In this episode Jason Carter and Adam Bronson of Epic Outdoors talk about hunting Mule Deer in Colorado. Colorado has long been one of our favorite states for deer. In this episode they cover everything from winter loss to top units. They also cover new and noteworthy changes to the regulations for 2017. If you have any interest in hunting Colorado, or if you already hunt Colorado, this podcast will be of interest to you.

Disclaimer: this podcast has been transcribed from the original audio and likely contains errors. This transcription does not reflect the views and opinions of Epic Outdoors LLC. Please consult the original audio with any concerns.

00:00:01:29 –> 00:00:03:03
Colorado’s coming up quick.

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You know, it’s a preference point state, so it’s somewhat predictable.

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Any unit in the state can produce a big deer.

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This is one of the best deer hunts I’ve ever been on in my life.

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Anything to do with Western Big Games.

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To the Epic Outdoors Podcast, powered by Under Armour.

00:00:22:02 –> 00:01:15:27
Hey everybody. Jason Carter here with the Epic Outdoors Podcast. Got Adam Bronson here with Epic Outdoors as well. He is my partner here at Epic. Anyway, just bringing you out another podcast today we’re gonna be talking about some exciting stuff in Colorado. First off, wanna thank Under Armour for sponsoring these podcasts. They’re an awesome partner of ours and have been on board since the inception of the podcast. As well as some other projects we’ve got going on. Really appreciate them. Just want to thank them again. Anyway, as we get started, Colorado’s coming up quick. We’ve got an April 4th deadline, postmarked April 4th. A lot of that doesn’t, you know, matter when it’s an online application such as deer, elk can, antelope, but for the paper applications for non-residents being sheep, goat, and moose definitely needs to be postmarked by April 4th. So, anyway, pretty exciting. Colorado’s one of those states super popular here in the west.

00:01:17:08 –> 00:02:24:19
Maybe one of the most talked about states, especially when it comes to mule deer. So today, Adam and I, we’ve hunted Colorado for years and years and years and we just want to discuss a lot of the different options and availability and, and different things that we found when hunting Colorado Mule deer. And just give you a few things to think about. A lot of you guys already have plans and you already know where you’re gonna go and maybe even have somewhat of a tradition on what you do with you and your buddies or your families. But anyway, just give you a few of the things that we found and maybe it’ll help you guys out a little bit. So as we get started, just wanna let you know, we do have a monthly publication, December through June, covers all the Western states, drawing odds, kill percentages, best units, and gives you an in-depth analysis on the different things available. So as we cover Colorado, we’ll be really light on all the other species, but a lot of that information on sheep, goat, moose, elk, antelope can be found in the magazine. Of course, we are available to visit with it about on the phone, but, but today’s will be really centered around mule deer.

00:02:24:20 –> 00:03:09:24
Yeah, there’s no question that I think this time of year and maybe all year we filled probably more phone calls it feels like for Colorado Deer questions. And what should I do with my points than maybe anything else? I don’t know how, what you’d have to say about that, but I know it’s on our front burner right now, so it maybe feels like that. But it really, it is one of those states that has, you know, a lot of hunts you can draw on zero to two points and you know, it’s a preference point state, so it’s somewhat predictable. There’s no randomness to their draw for non-residents. You know, you gotta have X number of points before you even got a chance. So we’re always filled in call. It feels like more than anything else, all year long on Colorado Deer. Does it seem like that to

00:03:09:24 –> 00:03:49:20
You? Oh yeah, a hundred percent. Like we’re dealing with that every day. And you know, the interesting thing about Colorado, like you say, you can really tell when you’re gonna draw it’s preference point state. So there’s just no randomness. You can kind of tell from looking at last year’s odds the year before, the year before. And you can kind of predict, unless you know, and some of these real low tag units, obviously one or two applicants coming over with a big bunch of points can sure change the odds. But generally speaking, we’ve found that you can really predict the odds and can tell when you can go, well, for example, if you were to, you know, look at a 22 third or something, eight or nine points and you come in with 12, you know you’re gonna get it. We’ve

00:03:49:20 –> 00:05:10:01
Been in Colorado for 12 or 14 maybe years now, it feels like since they went to the draw in the late 98 or 99, whenever it was unit by unit and started cutting tags. And immediately within four or five years things started every started hearing about Colorado. We, I know my first year was 2004 and you know, been a big part of my plans at least almost every year since. And I know yours too, Jason, so a lot’s changed and we’ll talk a little bit about that. But things, everybody’s expectations I think got really of Colorado got really formed from about 2003 to 2007. It was on everybody’s, wow, I gotta get there. Whether it be drawing a tag, buying a landowner tag. Then we’ve had a big winner in oh 7, 0 8 things maybe moderated some and you know, now we’re maybe dealt with, I don’t know the best way I’d characterize it. It’s just a lot of good genetics over there. I dunno about as good as anywhere. Good deer numbers, varied seasons, you know, a lot of different seasons, three rifle seasons for deer in some, some units late into November. And so it gives a guy a lot of options to consider archery m loader and two, three rifle hunts. So there’s a lot to talk about when it comes to deer.

00:05:10:05 –> 00:05:55:20
You’re exactly right. Back in the day when, like you said, pre prera back before, you know, they actually went to a limited draw for most things. You know, I had a lot of points built up and actually the best unit in the state back then was 1 42 Penns Canyon out on the plains, which is a public land unit. And you know, I went on that drought year of 1996 and it was a December rifle hunt. It was, of course I was back in college, that’s a whole nother story. Back in college. Had a truck that basically couldn’t make it, had to repair it a couple times, getting there, repaired a couple times, getting back, maybe even a new tire or two ’cause the tire rods. And anyway, I had some issues, but nevertheless, went out there, did see what I felt like was a 210 or 15 inch steer.

