I'm heading out of state into 704 / 705 for a DIY mule deer hunt in mid Nov. Unfortunately I don't have the time to do any real scouting and I'm going in blind and that's fine. I've studdied BLM maps, Delorme Atlas, Google earth and at this point I've located some areas that I'm going to try.
Not my first time hunting Monatana as I did hunt the Dillon area last year for elk and antelope. Did not get an elk but did get a nice goat. Anyway, while I was in soutwest Montana I did see several camps on public land but that was October and it was a different kind of area all together.
I'm bringing a small trailer and I plan to hike into either BLM or Block Management areas to locate deer. Since I don't see any "campgrounds" real close to these areas, I'm hoping to that I could set up on a peice of BLM land close to the areas I want to hunt. I know it will be cold, but I don't know much about the area as far as where or if you could make a decent camp.
Do the roads usually hold up well? I do have a 4x4 with chains. Are there lots of areas where people do camp on BLM land in the southeast? Am I crazy to try it in this area at this time of year? I have not tried to make any reservations yet on the block managment areas but I'm guessing they probably would not allow overnighters?
Appreciate any info. I don't have much big game info to share as I am still relatively new to "out of state" big game hunting. I have done several DIY floats flyfishing on the Kenai for silvers, rainbows and dolly's that could share.
Roads with gravel should be just fine, watch out though for all dirt or two-track roads. I wouldn't pull a trailer too far on these roads. Your best bet is to check the forcast just before leaving and make a decision based on the weather. In mid Nov. you could be hunting in a foot of snow (last year) or it could be in the 70's. I've seen if both ways. You shouldn't have a problem finding a camping spot, just be aware you can only pull off the road 300ft and the camping limit is 16 days. Also, you are correct, most Block Management areas don't allow camping, (you'll want to check each area), but I usually just camp nearby on some public land and drive to the area each day.
Where are you planning on going in the south east. I grew up in 705. Might be able to help you out.
Thanks ceby7. That is good to know. I will be all over the weather forcast for sure, before I leave, and while I am there.
outdoors, PM sent.
larrylur how did you do we are planning a trip for the same thing in the fall of 2012 . coming from ohio so its all new any advise would be great
I did well I think. I was hunting by myself for the first three days and ended up shooting this one, before my other friend arrived. The weather was very cold (-10 at night) the first couple days. My pop up trailer was ok with the furnace, a space heater and electric blanket under my sleeping bag. I would not advise a pop up for the entire trip as the winds out there can ruin your stay. Have a back up plan or hotel room located and reserved if you don't have a hard side trailer. You can stay on BLM land but don't get to far off the main roads like the other guys in this post have said. Lots of block management and public land (BLM, national forrest, state) in the area. Get your self some BLM maps for that area. Also get a Delorme Gazeteer for Montana and study both for areas to hunt.
Best advise I could give you to find a good buck is to bring a game cart and or pack out system. Hike into the BLM areas or block management areas and get off the roads.
Another friend to help me drag it out would have been nice. The spot I was in, I never saw a boot print and I was hiking in only about a mile or two. I saw many more deer while hiking slow and glassing, than I did driving in and out of these areas.
One other thing. This was my first out of state mule deer hunt and my first mulie. The local hunters that I ran into said that deer numbers were way down from the previous year. They would say things like, "there are usually three time this many deer". Not sure how bad the numbers were down but I guess I was lucky to get on this one maybe.
Very nice buck. Congrats!
Hotels are at a premium due to the oil boom in ND and east MT. Advise making your reservations a year ahead of time.