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  1. #1
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    Archery Hunt in the Big Horns

    I am going to buy a left over Muley tag for Region Y, and possibly a left over antlerless elk tag for area 38 if I have enough funds left before heading out to the Big Horns for the Archery opener. The main objective for this trip, is going to be to scout for the archery elk tag that I should draw next year in unit 38, and to scout for the unit 1 moose tag that I will hopefully draw in 3-4 years. I have never been out to the Big Horns to hunt, and have never been on a DIY out of state hunt except for three antelope hunts on private land near Gillette. I would like to know what to expect as far as hunting pressure, numbers of animals, quality of animals, camp sites, and where is the best place to pick up ice, food, and supplies before setting up camp. I will be making this trip on my own, and I have never been north of Gillette so I am very anxious to see what the Big Horns look like. My main question is where I should set up camp at. I have heard of the Black Bear Camp ground near Burgess Junction, but I would prefer something a little more remote. Is it legal to set up camp anywhere on National Forest Land? I appoligize if this is a very ignorant question, but like I mentioned ealier this is my first DIY hunt on public ground. I appreciate any words of advice, and look forward to pointing my truck west and spending two weeks scouting and hunting in early September.

    Thanks,

    brookhunter19

  2. #2
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    Brookhunter, You can get all the items you need at two locations; the main gas station in Dayton or the Bear Lodge at Burgess Junction. I would think prices will be a little cheaper down in Dayton. My experience in the area tells me the western edge of Region Y holds more elk. I have hunted this region for the last five years, always for deer, and generally northeast of Bear Lodge. In those five trips I've only seen three elk. Hunting pressure in the whole area is rather intense as are the ATVers. Plan to walk in off of the roads to escape other people. As far as camping, there are numerous roadside primitive campsites throughout the area. You don't have to camp in a campground. Check National Forest regulations for camping as there may be restrictions as to how far off of the road you can take you vehicle, I believe it to be 50ft. or 50yds. I'm not sure.

  3. #3
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    [QUOTE=schlaggerman;9506] My experience in the area tells me the western edge of Region Y holds more elk. I have hunted this region for the last five years, always for deer, and generally northeast of Bear Lodge. In those five trips I've only seen three elk. QUOTE]
    I dont know where you have been hunting but there are elk all over the unit. Southern Part holds alot of the elk and has easy access...eastern part is loaded with elk. THe elk are all over the place...i would say the eastern part of bearlodge and south central of the unit. Camping...There are some camping spots behind bearlodge. Goodluck in your adventures...
    T

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    I haven't hunted south of the highway, mostly to the north of the Bear Lodge. Again, I haven't seen many elk and my hunting companions haven't either. We have been hunting mule deer and as such spent the majority of our time in deer habitat which could explain why we haven't seen many elk. Also where we hunted seemed to have lots of recreational ATVers which the elk won't tolerate.

  5. #5
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    lol..You shouldn't have any trouble finding elk anywhere in area 38. There is a fair amount of ATV activity. I've watch many people drive their wheelers right by multiple groups od elk and never even know they are there. The elk are used to ATV's and tolerate them just fine. If you want to have a fair chance a getting one the best thing you can do is get off your ATV and go hunt. They aren't gonna stand in the road and come to you. Come in the best shape you can. The bighorns will eat your lunch.

  6. #6
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    +1 Elkcrazedfrk...it will eat your lunch...agree get off roads but i have seen alot of elk and good deer south of the highway 14a.

  7. #7
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    In my opinion you would be better off stopping in Sheridan and going to like walmart to get your supplies.
    You're gonna love the Big Horns. Especially compared to Gillette!!
    There are tons of areas to camp and you will definitely have no problem finding elk in 38.
    But someone correct me if I'm wrong, isn't 38 wilderness area? If you're an out of stater you have to be accompanied by a Wyoming resident or guide.

  8. #8
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    Also, I'm West Side for life. Lol west of Bear Lodge is where I hunt and there is definitely no shortage of elk. Elkcrazedfrk can point you in the direction of a whole lotta cows... Believe me, I know this first hand. plan on being in good shape and actually going and walking around. That's how you get away from all the people and pressure and get into the good elk.

  9. #9
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    I'm pretty sure that there is no wilderness in 38. There is some in 37 though.
    One question for you Wyoming guys or anyone else who has hunted in 38 before. It sounds like there are quite a few elk in 38 but the success rate only hovers around 20-25%. Are most guys just too lazy to get out there a mile or two to find elk or are the elk tricky to pin down???? I will be hunting Region Y for deer this year and might apply for 38 elk next year so I am just curious. Thanks.

  10. #10
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    Yes, there are a lot of hunters in 38 that try to road hunt. There is some nasty terrain in parts of 38 and if you are willing to dive right in, you will have no problem.

 

 

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