00:05:55:27 –> 00:06:50:02
Didn’t kill it. I remember him to this day I’ve still got a, you know, picture of him in my mind, big inline on a big frame. So, but, but cool. But the frustrating part about that is they told us where we could camp. We all kind of had to camp together, check in and out, somewhat regular. And it was just, I don’t know, it just was different. You know, I don’t, when I want to go hunting, I want to go hunting and I don’t want to camp with everybody necessarily. And so anyway, dealt with some of that, experienced that. But you know, once they, you know, once we started hunting the other part of the, of the state, which is basically the, you know, the western slope, it was kind of changed things and, and of course what other state offers, you know, November rifle hunts in any number, let alone, I mean we’re extremely careful when we do that here in Utah. Extremely careful. Very rarely do we do it,

00:06:50:05 –> 00:08:01:00
Especially where you got trophy quality. I mean, Montana gives ’em on the general hunts and, and I understand there’s, there’s some trophy deer to be had here and there on those. But Colorado does it western slope wide with one to two rifle seasons in November with areas where you are legitimately hunting 180 plus deer on. And that’s almost unheard of for the points required to draw. Of course you draw a strip tag, you draw places like that light hunt November once in your lifetime and you get that special experience. But Colorado, you can do it every single year if you want. You can go on, you know, units that take zero to one point or buy a cheap landowner tag or go every two to three years, or every five to six or every 10 to 12, whatever, and hunt November every time. I think we will get into that a little bit later. I think. I think that some of the underrated seasons might be some of those earlier seasons. Personally, the first season, which is October 21 to 29 or 30 this year, some years if you don’t get the rutt kicking in, might as well be there first and hunt these bucks first if you don’t have a lot of high country, you know, obviously archery and muzz loader are earlier than that. But

00:08:01:11 –> 00:09:13:06
Yeah, if you look past, you know, in the past years, sometimes we’ll get that early snowstorm in that that’s what they call the second hunt, which in reality is the first rifle deer hunt in most units. And which, you know, the first rifle hunt being for elk only. So let’s call it the second, which is October 21st of 29th. But anyway, a lot of times you’ll get that early snow storm and that can be when the big, big deer are killed. I know, you know, I’ve hunted 44 on the second and it was snow, it was awesome. It was, well it was cold anyway, you know, we would access some of this country by an hour, hour and a half, four-wheeler ride, getting back in onto Belly Lake Ridge and just working all that country behind the private and you’re hunting the public. But just, you know, getting in there was somewhat tough. You’re, you’re at negative 10 to zero degrees, four wheeler dressed up to the hilt and you know, pushing a foot of snow at times. And so, and that was on the second, you know, so some years when you hit it right, that second requires a lot less points to draw. And in some cases such as like 35, you could draw it on a second choice and, and yet can kill sometimes the biggest deer of all the seasons. I

00:09:13:06 –> 00:09:46:26
Can think of another unit I’ve hunted 61 and that’s a unit that does not have a lot of high, high elevation country. It’s a big plateau. And if you don’t get any change in weather between the second and the third, it can be just tougher on the third. ’cause the deer just got being done, hunted for nine straight days. Nothing new weather-wise, no rud initiation. And so to some extent you might as well scout it and be the first ones there. So there’s a few units, units like that in Colorado that you might, might get away with being there first and killing the best deer of the year on the unit.

00:09:47:02 –> 00:09:52:16
And I remember, if I remember right, you killed a deer, didn’t it go like 2 0 7 on 61? Yeah, 2 0 7 or 2 0 9, I

00:09:52:16 –> 00:10:08:06
Can’t remember. And it was on the third and it was, you know, got a break, saw one big deer and killed it. And it was not set up to be a great year. It was warm and hot and I was, I was in for long line days. I, I felt until that deer stepped out. That was

00:10:08:07 –> 00:10:10:23
A lot of thick country, wasn’t it? Just super thick.

00:10:10:23 –> 00:10:56:05
It’s a lot of pinon juniper. A lot of oak. It’s rim rocky. It’s, it’s similar to a lot of southern Utah where I grew up punting. So I, I liked that, I liked, I liked that type of unit and, and knew there was big deer, great genetics. And so drew it with nine or 10 points at the time and turned out great. But you know, we’ve, we’ve alluded to a couple of units we’ve hunted on, but I, I know Jason, maybe you ought just read through the list, read through the list that not that just, these aren’t just people, aunts and uncles, friends once removed unit that we’ve heard of something about, these are units we’ve actually been in. We’ve tried to work every angle in Colorado to get a tag. Yeah, there’s no question. Whether it be a draw tag, landlord tag, leftover tags, whatever, but been

00:10:56:05 –> 00:11:56:04
There a bunch. There’s no, yeah, there’s no question. I mean we’ve spent a lot of time, you know, I’ve spent a lot of time in 21, which is notably one of the best units in the state. I know, you know, for quite some time it was, it was considered to be the best then it had, you know, a lot of down years here. Now it’s coming back seems to be doing really good. But we spent time in 21, 35, 43, 68, you know, 70 25, 34, 44, 1 42, 1 36, I mean, spent some time in Gunnison, 54 66. I know you’ve spent some time in 77, 71, 7 11. I’ve been in 10 a bit. Of course we’ve both been in 40 quite a bit and I know you’ve hunted 60 and there’s just, I mean there’s just a lot, you know, a lot of different options. That’s what I love about Colorado. Even like we’re talking about 61, you know, you killed a great buck on the third. The th that is arguably one of the toughest units in the state to hunt

00:11:56:22 –> 00:12:07:02
For the points required to, to draw it. We probably had more people go hunt that and be disappointed with their 10 or 11 points than maybe any other unit. I can, I can hear feedback on

00:12:07:06 –> 00:12:09:24
It’ll make a man outta you. Yeah, that’s not one of those, it’s just not easier.

00:12:09:26 –> 00:12:12:17
It’s not drink Pepsi, drive the winter rains and shoot bucks.

00:12:12:22 –> 00:12:34:28
The nice thing about 61, it’s good when there’s a lot of winter kill, which we will get into that, you know, not necessarily this year, but you know, of course Gunnison did receive a fair bit of snow and, and it did crush some deer. But, but 60 one’s always gonna have a big deer, always gonna have a big deer. It’s thick. They have escapement, they don’t have necessarily the fourth, you know, it’s just limited,

00:12:35:02 –> 00:12:45:11
Limited entry for elk, which cuts down on the general season or the amount of elk hunters in the field with you when you got a draw unit for elk. So you don’t have the over the counter hunters. So That’s

00:12:45:11 –> 00:12:46:17
Right and that’s consideration,

00:12:46:25 –> 00:12:47:01

00:12:47:01 –> 00:12:57:00
Know, because I know a lot, most of these units were punted. I mean 21 included 35 68, you know, a lot of these, you know, 25 stuff, they’re, you’ve got elk hunters

00:12:57:12 –> 00:13:10:17
Probably unit 61 and 40 are the only exceptions that have limited draw for elk, everything else. Yep. Maybe unit 10. Yeah. But I mean, everything else, they’re over the counter with you on the second and third and they’re everywhere.

00:13:10:27 –> 00:13:23:01
A lot of good people out hunting and they’re trying to, you know, of course you can buy an over the counter elk tagging and you and I have seen some awesome bulls on these over the counter, you know, elk tag units that when we’re, while we’re hunting deer, I’ve seen bulls in 44. 44.

