OTC Utah Elk 9-17 October


Well-Known Member
Oct 1, 2017
Just purchased my tags and looking for some advice for over the counter elk hunting in Utah during their rifle season from 9-17 October. My buddy and I, (both active duty Marine Corps Officers) are planning on backpack hunting those 2 weeks. Right now we're thinking of going to either the North or South Slope, but looking for your educated opinions and advice on what would be a good area to head to if those aren't suggested.

Neither of us will be able to get out there for any scouting, so we're not exactly sure where to head. We've got lots of experience sleeping outside and carrying heavy packs, but this will be the first big backpacking hunt for both of us.

I'll be shooting a 28 Nosler and he'll have a 300WM, and we're both comfortable taking some longer range shots (less than 800 yards though).

Any additional info on MUST have gear, or what NOT to take would be beneficial as well.



Well-Known Member
Feb 2, 2013
Northern Utah
We hunt the south slope of the Unita's east of the Wilderness area. Terrain ranges from lodgepole thickets to open meadows. some areas are very steep, others more gentle. We generally find the fewer hunters the better hunting we have. Like most places the more remote or difficult terrain reduces the number of hunters. Weather can range from very nice warm days, cool nights to snow, ice and mud, or stated another way, highly variable. Last three years have been nice. This year who knows what will be the case. So far it is hot and very dry. If the dry weather holds then the elk tend to gravitate to good water sources. The big fly in the mix is forest fires. After the hunt starts, generally the elk go into "hiding". The big challenge is the sequence of hunts is archery, muzzle loaders, then rifle. In Utah muzzle loaders include the Remington pseudo muzzle loaders with scopes.... Nuff of that.
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