other hunters at all. If the outfitter you are using is reputable they will provide you with a spot that suits your needs. But I do agree you need to verify just what services you are getting. For example we provide a full camp equiped with everything except food. And sleeping bags and personal items. We set exact times that we discuss to check in on you. Not just for you but to make sure our equipment is being cared for. Depending on what the hunter wants we also include packing in and out all gear and animals harvested. We have in the past had hunters who wanted a limited service hunt. By this we dropped them off with all there gear and at the end packed them back out. More of a tresspas hunt.
Another thing to clarify up front is all fees and what if any up charges will there be for what services.
We guided on the national Forest years back and the outfitter has no way to guarantee that you will not see other hunters. It is public land and beyond there control. That's why we went to only hunting private deeded ground.
Do your homework before you send deposits to any outfitter, and get the hunt you want and the services you want in the price, before you book.
Also call the state they are outfitting in and make sure they are a registered outfitter who is bonded and insured, With an outfitters license, Before you send any deposits. Trust me there are tons of guys who claim to be outfitters looking to make a few bucks off of out of state hunters who throw a camp together set it up in a handy spot then accept no liability when something goes south. Happy hunting!
 

WeiserBucks

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Aug 16, 2016
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I did a drop camp hunt years ago with J BAR H in Colorado. To this day it's one of the best hunts I've ever had . Their operation was 1st class in every respect and we killed 5 elk within a mile of the camp . One of the guys in our party actually shot his bull from camp using a chair for a rest !
 

Whitetail312

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Jun 15, 2018
Messages
119
Location
Loganville, GA
I did a drop camp hunt years ago with J BAR H in Colorado. To this day it's one of the best hunts I've ever had . Their operation was 1st class in every respect and we killed 5 elk within a mile of the camp . One of the guys in our party actually shot his bull from camp using a chair for a rest !
That’s awesome! I’ll definitely have to look into them. If anyone has any other recommendations on outfitters I would love to hear your experience
 

JRY46

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Feb 24, 2004
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158
Location
ERIE, PA
If your not hell bent on hunting Colorado you should check out KIOWA in NM. A buddy of mine has been there 4 times and we went there back about 3 years ago. Great camp, great food and we saw lots of elk. I understand now New Mexico changed there rules and you actually get a guide for your group for 2 days of your hunt. We are going back in the next year or 2 and the price is really fair.
 

Whitetail312

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Jun 15, 2018
Messages
119
Location
Loganville, GA
If your not hell bent on hunting Colorado you should check out KIOWA in NM. A buddy of mine has been there 4 times and we went there back about 3 years ago. Great camp, great food and we saw lots of elk. I understand now New Mexico changed there rules and you actually get a guide for your group for 2 days of your hunt. We are going back in the next year or 2 and the price is really fair.
They look really good, NM is a draw state unfortunately and I have no points or preference points either. But I’m going to contact them!
 
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