00:13:23:02 –> 00:13:41:05
Yeah. I’ve seen in 34 and 43, 3 10 to three 30 bulls, you know. Yeah. On over the counter tags. I’ve never, never bought one. ’cause I’m there to hunt deer and you know, I didn’t wanna get Yeah. You know, that packing a bull out for two days and take it away from my deer hunt. But could have if you ever felt

00:13:41:05 –> 00:14:36:20
Like it. Yeah. Well some of the best units in the state, I mean, I want to kind of dive into, I wanna really get to the meat and potatoes of, and, and I know you do too. We’ve been discussing it quite a bit and of course we’re answering questions every day. But I, I do wanna talk about, you know, good better, best type stuff and, and just basically, you know, let’s, you know, start out with some of the better, better, best type units. I mean, of course, you know, guys with high point options we’re, you know, we’re fans of 21 third. I mean that’s one of those hunts. It’s an easy hunt, lots of good access, lots of public, you know, and right now there’s just a lot of good deer guys that are looking for 180 plus deer definitely are gonna have a good hunt in 21, especially on the third. The third you’ve got a lot, you know, more limited tag numbers and you know, you, you are gonna see Rudd action it mostly, generally speaking and you’re not, it really doesn’t require heavy weather to push those deer down. You can’t get that high in the unit,

00:14:36:26 –> 00:15:18:02
You know, and it’s going to take 19 to 20 points to draw for a non-resident gonna take 11 or more for residents. So that’s, that’s a pretty significant number of points for residents and I think that’s, that’s important to point out as we start talking about these best ones. I, I wouldn’t say these are the ones that I would tell people with three or four points to start holding out for. No, I would tell ’em exact opposite of that. You’ll never, you, it may take you 30 years to catch up to that. Yeah. If you were to chase ’em right now. So we’re talking to people that have 18 to 20 right now on, on this subset of units, you know, I know 44 is probably another, we’re gonna have to talk about very, very low tag numbers. You’ve hunted that yourself. But third and fourth, it’s gonna take 20 plus points to draw

00:15:18:13 –> 00:15:56:10
It is and yeah, I think we should just dive into it. I mean 44 is one of the most, most talked about, it’s, it, there’s no question. I mean, percentage wise you look at the tags, you figure, let’s just say there’s, you know, 20 tags a given year, it’s between 15 and 20, let’s say 20 for this year, third and fourth. What the crazy thing about it is, is if you do a percentage on the number of 200 inch deer taken, it might be three or four of those bucks are over 200 percentage wise, there’s not another unit in the state that’ll do it. So it’s hard not to say 44 is the best unit in the state percentage wise. I i, I challenge anybody to come up with something better. I’d love to know about it. Deer

00:15:56:15 –> 00:15:57:04
Killed. Yeah.

00:15:57:08 –> 00:16:19:04
But having said that, one of the toughest units in the state to hunt, you know, we gotta, you got a lot of private, it’s very, you gotta be aggressive, you gotta use your G P s with the cards and know your boundaries of the private. You gotta be prepared. It’s one of those things that if it snows you, it’s high country. It’s just high country. They’re not gonna be down at 4,000 feet. They’re, if

00:16:19:18 –> 00:16:25:11
They’re, if they do down there at six or seven Yeah. They’re in golf courses and subdivisions and they’re off limits.

00:16:25:11 –> 00:16:47:24
Yeah. They’re in eagle, you know, or whatever gypsum. So you know you can and and that’s fine. You and you can find ’em there. There again the, the lower you get, you’re gonna get closer to private. Yeah. And you’re gonna have private issues. So kind of crazy. Kind of a real crazy hunt to think about. We’re really careful. I know when we talk to you guys about that one, there are, there’s not necessarily an outfitter That’s right. That’s legal to hunt

00:16:47:27 –> 00:16:48:18
Public the whole

00:16:48:18 –> 00:17:10:14
Unit. The public Yeah. Whole the public land side of it. That’s right. So you’ve gotta have an outfitter that has a private, private land leased that is rare. We know of a couple of situations, but very high dollar to do that. So just be prepared. There is public to do it. You need, it needs to be, it’s somebody that’s very aggressive. It’s not a road hunt. The rutt situation where I can drive around and just enjoy having, having a lot of fun hunting,

00:17:10:24 –> 00:17:21:25
A lot of spruce fur, aspen patch timbers type stuff. Yeah. And you know, overall it’s a unit that’s gonna eat your lunch but it’s got the best genetics in all of Colorado.

00:17:22:02 –> 00:18:08:07
No question. And, and there’s places you could get lucky and people do every year. And I’m not, I’m not here to say you have to be an animal to hunt it. Just, just don’t want it. A lot of guys are disappointed that that hunt. Especially like this past year when it was hot and dry. It was tough on third and fourth to even find 180 inch deer. There again, there was a couple over 200, a couple over two 20 and that’s just what 44 does. But it was tough overall for most of the hunters. You know, my sister even years ago hunted it and you know, riding around, they saw what looked like a nice buck and then she pounded it. It’s 197 inch net, net four point. I mean that just, where else does, I mean, and that’s eagle genetics, giant typicals not, although there has been some 40 inch deer generally there, they’re like more compact.

00:18:08:08 –> 00:18:36:22
Big frames. Big frames, big frames. Beautiful deer. Yep. So, and and you know, I know guys talk about the archery and we always are looking for the inside scoop on a unit and try to really make the most outta something and do something people aren’t thinking about. And if you crunch the archery rods or the muzzle of rods in that particular unit, you’d say well it’s the best unit in the state and I can get it almost anytime I want to get it. Well just word to the wise, this one of the toughest archery muzz or hunts that there is very thick, lot of

00:18:36:22 –> 00:18:52:01
Thick timber high stuff is not, not like a 43 or some of these other units that got a lot of alpine basins and glass and bucks right out that you can stalk it’s thick trees. Yeah. And tougher to kill ’em. You know, you’re still hunting with a bow.

00:18:52:16 –> 00:19:04:28
I could see how a resident may, may do good ’cause he can spend a lot of time and just, you know, spend his whole summer there and maybe you do, yeah. Catch one of these bucks feeding out in the open and, and you pattern him or whatnot. But, but that’s a tough one.

