Max NR Elk points in WY - now what?

blackdog

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Joined
Jan 14, 2011
Messages
305
Location
Portland, OR
With max (9) non resident elk points going into this years Wyoming elk draw, I'm really wondering what to do with my points. I will be doing this unguided for sure, without horses, and would likely try to hunt at least part of the time during archery season as well as rifle season, even if that meant two trips.

One option is 62 which has been recommended to me by some acquaintances. I could draw this unit this year and although rough, I believe that I'm physically fit enough to handle that portion. The unit though sounds heavily timbered and full of grizzlies, two characteristics that I'm not overly fond of. 61 late and 63/63 both seem to fall into a very same category as well.

Another option is one of the desert units like 100. While the odds aren't great (8% last year i think with max its), it sounds like it would be a much more 'fun' hunt with open country a guy could glass and cover lots of ground in. While the top end bulls may not be as big, it sounds like you might be able to expect to see more elk.

Another option would be one of the central units like 7 or 16. Both sound like they have lots of elk but private issues a guy would have to work around with a GPS chip.

Lastly perhaps would be something like a unit 45 hunt in the Bighorns. Perhaps not the 'blue chip' unit some of the others are, but no grizzlies, plenty of public land, and perhaps WAY better elk hunting than this Oregonian could find anywhere in my home state.

So thoughts on the best or better direction to pursue? Or any Wyoming residents want to volunteer to take me with them into a wilderness unit to chase a true giant??? ;)

Thanks for any insight you might have to offer.
 

muleman1953

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Oct 17, 2010
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215
Location
Nebraska
62 is a great unit I drew it in 2012 with max points. I hunted it most of the archery season with very little hunting pressure. I was there for about the first week of rifle also & the hunting pressure really starts coming in 1-2 days before the rifle season starts. Was a great hunt, some very remote areas to get away by yourself, I did have mules which helped because I was 59 then, but If your young & in great shape you can diy.The only thing I did'nt care for was a good number of Grizzlies in this area, I didn't have any issues but there was sign everywhere & made me watching my back at all times, if you had someone with you it would be more relaxed. A 350 bull is doable but there definatly not behind every tree, you've got to have the time & put forth the effort to make it happen. I did kill a bull opening morning of rifle I'd been after the last week of archery but had'nt sealed the deal.
I've hunted unit 100 several years ago & they do kill some nice Bulls there. I hunted nearly the entire rifle season there & never did come across anything respectable (6x6)
There you basically drive miles & miles of country & glass where you can, definatly not your high country elk hunt, at that time I was told there were about 125 head of resident elk dispersed in that country. I did kill a raghorn 5x5 the last day.
I've never hunted the 30-31 units but heard good thinks & I've been through the country. It would be very similar to hunting unit 100.
Make the best of your points & good luck to you!
 

J300UM

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Joined
Dec 17, 2007
Messages
150
Unfortunately some of the best elk hunting in the state is in grizzly country. The bighorn mountains offer some decent elk hunting outside grizzly country (areas 40,41,38 come to mind). A kid I know stuck a nice 360 class bull in 38 two years ago. My uncle lived in area 40 and took several very respectable bulls there over the years and he doesn't like to get too far from the truck heater. Area 7 has some great genetics possibly the best in the state but access there is spotty and the landowners know they can charge a fortune for access. It is also very over hunted in my opinion so with limited public land and a lot of hunters even during archery season, it's hard to find yourself away from the crowd. Good luck in your draw wherever you decide!
 

Triple BB

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Joined
Dec 12, 2002
Messages
675
Location
Wyoming
I think 16 is one of the premier elk area's in the state. The type 2 tag is less crowded with access to a large habitat management area in Dec & January for bulls. Most of the mountain is public ground. Some big bulls have been coming off the mtn in recent years. Two years I ago I saw pic's of 380 class bull as well as several in the 330 - 340 range. Best I saw last year was a 363 bull. One landowner that outfits for elk is the Q Creek Ranch. You can check out their website for representative bulls from the area...
 

Elkhunter1983

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Joined
Nov 1, 2011
Messages
486
Location
Ranchester, WY
Man looks like you have some decisions in front of you. Are you looking to archery or rifle hunt? If rifle hunting, are you wanting to hunt a migration looking through lots of elk or wanting to hunt them earlier catching some possible rutting activity? Those should be your determining factors. Also what kind of camp setup you will be doing. Happy choosing, im having the same problem choosing a moose area in wyo as i should draw the next few years. Oh and to add to your dilemna I wouldnt leave 58 off of your list not many tags and a very long season would be worth burning your points on.
 

Magnumitis

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Aug 14, 2010
Messages
408
Count my vote towards 58. The quality is definitely there and you cannot beat those season dates.
 

SansSouci

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Oct 12, 2014
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287
Location
Orange County, CA
blackdog,

My advice is to reconsider your DIY, especially if you can get into a legitimate trophy area. You might not get another chance for a trophy bull. If you can get in a premium area, my advice is to do it, especially if it's a rut hunt, and hiring a guide.
 

blackdog

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Joined
Jan 14, 2011
Messages
305
Location
Portland, OR
I greatly appreciate all the input and advice. However, I made the decision for this year really easy and have decided not to apply again and just get another point. Instead, a buddy and I are going to try and cash out our Arizona points on an archery hunt down there. And if not, I've got a really good archery hunt here at home that I can do as well.

Unfortunately, or fortunately, I'll be back at this dilemma again next year though. Max points can't ever really be a bad spot to be in. :D
 
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