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  1. #1
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    Unit 56 or 55 for archery elk?

    Looking at possibly coming to Idaho for the archery elk season. We have been looking at units 56 (1st choice) and 55(2nd choice). Have been told central and southern parts of 56 will be good for elk in Sept. How is the hunting pressure here? It appears to have plenty of good access due to quite a few roads, this always worries me a little. Easy access usually translates into lots of hunters. We are willing to do a little backpacking in to escape the crowds if need be. Can this be done in this area? Are elk number good here? Not looking for honey holes but a head start with info would sure be helpful. Thanks.

  2. #2
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    Have you looked at draw odds for the Archery hunt in 55? There are only 5 tags, so non-res guys are drawing at an even 0%. There is no option to choose 56 or 55, you have to apply for a shared unit (which for archery is 55 and 57). No archery elk hunt in unit 56 unfortunately. 54 is arguably the premier elk hunt in the state. 1 non-res hunter might be lucky enough to draw 54 archery elk, but the odds are less than 2%, and IDFG will throw out your app for the hunt if more than 1 non-res is applying. If you like to archery hunt elk in Idaho, you will probably want to just go hunt an OTC unit. There are a lot of hunters in every unit in Idaho - a downside of OTC tag sales. The upside is you can roll into Idaho with your buddy, grab a few groceries and tags, and off you go. The possibility of a fantastic hunt with friends and family and guaranteed tags are pretty tough to argue with- Good luck out there.

  3. #3
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    Hey- there is an archery OTC hunt in 56, I just got a PM from a member who shot a nice bull in that unit. He said there are bulls in 56, but they hunted Private ground. My apologies- good luck.

  4. #4
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    Could be wrong but I thought in units with less then 10 tags NR's could draw 1 tag?

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    I could be wrong but my partner talked to a Chad Wipperman, Sr. Conservation Officer with Idaho Game & Fish. I have just re-read Chad's email to us. Chad specifically mentioned units 56 & 57 as OTC early season archery elk areas. He called them "A-tags". Am I reading something incorrectly? Hate to put to much research effort into an area I can't hunt. He also mentioned good herd numbers in central to southern unit 56. Thought I might get some additional info from guys who have had boots on the ground in this area.

  6. #6
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    You can get an A tag and hunt 56 archery for any elk from aug 30-sept 30. 57 is controlled hunts only. A tags are more for archery and B tags are more for rifle. Some areas only have A tags OTC.

  7. #7
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    I archery hunted for both deer and elk in 56 last fall primarily in the central to southern portions of the unit. On opening day I ran into three yearling bulls, spikes and forked horn raggies. Got within range of one of the bulls but was busted by another when I drew. I did not see another elk for the rest of the hunt. I spent over a week hunting, hiking my tail off, but came home disappointed. I will be hunting elsewhere this fall. It seemed like most of the pressure was concentrated in the northern half of the unit where there was more vegetation, water. Also be aware of the road access as the forest service is ready and willing to hand out citations. You can get away from the roads with a little effort but you are correct, there are roads everywhere! Hope that helps.

  8. #8
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    55 56 and 57 are otc tags. 54 is a controled tag. hit it late in the hunt and you will do allright...

 

 

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