00:19:05:14 –> 00:19:23:23
Well so what about other units in that, let’s say, let’s just call it 15 plus point range because we really kind of gotta talk about units in chunks of points like that and you know, I think after we get rid of 21 and 44, you start getting to maybe a bunch of the four season units. Yeah. So

00:19:23:25 –> 00:19:29:04
What we’re talking about there, in my opinion, tell me what you think, but we’re talking average units with great season dates. The

00:19:29:04 –> 00:19:29:19
Dates that’s

00:19:29:19 –> 00:19:30:29
Right. And low tag numbers. That’s

00:19:30:29 –> 00:20:00:24
Right. You’re, you’re dealing with little literally five to 15 tags total for some of these. A lot of these fours, you know, you’re talking like maybe 22 and 53 and 35 and yeah 63 and I don’t know, just 68, although that’s maybe getting under 15 points. But these units are all taking 15 plus points to draw ’em and they take half or almost three times as less than to draw second season.

00:20:01:04 –> 00:20:07:10
I know. Or third or or second season 35. Get this second. You can buy as a second choice. You can get it as a second choice

00:20:07:10 –> 00:20:08:06
But it takes you 15

00:20:08:22 –> 00:20:33:19
As a fourth season. So yeah. So what do you say it, the bottom line is we’re talking about units that get pounded in other seasons heavy tag numbers such as 35, 36. Unbelievable extraordinary amount of tags. I mean when you look at the third they’re showing like 620 tags, you know, so and and there and it tells you there’s a lot of deer it, it can sustain it but you know, it’s not necessarily managed for giants

00:20:33:19 –> 00:20:45:12
Down the 35 or so on the fourth. That’s right. And later dates. And it is a much better chance to have one deer stick his nose outta the timber chasing a dough and Yeah. You know, one 90 type deer the

00:20:45:12 –> 00:21:27:12
First year I hunted 35 I a hundred hundred 35 on the fourth, you know, late two thousands what? 2010 ish I wanna say. Anyway, Kurt and I went over there, he killed a great deer like 180 9 or one nineties, you know, and I got lucky under judged a deer and but decided to kill him anyway fortunately. But anyway, ended up in two 12 but that was one of those, you know, just, I don’t know, just one of those. I didn’t know the unit And that’s what I love about Colorado toos. I mean to hunt the rutt, you don’t have to necessarily know the unit. You just have, it’s a numbers game for me when we’re hunting the rutt and Adam, you can, you know, chime in on this too, but when we’re hunting the rutt, we’re not necessarily pre, you can’t prec scout the rutt.

00:21:27:20 –> 00:22:05:26
You can’t prec scout the migration. So what you’re trying to do is get as close to your season as you can. Maybe you spend three or four days prec scouting on a fourth like we did in 35 and then, and then hunt it as aggressively as you can that force only five days long and you just hit it as hard as you can and, and get and get lucky. And that’s what hunt in the rutt is. It’s getting lucky now. Muzzle and archery. Yeah. We’re prec scouting. We’re working hard in Nevada, Utah and some of these other early season hunts and forcing our luck, we’re forcing it to happen. We’re earning that deer so to speak, these rutt hunts. I mean it’s just a luck game. I know you hunted a fourth this last year and I mean it’s not something you would’ve prec

00:22:05:26 –> 00:22:54:29
Scouted. No, you can’t. You you, you go hunt a fourth either burning your points with a landowner tag hoping that you get snow prior to that, a week to 10 deer days prior to that, that drives deer down lower, compresses ’em a little bit more and initiates their up. And of course last year we didn’t get that. We killed bucks over 10,000 feet in the fourth season. Which is crazy. Which is crazy and might be worth mentioning something here. Now Colorado changed their policy of turning your tag back in and getting your points back last year before that you could turn it up in, up until the day before the hunt and walk into a game and fish office Friday, go over there, scout it for three or four days prior to the third or fourth or see what the weather’s gonna be like and like yeah things are looking good and use it or don’t turn it in.

00:22:54:29 –> 00:23:50:00
Now you gotta do that 30 days prior to your hunt pretty much eliminates the ability to predict the weather, to know how much the weather’s gonna influence your hunt. You’ve gotta just roll the dice and it’s, I think we’ve got a lot more calls this year on that. It’s got a lot more people that have used that as a safety valve in the past. Me and you. Yeah, me and you both. I’ve turned tags before and basically because I had didn’t have the time and I didn’t think it was gonna be phenomenal so I just turned it in and got my points back. Now you’re gonna have to just go make something happen. And I think a lot more people are a little bit uneasy of that. And it’s just kind of the new normal of Colorado you’re gonna have to weather will make the hunts great over there. Everything will be okay. Or maybe tough if it was like last year because it was just 75 degrees in November and it was really, really tough. But you know, keep that in mind. You’re gonna have to roll the dice if you burn your points. Yeah,

00:23:50:00 –> 00:24:11:00
That’s right. And you know, and having said that, even when you do turn it back and get your points back, you actually don’t gain a point like you would in Utah or Nevada if you turn ’em back or even in, you know, the point guard program there in Arizona, you actually just go back with the points you had prera. Yep. And so you kind of lose a year, you know, talk about point creep and try to keep up with everybody

00:24:11:05 –> 00:24:26:06
If you’re on the bubble of drawing that it’s kind of a bigger gamble. If you got two to three points more than you need to draw the same tag again, then you’re probably gonna draw it again. But if you’re right on the bubble and you draw something point creep might edge you out for another year or two. Yeah. If you turn it back and don’t build a point.

00:24:26:13 –> 00:25:15:01
Yep. That’s exactly right. And so well moving along, I know, you know, so we’ve talked about some of these force and, and you know, guys with real high number of points need to use those force and, and you know there’s a few good outfitters there in Colorado we could sure help you with, you know, if you were to draw those tags or apply for those units. But, but having said that, that’s another game in and of itself because you can tell when you’re gonna draw these outfitters are booking people in advance, maybe even one to two years out planning for these clients to draw. ’cause they know how many points they have and so don’t, you know, just a word to the wise, anybody that’s listening, I mean don’t draw a tag and then look for an outfitter if you know you’re gonna draw and you can tell you’re gonna draw or you or we tell you you’re gonna draw ’cause you’ve called in and visited with us and you know you’re gonna hire somebody probably should consider sending on a deposit before you apply. Yeah,

00:25:15:01 –> 00:25:35:20
That’s right. Because people have gotten into trouble then you find out you draw then you can’t book the outfitter or any outfitter, you end up having to turn your tag back in, like we described. You lose your 375 bucks and don’t get a point for that year and you know, maybe you’re sitting out another year or two trying to draw this very same tag. So Yeah, very good point. Yeah.

