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Umpqua Hunter
10-11-2011, 09:47 PM
I have a Colorado Unit 55 3rd season deer tag this year. I have hunted it before and have helped others in that unit as well. I am interested in trying this year up around Almont. If anyone has some info they'd be willing to share, I'd appreciate it. Thanks.

Umpqua Hunter
10-23-2011, 02:02 AM
Any suggestions...I'm headed out in a couple weeks. Yay.

ceby7
10-25-2011, 10:33 PM
Unfortunately I can't help you with your question, but I'd really like to know how you do. I've been eyeing that same hunt. Good luck!

Colorado Cowboy
10-26-2011, 07:35 AM
It is now raining like hell here with a little hail too. I live at 6800' and forecast is for possible snow tonight. The high country is getting socked hard. Should have some difficulties with access, also should move the animals down some.

ceby7
12-18-2011, 12:20 PM
How'd you do?

Umpqua Hunter
12-18-2011, 09:34 PM
I got a buck on the next to the last day of the season that I am going to guess would score around 163 to 167. I would say in 5 days of hunting I saw had a dozen bucks in the 165 class, but that was the top end of what we saw. The taxidermist thought that was about the top end of what he has seen as well. The unit has great genetics, so there is always the chance for a monster. If you'd be happy with a 160 class buck with the slight possibility at a monster, that would be a good unit. I've hunted it four times now (myself and helping others), and will be giving it before any of our group will consider going back.

rickinnoco
01-18-2012, 11:05 AM
Hey Umpqua. Congratulations. How about some pictures? Now, let's put the DOW stats to the test. According to them, you would have needed 7 points as a non-resident to draw that tag last year. True? BTW, that last sentence in your last post doesn't make sense to me....would you go back to that area?

Wapiti slayer .270
01-18-2012, 12:35 PM
Have spent a considerable amount of time in Unit 55 deer hunting over the years along with chasing elk. 23 myself and dad has over 40 years. We stopped drawing tags there in late 96/97 after hunter pressure and bad management reduced the herd to nothing. Was hard pressed to find a buck bigger than a fork horn most years. We still spent our falls chasing elk during the 3rd or 4th rifle season. Once the CDOW clamped down on things that herd rebounded spectacularly. Of course the harsh winter of 07/08 did indeed take a heavy toll on the herd. DOW says 30% gone, we guess closer to 50% in some spots.

This is what we've seen. There is a gap in the age class of bucks there due to the winter kill. Alot of the uper middle age bucks died off along with some of the big boys due to being depleted from the rut. But, the young ones are now starting to get to that age. We've seen at least 3 bona fide 180's in the last year alone. Know of at least on 200" class buck that roams the area, but he spends quite a bit of time on private ground with no hunting pressure.

I agree that the 160" class deer are there and probably should be what a guy expects. But, if you know the whole unit well there are some areas that harbor bigger deer for sure. If a guy wants a truly big deer then its possible in 55 with the right scouting and hunt. Still think a 160" class is a pretty respectable deer. Not worth the Pref. Point game as of now, but if one wants a better chance at a B&C head there are by far better units in the state for that. Leastways as of right now. Gunnison will rebound soon enough. Parts of the southern 2 Gunnison basin units are already. Seen some pics taken during the 3rd rifle season this past fall of 2 whopper bucks(220" with one being a non-typical)!!!!!!!

Umpqua Hunter
01-18-2012, 12:50 PM
Hey Rick:

I think I posted this pic elsewhere on this site. This is my buck from this past fall:

http://i1101.photobucket.com/albums/g437/jimcaddock/IMG_2293.jpg

I have been on the unit 4 times during the late rifle seasons.

2005: Drew tag 3rd season rifle
2006: A family member drew 4th season rifle
2007-2008: Winter of the big winter kill (I think that was the year)
2010: Purchased 3rd season landowner tag
2011: Purchased 3rd season landowner tag

Since I have not drawn a tag since 2005 I currently have 6 points, and could draw the tag in a year or two. I know the unit pretty well and this fall I got a tip on a new spot that held a few bucks, however the quality and numbers of deer is not impressive at all. My friend who is a taxidermist said 165-170 is really the top end coming off of that unit. Before the winter kill we had at least two opportunities at 180+ bucks on each hunt. The past two years I went into the hunt thinking the genetics in the unit are great, and there should be a few good bucks left, there very well may be, but they will be tough to find.

On Unit 55 (late rifle) a 160 class buck is still very doable. However since a 160 class buck can be taken on numerous Colorado unit with less points then it takes to draw Unit 55 3rd season rifle, there are better options for using your points.

Even knowing the unit well, I wouldn't return until the quality of deer comes back.

Umpqua Hunter
01-18-2012, 12:59 PM
Well said Wapiti

Wapiti slayer .270
01-18-2012, 01:06 PM
Well said WapitiThanks and right back at you.

Don't get me wrong, these little honey holes we've found almost have to be tripped on before you see them. Then again its one thing to see them with an elk tag in the pocket, its something else thanks to Murphy to find them again with a buck tag! lol


That is an awesome buck! Guessing by the background I'm thinking you were not to far west of Almont a ways.

MOHunter
01-18-2012, 05:16 PM
On Unit 55 (late rifle) a 160 class buck is still very doable. However since a 160 class buck can be taken on numerous Colorado unit with less points then it takes to draw Unit 55 3rd season rifle, there are better options for using your points.


So which units do you think are better? I'm just getting into the point game for CO deer and would like to hunt bucks in the 160 range without waiting a decade.

Umpqua Hunter
01-18-2012, 05:38 PM
So which units do you think are better? I'm just getting into the point game for CO deer and would like to hunt bucks in the 160 range without waiting a decade.

MOHunter: I wouldn't want to give specific unit numbers on a public forum. Sometimes it only takes a few extra applicants to ruin the draw odds. The unit I have my eye on can be drawn with 4 points. If you are just starting out, build up 3 or 4 points and keep doing your homework, its worth it.

Also consider eastern Montana. A 150+ buck in very doable on numerous units that can be drawn with only a couple years of applying. There is a lot of Block Management land where you can get permission to hunt private land. Deer numbers are down after a tough winter a year or so ago, but they will come back. If you draw on a year you can't go I recall you can return the tag and get 80% of your money back.

rickinnoco
01-18-2012, 06:25 PM
Here's what I know Umpqua...THAT deer would look really nice on my wall! I'd take him no matter what unit I was in. Very nice. Congrats.

Umpqua Hunter
01-18-2012, 10:44 PM
Thanks Rick, here is a couple more Unit 55 bucks. They are all in that 160-165 class:

From 2005:

http://i1101.photobucket.com/albums/g437/jimcaddock/IMG_0439.jpg

From 2009:

http://i1101.photobucket.com/albums/g437/jimcaddock/IMG_0018.jpg


Again, I think there are a number of Colorado units that take a lot less points then Unit 55 that you can consistently take bucks in this class.

Shooter
01-20-2012, 09:58 PM
It's easy to spot a north west guy with a fear no fish hat on. Nice bucks by the way.

Umpqua Hunter
01-20-2012, 10:02 PM
It's easy to spot a north west guy with a fear no fish hat on. Nice bucks by the way.

Thanks Shooter....love those hats....and a name like Umpqua is a dead giveaway too.