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  1. #1
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    First time hunter. Help me decide which hunt codes, please.

    Hi,

    I am a Colorado resident. I've done a lot of backpacking. Now I'd like to do some armed backpacking and hopefully bag a mule deer or elk. I have never hunted before. I have no preference pts. Just got my hunter safety card. I own a .270.

    My wife is newly pregnant. If things go well, we'll be having our second child this November. So, she wants me to draw an early tag. I see there is one early season mule deer rifle tag I might be able to draw without pts for unit 47 in the Hunter/Fryingpan wilderness.

    I am also looking at the muzzleloader season (though I haven't fired one since a sidelock in scout camp 25 years ago). It appears I can draw both buck deer and bull elk tags with no points for units 45 (Holy Cross wilderness), 18 (Troublesome roadless area), and 15 (Sarvis Creek wilderness) I think I have a 60% chance for bull elk tags in 43 (Maroon Bells wilderness) and units 75/751 (Weminuche) and I can draw buck deer tags in both of them. Finally, I could also draw an either sex elk tag for unit 14 (Mt. Zierkel wilderness) and a doe tag just in case (but not a buck tag).

    I know that is a lot of options. Sorry. I would like to hunt up as high as I can (as long as there are still deer or elk there) as I like alpine scenery. I would also like to get away from other hunters as much as possible. Any areas with beaver ponds or small streams where a fly rod would come in handy would also be a plus just in case I don't see any big game.

    I am also interested in any recommendations for an outfitter or someone who could help me pack out an elk. I don't have the cash to pay for a guided hunt, but I hope to find someone I can contact for help packing out an animal. I'm sure I can handle a mule deer myself over 2-3 trips, but I don't know if I can get an elk out of the backcountry before the meat spoils.

    Thanks in advance for your thoughts! Not looking for specific areas (unless you're willing to share), just your opinions about these units in general.

  2. #2
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    you need to go in unit 67 middle fork of Saguache towards machine lake. When I lived in CO we would do back pack hunts there in the first rifle season and muzzle loader season. A great unit to hunt mule deer there during muzzle loader season.BIG bucks !!

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by alaska2go View Post
    you need to go in unit 67 middle fork of Saguache towards machine lake. When I lived in CO we would do back pack hunts there in the first rifle season and muzzle loader season. A great unit to hunt mule deer there during muzzle loader season.BIG bucks !!
    I mean unit 68

  4. #4
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    I don't know much about the areas you are talking about. Hunting is tough when you first start out. You should do what the rest of us did, draw an area and research the crap out of it. Once summer comes start scouting the unit every chance you get. The early season archery and muzzle loader tags are nice because the weather is mild. Good luck, make sure you call biologists and wardens for the unit you draw and pick their brain.
    A bad day in the woods is better than a good day at work.
    Shoot the best, Shoot PSE!

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by In God We Trust View Post
    I don't know much about the areas you are talking about. Hunting is tough when you first start out. You should do what the rest of us did, draw an area and research the crap out of it. Once summer comes start scouting the unit every chance you get. The early season archery and muzzle loader tags are nice because the weather is mild. Good luck, make sure you call biologists and wardens for the unit you draw and pick their brain.
    I can't agree more.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by In God We Trust View Post
    Hunting is tough when you first start out. You should do what the rest of us did, draw an area and research the crap out of it. Once summer comes start scouting the unit every chance you get. The early season archery and muzzle loader tags are nice because the weather is mild. Good luck, make sure you call biologists and wardens for the unit you draw and pick their brain.
    x2, research, research, research! to the OP, it's always fun learning a new area, but frustrating at the same time. If you can't get in there to scout and learn the land, your first trip is kind of like a scouting/hunting trip. It will still be an adventure but obviously the better you know the area, the more the odds are in your favor. Good luck
    -NRA Life Member
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  7. #7
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    Thanks, Guys. I put in for EM044O1M and DM035O1M. I'm planning on hunting the Holy Cross wilderness in unit 45. Maybe Grouse Mtn. Maybe up high in the cross creek drainage. I am excited to research the area and get up there myself. I've never been. I am planning on going solo because I don't know a single other person who hunts. Therefore, I would like to find a packing service who could help me get a deer or elk out of the wilderness. I tried Half Moon Outfitters and Packing, but they only work east of Redcliff. Does anyone know someone I could hire to help?

  8. #8
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    You should get the 1st choice bull tag for unit 44. 100% got it last year as a 1st choice, and 57 got it as a 2nd choice. Pretty good odds for you.

    You better hope so, because you have really bad odds of getting unit 35 as a 2nd choice. Nobody got it last year.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Old Hunter View Post
    You should get the 1st choice bull tag for unit 44. 100% got it last year as a 1st choice, and 57 got it as a 2nd choice. Pretty good odds for you.

    You better hope so, because you have really bad odds of getting unit 35 as a 2nd choice. Nobody got it last year.
    The unit 35 tag is for deer and covers unit 45 so I can hunt both species.

  10. #10
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    Oops! I missed that. I thought both were for elk.

    Sometimes I read too fast.

 

 

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