00:25:36:02 –> 00:26:40:05
So some of these other high point units in the past that have been really good, we did wanna cover some of the Gunnison units and these are some of the most talked about, you know, units right now because the winter, the winter’s brutal Gunnison is known for having tough winters every for sure every 10 years. If it goes seven years without a tough winter, then you’ve got big deer and and older deer. And so anyway, this past year, I know, you know, December, January, February was abnormal, crushed the place. Definitely put in down a lot of snow. Having said that, it did warm up. They only had cold temperatures, really cold stuff there for it seems like two to three weeks, you know, and it made it fairly tough on the deer and we were all concerned and when we wrote this publication, we definitely admonished people to, to pay attention. It’s not gonna be the same. And, and we still believe that it, it won’t be the same anytime you have deer, you know, living on the pavement and then, then, then the game fish is, you know, feeding deer to keep ’em off the pavement from getting road killed, you know, you’ve gotten an an issue. Yeah. Having said that, it hasn’t crushed all the deer. Like we know there’s gonna be some mature bugs. It’s

00:26:40:05 –> 00:26:52:20
Not gonna be like 2007 and eight, but it is the one part of, of Colorado probably that is gonna have a little is higher than normal winter loss outside of a couple pockets here and there throughout the state. Yeah. Nothing widespread. Yeah,

00:26:52:24 –> 00:28:06:20
We’re definitely, you know, across the state, you know, Colorado has maybe a higher winter loss than, than a lot of other states. Especially some of these arid states like Nevada and Arizona. I mean it’s a mountainous state and it’s gonna, it’s gonna have some pockets of winter kill and, but nowhere near catastrophic Gunnison Basin, it’s popular. Those are fun units to hunt. We’ve hunted ’em, I’ve hunted 54, we’ve killed some big bucks in Gunnison. You know, and it’s one of those fun, you know, almost truck hunt type hunts at times or it can be as physical as you want it to be and hit some of that roadless country. I know 50 four’s got a lot of that. Some of these maces that you can hike up to within an, you know, an hour hike and get up in there where there’s no roads and work some of this country. So, you know, 54, 55, 66, 67, we’ve got a lot of friends that hunt 67 pretty hard. Of course 66 is known as one of the better Gunnison units in the state. But all of those have been really good in the past and, and still might, will most likely produce a few good bucks. You know, they’ve all got four season tags. I don’t know what they’re gonna do with the tag numbers, of course they’ll probably be cut but, but anyway, word to the wise on those ones. That’s

00:28:06:20 –> 00:28:44:08
Right. You know, in units that are obviously close to that, a unit that tends to always come up close to it geographically is unit 53. It’s a unit that if you’re sitting in that 12 or 13 point range, you might wanna look at that one on a third season. The biggest benefit on a third season over a fourth is you got nine days versus five and that’s almost double. And if you get a year, like last year when you don’t have incredible snow and rutt and all that, you need those days, you’re gonna need on nine days you’re gonna get your butt kicked for nine days maybe. But you five days is nowhere near enough with bad dates and

00:28:44:14 –> 00:28:48:29
Bad weather. Oh, you, you’ve experienced that firsthand. Yeah. I know you had flat out blizzard for what, two or three days? Yeah,

00:28:48:29 –> 00:29:43:20
Yeah. You could be there on a fourth and be getting snow and you’re whited out for two days and on a five day hunt that can, that can tear into your hunt a little bit. So third seasons give you more days if you know you’re gonna get some kind of weather or feel like you’re going to, or you know, just got the time to dedicate to it. You might look at something like that. Really Colorado comes down to use the points. I, I don’t think there’s anything right now. Use the, use the points to draw the best tag you think you can get. If you’re only a point or two away from getting something and you really want to go to a certain unit, okay, but these units we’re talking about 18 to 20 or 15 to 17 or 12 to 13. If you’re three to five, six points away, who knows what it’s gonna be like when you get there and there’s a lot of good hunts for whatever points you’re sitting at right now that I can’t emphasize that enough. Use the points for what you have right now. Yeah,

00:29:44:05 –> 00:30:27:18
I definitely think the same. Like what are you waiting for? I think, you know, it’s better to draw four or five times, you know, over the course of 20 years than one time. Yeah. Because even like we were talking about this past year, it was warm. You’re in unit 40, unit 44 or one of these awesome 21 and and then you end up with hot dry weather and you’re just like, geez. You know, and you’re killing the same kind of buck or even less than what you could kill on a three point unit. Yeah. You know, on a decent year or even an average year. Yeah, good year. That’s right. So, so yeah, I’m, I’m with you. We, we, we want people to use, you know, apply often and apply and to draw often and and go hunt often. So I know some of the biggest bucks in the state of Colorado have been killed in no namer units so to speak.

00:30:27:25 –> 00:31:17:00
You know, just units that are just, just got a big deer in it and, and any unit in the state can produce a big deer. It’s, it’s a factor of genetics and age and you know, it’s proven itself that there’s good genetics throughout the, throughout the state and then it’s just a matter of age. And you get one of these deer that slipped through in a unit, 41, 42, 4 21 or something crazy and all of a sudden you’ve got a 260 inch plus deer. You know. So anyway, and then some of the, you know, some of the other zones that we’ve hunted, I know, you know, I’ve hunted 68 this last year. I hunted 68 second with my boys and easy unit to draw anyway, just one of those opportunities for my boys to go hunt. I’ve hunted 68 6 81 country quite a bit over the years. I’ve killed a hundred and mid wind, mid one nineties type deer One year.

00:31:17:06 –> 00:32:23:01
Some of you guys may have seen it on the ridge TV show on the outdoor channel. We killed a 32 inch buck. That was 1 93 or 1 94. But anyway, just solid deer this last year. Tough, really tough that 68 was warm and dry, let alone being the second season. And so if you don’t get weather like we talked about earlier, that can be a tough hunt. And it was. But nevertheless we had a good hunt with my boys and got on a few four points and you know, Sean killed his first buck and so anyway, but but an easier to draw, hunt. I have hunted the fourth on 68. Interesting in there. They rut later than most places in the state from what we found. Even on that fourth, you won’t see much for rutting activity. I did kill a buck that was lip curling one year. That was mid one nineties on the fourth back when you can draw it with like five points. Yeah that was, that wasn’t that long ago. No, you know, and so things have changed a lot where, you know, there’s definitely people have, you know, been building points and all of a sudden they just, you want something and you go in and you know, point, point creep so to speak, just they jump on you pretty heavy. So. And I know you’ve spent some time in 70 and 71 some of that country. That’s

00:32:23:01 –> 00:33:07:02
Right. You know, I mean Aaron, we, we’ve hunted 61 seventies right next door to it grew up shed hunting a little bit in, in 70 and Aaron and I got landowner tags there one year, showed up to the unit to hunt for the first time. I remember the first night I was there, there I found a buck and I think I even called you about it you did. Said Dude, I found a freaking giant tonight and it was the first I was hooked crossing the road or something hooked up to my camp trailer. Yeah, that’s it. I mean I couldn’t stop for nothing. The hunt was on, it was like the Sunday night. Well anyway, it took us a day or two later. But yeah Aaron and I just basically tagged teamed that one deer and he killed. It was a 32 inch low and nineties buck on unit 70 and 70 is one of those units that I think has probably tapered off a little bit in the last 10

00:33:07:04 –> 00:33:08:04
Years. Yeah.

