Montana's Bundled Archery Districts
Well now that the elk permit applications are available, it is disappointing to see that the MT FWP has bundled all the limited entry districts, other than the breaks, into one allotment of tags (900-15). It seems counter productive to the reasoning in which they put those areas into limited entry, which was to control the number of hunters that could descend upon a district. However, now that 3700 people can draw the archery tag and have access to 15 different hunting districts, what is to stop a large portion of them hunting the same district? Generally speaking, I can already see what is going to happen this fall. A lot of people who draw the tag are going to look at all the districts they have access to, and inevitably a lot of them will arrive in the Snowies and Little Snowies during the first couple of weeks in search of one of the big bulls that live in the area. If these areas get a ton of pressure during the first two weeks, the elk will do what elk do, and will travel on the N-Bar and 3-Bars to escape the hunting pressure. I just don't see the logic in providing 3700 people with access to any one district that is included in the bundle. Granted not all 3700 will hunt the same area, but I guarantee a majority of them will during the first part of the season. This reminds me of when the Breaks had unlimited tags, and soon became overrun with hunters, and thus they had to put a limit on the tags for those areas. Granted what I am speaking of isn't unlimited, but with 3700 tags being allotted, it sure may look like the Breaks did during those prior years. If the FWP was so set in bundling all the districts together they might as well have included the Breaks, at least it would have spread out the hunting pressure a lot better.