I've been looking into some units that have leftovers and also some of the OTC units. 3rd season dates seem to work best with my schedule for this year. I'm a newbie to backpack hunting and I plan to base out of a truck camp with maybe a 1-2 night spike out if I get into some elk. It seems the units in NW corner and North central have good elk numbers but also a lot of pressure from hunters. So basically I've been researching the South central and SW units.
Every time I think I have my mind made up on an area, I find a little more info about another area. Most of the units that have leftovers are just a 1st or 4th season tag for OTC 2nd and 3rd season units. The other leftovers are for LE units but success rates are generally awful. I can't find much info on GMU 79 but there aren't any leftovers for 3rd season this year anyway. I've considered GMUs 82 and 74 but it seems to be more early season terrain at high elevation. I'm not comfortable with idea of doing a deep backcountry hunt (solo) on my first elk hunt. That seems to knock those off the list. GMUs 62, 65, 70, 71 and 711 seem to have gentler terrain but tons of hunters. I'm still looking hard at a couple of these units. GMU 60 seems to have a little less pressure but seems to be a weather dependent migration unit that could be a bust without snow.
The main thing that I am looking for is a quality hunt with a chance to see some elk and not be overrun with other hunters. I would like decent success rates but that's not a top priority. Just a good overall experience with a chance at a respectable bull. Anybody want to shed some light or have any tips on making my final decision? Or am I just overthinking it?