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  1. #1
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    OTC non-resident colorado elk unit help

    Hey there, I'm new to the forum and my father and I were looking to plan an out of state DIY elk hunt. We looked at many states and decided on Colorado. We have zero points so an OTC tag is what we are looking at. We are both seasoned hunters and are in excellent physical condition, but we have never hunted in Colorado nor have we hunted elk. We are not looking for a trophy. We want to hunt the unit that gives us the best opportunity to harvest an elk. We looked into many units specifically those in the White River National Forest and north western Colorado. We like the elk population, but hear it can be crowded with hunters. We will be hunting on public land without a guide or horses. We will be on foot. Also we would be hunting in the 2nd or 3rd rifle season depending on unit choice. What unit, in your opinion, has the best odds of tagging an elk considering we will be hunting public land on foot in the 2nd or 3rd rifle season? Also what season in that unit has the best opportunity and how should we hunt that unit? Any info will be greatly appreciated and taken into consideration.

    Thank you, John Pulskamp

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    Welcome to the form! Sounds like you are on the right track. Most OTC elk units generally get alot of hunters. You can look at the statistics on the CO web page to get an idea of how many hunters each unit gets and success rates. Good luck!

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  4. #3
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    Welcome to forum. You are talking a lot of possibilities for hunt options. +1 on checking out the Colorado hunt statistics. They haven't released the 2013 results yet, but you can research the last few years for the seasons and units you are speaking of. Here is a link to the Colorado stats:

    https://wildlife.state.co.us/Hunting...tatistics.aspx

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  6. #4
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    Thank you both for the info! I looked at the stats and saw that of the OTC units 13, 214, 441, 851, 12, 5, and some others had some of the higher success rates (for rifle) in the past 4 years. That's great, but I wonder how many of the elk killed in those zones were on private land and/or with an outfitter. What is the public access in these units? What other units have good success and good public access during rifle season?
    Thanks for the help, John Pulskamp

  7. #5
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    I think public land would be my biggest concern with choosing an OTC unit, next would be elk numbers. If you look at the interactive hunting maps on the CO site they will show you the public/private land in all the units. The preview maps on mytopo.com are a good resource for this too. Look for units with a good amount of public land with areas that you can get away from roads. I dont know alot about OTC CO elk hunts, this is just how I would go about narrowing down areas. You may also want to look at limited quota units that can be drawn with 0 points. They should have less hunters and you can still get an OTC tag if you dont draw.

  8. #6
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    Thank you, I will take the limited quota tags into consideration. And any info from anyone else about good OTC units in CO will be appreciated.

  9. #7
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    Have you considered LE units with a chance of drawing with 0 pts since you're going to be buying a license anyway?

  10. #8
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    Just recently I have, and do those units have a much better chance of success?

  11. #9
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    Hey guys, welcome. I moved here to SW Co from So Cal 14 years ago when I retired and definately understand your dilema. IMHO 2nd rifle in most areas is a pretty tough situation. Lots of hunters and usually the weather is warmer (but you never know). If you can't hunt early, I would hunt as late as possible. You need to take advantage of the weather if possible. Pray for snow and hope the elk start moving. Hunt 4th season if possible.

    If I were coming to Colorado for the first time hunting, I would opt for a cow tag. First...the units that have late season cow tags are ones that the state feels have too many elk. Second you can use the hunt as a learning experience and increase your odds of taking home some meat. Thats what I did my first couple of hunts here many years ago. Use your cow tags as a 2nd choice and buy a point as first choice.

    Read you are from Bakersfield...used to have some pretty good pheasant and waterfowl hunting there. Shot a few deer at Greenhorn too. Lived in Downey until I retired, love Colorado....couldn't ever go back!
    Last edited by Colorado Cowboy; 01-05-2014 at 08:01 AM.
    Colorado Cowboy
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  12. #10
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    I would definitely opt for a cow tag in a draw unit. Chances of success or even seeing elk will be much greater. Try unit 61 any season cow tag. These hunts hover around 50% success rate. Plenty of public land. If your still a youth, you might draw, your dad probably won't without any points. You would have to look to see for sure. If you don't draw you can always go OTC instead.

 

 

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