00:33:09:03 –> 00:33:27:29
You know, I, I would never tell you to expect a 1 90, 32 inch deer there, but it’s happened and it’s got good numbers of deer, a lot of deer flood to that low elevation of 70 to winter from 70 and 71 and sagebrush, pinion, juniper type country. Easy to get around and it’s a great hunt to take kids to things like that. But

00:33:27:29 –> 00:33:29:11
Tons of deer isn’t there but deer just

00:33:29:11 –> 00:34:18:07
A lot of deer. Lot of deer and but not as many. 1 75 plus deer I think is there Used to be. But you know that unit, unit 71 7 11, very similar 71 7 11 have a lot more private land. You know, unit 60 to the north there, kind of a migration area. Got some resident deer in it but also do that move outta Utah, full south mountains. Not overall a top end unit. I’ve been there before. Terrible terrible unit. But you know when you get something as a second choice or something back in the day or cheap plant or tag, you go make something out enough and, and you know, it does have some good genetics. It’s kind of sand itch around a bunch of good stuff and there have been some good deer killed there. But you know, these are kind of units like, you know, 25, 26, you’ve talked about 35, 36, all these type of units or units you can go every year, every two years max.

00:34:18:07 –> 00:34:47:19
Yeah, yeah. You know, maybe 70 takes 4, 5, 6 points to get there on a third. But you don’t have to wait, you know, a lot of years to go to Colorado if you want to go this year, there’s somewhere you can go this year. Yeah. That’s the good thing about Colorado. You can force your hand. You might have to burn your points on something you wouldn’t ideally like to, but if you want to go you can go. Yep. There’s units you can draw 95% chance with zero points or a hundred percent with one point or a hundred percent with two or three whatever.

00:34:47:23 –> 00:35:41:23
Yeah. And two, you know, we’ve kinda learned how to hunt Colorado over the years. It’s like at first you’re kind of apprehensive, you know, and I understand that and people are, you know, worried that they don’t know the unit and it’s definitely not their backyard. You’re usually driving one or two states to get there and, but once you get there and if you get the maps and you get set up with your G P s and the cards and, and you just start working it, I mean it’s a, it’s a deer factory. I mean that country it’s, it’s beautiful mountainous. It’s made to produce deer in a lot of them. And so anyway, it’s not rocket science, it’s just a matter of starting to work. Glass it, you know, everybody has their different hunting styles and what they like and I mean if you’re a road hunter, great, you’re probably going to do fine. Maybe do great. You know, if you, anybody that’s willing to work a little bit and get out and hike and and work it a little bit, you’re gonna do awesome. You know, know on generally speaking you’re gonna have tough hunts. We’ve had ’em. Yeah we have tough hunts but we keep going back.

00:35:42:00 –> 00:36:28:13
Well you just go because of the overriding factor of genetics and when you get the right weather. I’ve been on units like 43 and 25 and 70 when you’ve been there when the weather hits. Yeah. And you’re like, this is one of the best deer hunts I’ve ever been on in my life. And you’re on a second choice unit or a 500 or a thousand dollars land run tag unit. So you go to Colorado later in the rifle hunts because of almost the what if and like let’s face it, we don’t wanna, don’t want hunt season to be done yet. You’re yeah, let’s go to Colorado. Right. You’re gonna get another tag. Another place’s usually after Utah and usually after Nevada’s over for you where you spend a lot of your time and so get over there, see if you can time it right And you know then I’ve been on the very, very same units the very next year with terrible weather.

00:36:29:03 –> 00:36:55:24
And when I say terrible I mean just hot and warm. Yeah. And you’re wondering if you’re on the same unit. Yeah. And if you dreamed what happened there the year before, it can be that dramatic back to back years. Yeah. Based on, based on weather you’ve got a lot of high elevation, 10 to 14,000 feet peaks in a lot of these units and when deer get hung out from a little bit there all the way down to 7,000 and strung out a little bit, it can make it up for you for make it out for be a very tough feeling.

00:36:56:01 –> 00:37:16:06
Yeah, I agree a hundred percent. You know one of the units that seems to not be talked about hardly at all is at 43. And I know you’ve spent time in there, we’ve had a lot of friends, close friends that have 143, you know, real really close friends of ours and and we know there’s still big deer in there. We don’t talk about it a lot. It isn’t easy. No. Can you tell us about that a little bit?

00:37:16:06 –> 00:38:01:24
It’s got a lot of high hell, high elevation country fourteeners, a bunch of fourteeners in maroon bells. In fact it’s probably one of the better high country archery and muzzle loader type options that doesn’t take very many points to draw. Yeah. That maybe 74 units like that that you can go to very often. Well you know when you have to pull deer from some of that country down to the low country for them to show up, you’re kind of at the mercy of that weather and down low around Aspen and Carbondale and lot of, there’s a lot of alfalfa and private land. Yeah. And private land that’s not even open to hunting. And I’ve seen some 235 inch deer get brought into this. It’s a sanctuary hotel. Yeah. People shot had the right little piece of private they could hunt and it deer showed up.

00:38:02:13 –> 00:38:43:26
But I’ve also been there and warm mirror when it’s like this is, this is a waste of our time. Yeah. But I’ve got lucky and killed the 200 inch there in my very first time there and you know, went back the next year. I was alluding to that and it was like it was a ghost town. Yeah. And it was even later dates. So weather can make or break that 43 is one of those units that did I think take it on the chin in that winter of 2000, 2007, 2008. Yep. And maybe to some extents never fully gotten back on track. The tag numbers are nowhere near where they used to be back when I was something you can draw a second choice or buy cheap $500 landowner tags and that’s pretty much not there anymore.

00:38:44:12 –> 00:39:20:07
Speaking of landowner tags, I want to talk about that a little bit. One of the, you know, one of our huge topics of discussion when people call in is landowner tags. People want to get landowner tags and in Colorado, you know, of course they’ve got the unit wide landowner tags and they’ve got private only landowner tags. But you know, let’s talk about that a little bit. Like how that’s changed. I know of course they don’t allow you to broker ’em makes it tough to, you know, help people find tags. Especially for, for guys like us. But you know, also it’s changed from, you know, 15% of the total tag quota going to to land being able to be used for landowner tags to 10%. It’s changed a lot.

00:39:20:20 –> 00:40:14:01
That’s right. Yeah. So in the past when there was, let’s say there’s a hundred tags on a unit, there used to be 15 of ’em set aside for the landowners to, to draw on the draw and you know, they could be used unit wide all of them. And so if you got a good piece of property you could hunt their ground on all the public ground that got bumped up to 20%. So initially you think oh that’s better. Well actually got bumped to 20% but then half of them are mandated private land only. Yes. Half of them 10 or or unit wide. So in essence you, you got cut by 33% from 15% to 10% of a units total, you got cut by a third. The number of unit wide landowner tags, you factor that in the fact that you can’t broker and now you’ve just had 10 to 12 years of landowners doing direct without fitters and whatnot. And tags are a lot harder to get your hands on now

00:40:14:01 –> 00:40:25:17
Lot. Well and the and the landowners are nervous about the language and brokering and they don’t wanna, you know, be in violation of the law and be banned from the program and whatnot. So they’re comfortable selling to who walks up people they’ve come

00:40:25:23 –> 00:40:28:10
Who walks years up to ’em at the coffee shop. Yeah. Or

00:40:28:10 –> 00:41:02:16
Whoever or who they’ve worked with for years and years. And so it’s just made it a challenge to get those, you know, the nice thing is when you do get ’em, and one of my sons did use one this year just ’cause he didn’t have enough points to draw, but when you do get ’em, you know you can, you don’t use your points, you can still gain a point applying the draw and whatnot and then go ahead and take advantage of a landowner tag and and go hunt the unit. You know, and we, we don’t even really wanna hunt the private. We don’t, we just wanna hunt the public and just go hunt together, you know, and that’s what we did this past year. So yeah,

00:41:02:16 –> 00:41:24:18
We’re normally use ’em to hunt units we’ve been to before and we just want to go hunt as if we drew the tag again. You know, that’s, that’s usually how we view it. Now if a specific landowner’s got a little bit of acreage or something and it allows you to give you something to go check out and see if there’s a group of dough hanging out and the buck moves in, that’s great. But we don’t normally base any of our hunts around the private online on

00:41:24:18 –> 00:42:21:26
Banks. No, that’s right. And that, and so when we’re talking about some of these places we’ve hunted like unit 21 for example, multiple times, you know, and I did kill a, you know, a 2 0 7 34 inch in there and my dad killed a buck that went two 12, you know, a few years back. But it’s one of those deals where, you know, you do wanna hunt those units the same units year after year ’cause you, you’ve learned it and now you can hit the ground running. Kinda like what we said when you can only scout the rutt in the rutt, you know, as you’ve been there, you were in the rutt and we wanna go back the next year. ’cause you, you can kind of hit the ground running and, and you feel comfortable and when you feel comfortable you do well and or at least better. And so anyway, we do supplement our draw tags with landowner tags when we can. But like having said that a guy goes into and hunts a, you know, one of these four season tags. I mean they’re, the tag numbers are so low and when you take 10% of one of those and give them to a unit wide landowner, you know, program you’re talking about one tag

00:42:21:27 –> 00:42:22:29
One, one or two. Okay. Maybe.

00:42:22:29 –> 00:42:27:18
Yeah. And when you do that, what’s the chances you’re gonna get it and what are the chances you can afford it? Can

00:42:27:18 –> 00:42:47:23
Afford it. Yeah. When you’re talking about a unit that takes 18 points to draw for a non-resident on the fourth, it’s not gonna be a cheap landowner tag. When the landowner draws one after waiting six to eight, 10 years themselves and the landowner draw to draw ’cause there’s only one. Yeah. And he doesn’t want 1500 bucks for that tag. He’s gonna want 6, 8, 10 grand.

00:42:48:03 –> 00:43:00:00
So having said that a little bit more on that landowner tag program is landowners have applications like you and I do and they apply in the draw and that application has points associated with it. And the most points win it’s preference point

00:43:00:00 –> 00:43:28:02
System. Very same thing. Yep. They apply for them amongst the pool of just landowners. They can opt out of the private land tags and just apply for the unit wide permits, which, unless they have enough ground to hunt, that’s what we’d probably recommend to landowners to get is the unit wide ones. ’cause they’re safer to sell to Joe Blow to go hunt the unit. But yeah, they compete amongst themselves. They don’t find out until the end of May, 1st of June when the, when the draw takes place just like us.

00:43:28:02 –> 00:44:34:02
Yeah, that’s right. And so anyway, lots of cool opportunities. I did wanna touch a little more on the archery and muzzle seasons. You know, these are seasons you can drop, you know, you can draw some of the better hunts like we talked about. Although, you know, like 44, we, it was a prime example of not being that, you know, that good on the early season hunts. I mean the deer there, the bucks are there and somebody’s gonna prove me wrong and kill a giant and I hope they do and call me and, and give us a story and maybe even a cover shop. But, but having said that, you know, like 21 archery, I mean you can, you can get 21 archery with, you know, seven, eight points plus right in there, seven or eight points. And, and those deer, you know, 20 one’s a little different up high. They’ve, there’s a lot of private up high and, and of course right there on the, on the boundary is unit 30 and it kind of that high country splits, you know, 21 and 30 and you can hunt both units when you draw that archery hunt. And that is, it’s a good opportunity, tough opportunity. It’s tough. It’s not easy. You got a lot of thick oaks, a lot of thick oak country to hunt as well as, you know, private land to work in and around or at least try to get private access on.

00:44:34:09 –> 00:45:16:13
That’s right. Well, and and another thing to point out is these two hunts are early. So if you have, if you’re hunting familiar country that you’ve been to before, going there without needing, you know, needing to scout or hitting the ground running is usually a pretty important way to do it. But you can also find deer in the summer range and go right back in the archery hunt and they’re gonna be there. Yeah. So your prec scouting really can help you on these hunts where the November hunts, they’re really not. The one thing to keep in mind though is the muzzle loader hunt starts September 9th this year and goes to the 17th. It’s essentially a nine day hunt right in the middle of the archery hunt. Yeah. And, and so you’re not gonna be alone. You’ve got

00:45:17:07 –> 00:45:18:02
Archers wanna be there early.

00:45:18:06 –> 00:45:40:14
Yeah. Archery hunters get to go there for a bit, then the muzz loaders are there, but then you’ve also got in maybe 75% of the state over the counter archery elk hunters. Yep. Everywhere. Yep. So just bear that in mind on these hunts. Maybe another reason why people don’t look at ’em as much is they’re not exclusive. You’re by yourself. Like Utah, you draw Henry Mountains or a ponsa, you’re by yourself hunting

00:45:40:14 –> 00:45:51:04
Here. Well, in the state’s kind of careful to try to be careful with the hunters that have been saving points for years and years and try not to have those seasons overlapping as best they can. Yeah. Colorado, there’s overlap everywhere, but

00:45:51:14 –> 00:46:05:24
Colorado’s very much so a combined hunt. Deer and elk at the same time state, whether it be archery or second or third rifle, they love deer, elk, hunters at the same time, their state loves it. The, the residents love it. So you just gotta be prepared for that. Yeah.

00:46:05:24 –> 00:46:53:29
You’re gonna see some people, you know, and, but I think having said all that, I think you and I, I mean, and we and I and you and I talk about it every day. Yeah. I mean, we’re at two or three in the morning working or four in the morning, you know, pounding out a magazine or whatever when the phones are dead. And of course we do this ’cause we love it and we’re just working it over for our own, you know, I mean, what are we gonna do ourselves? And we think about it every year. The archery muzzle hunts are definitely something that we should be doing. But you know, we’ve got other things going and, and I know some of your sheep stuff here in Utah starts in September and it gets really aggressive. I’m, I’m in Nevada, Utah and, and you know, there’s so many places you wanna be, but having said that, people that have time, I think the archery muzz definitely overlooked.

00:46:54:03 –> 00:47:50:06
Yes they are. Well and there are a couple of units as well that have early high country wilderness or above timberline rifle hunts that start September 2nd. Yeah. Pretty unique opportunity. Not very many states. Maybe Wyoming in the high country region, g r h on the 15th. But here’s a, here, here you’re walking in September 2nd after the bow hunt’s been going on for a week and you’ve got your long range rifle in these high country basins. Yep. And if you’ve got time to scout and find a buck, they’re a pretty dang good time to hunt. And you’ve gotta be physical. Yeah. They, they occur at 11 to 14,000 feet. These aren’t, these hunts aren’t for everybody. You’re gonna have to backpack, you’re gonna have to get aggressive. But we talk about it every year about how not those hunts specifically, ’cause they take 12, 13 points to draw. Yeah. But archery and muzzle, way undervalued for the points it takes to draw. If you have the time to go de you can

00:47:50:12 –> 00:48:01:02
Dedicate to ’em. Yeah, I, I agree with you a hundred percent. And so, you know, good options, like 61 we talked about, of course that high country shares it with 62, but you know, those bucks are there, those bucks are

00:48:01:02 –> 00:48:02:04
There. They’re, they’re living there year round.

00:48:02:08 –> 00:48:27:28
And you can hunt ’em and, and some of the, some of the, you know, craziest stories and, and sightings of giants that we hear about are, are in some of that country. And yet to get ’em on the ground is another thing. It’s pretty tough. You’re not, it’s not a state you can bait and it’s a spot in stock. I, and you could do, you know, I don’t know, maybe there’s another good effective method. I’m usually a spot in stock guy and, and it’s tough when you can’t see ’em. It’s thick country up there.

00:48:28:04 –> 00:48:39:08
A lot of oak rush in some of these units too where you start hunting them in August, they’re fully leaved out that oak gobbles up elk, let alone deer. Yeah. And 61 40, some of those units like that,

00:48:39:20 –> 00:49:07:01
I even think like 55 early. It’d still be good even though Gunnison, you know, has had this winter loss a lot. Some of those deer don’t just winter in gun in Gunnison, they win several different areas and you got to share that summer range. So, you know, I think there’s some good opportunities there. Anyway, lots of lots of opportunities. One another thing I want to talk about a little bit is just how the turn the turn back program, you know, when guys turn their tags back, what happens to those?

00:49:07:29 –> 00:49:31:29
Yeah. Last year it was kind of a new system. They just started throwing ’em back on the internet first come first serve this year I believe if it took what, five points or more? Yeah, they’re gonna go to the next alternate on the list and try to offer it to them. And I’m sure that’s probably gonna be how they, they get rid of the bulk of their tags, but if they can’t get rid of those, they are gonna use that online system first come first serve.

00:49:32:01 –> 00:49:52:16
Yeah. Within a certain timeframe. Yeah. And, and like every Tuesday they go on sell first, come first serve. Interesting. I mean first come, first serve for where, you know, online phone, standing in line physicals. So not an easy, but I do have a good friend that use that got his tag like that last year and didn’t use his points. Gotta go ahead and gain a point like you did.

00:49:52:16 –> 00:50:05:17
Definitely a benefit if you do live in Colorado or have somebody license agent can walk into a mom and pop license agent at 7 59 and be there when the computer turns on and pick up a leftover tag for for nothing. Yeah,

00:50:05:21 –> 00:50:06:00

00:50:06:00 –> 00:50:07:07
Exactly. Pretty much so. But

00:50:07:26 –> 00:50:31:18
This, some of these other units that I know, you know, take virtually zero points, you know, depending on the season. We’ve looked at the cluster of 15 cluster of 18, you know, of course we’ve talked about 35, 36 seconds be tough, lots and lots of tags. But you know, a place that might take your kids, especially with the cheap youth feed hundred bucks, you know, kids getting a tag for a hundred bucks, how can you go wrong? Right? That’s pretty,

00:50:31:19 –> 00:50:33:10
Pretty cheap. You know, there’s even

00:50:33:10 –> 00:50:34:05
Non-resident youth.

00:50:34:11 –> 00:51:27:11
This just something to keep driving home is if you have a light schedule that you think you’re gonna have this year and you have any kind of points or even no points in Colorado, there’s something you can go hunt, pick a point, pick a unit that took zero points, you know, and apply for it and you’re gonna have a chance to, to go hunt deer. And in some years of the right weather you can still 180 plus bucks on units that don’t take any points to drop. Yeah. We’ve done it ourselves. We don’t do it every time, but we do it enough. We go to Colorado enough that the stars align for you every now and then, you know, more often than not it feels like because we’re learning familiar country and you know, it just broadens your opportunities when you do get to three or four or five or six points, you can go back to something on maybe a little bit more desirable unit or, or season dates or things like that. So

00:51:27:18 –> 00:52:14:26
A few other hunts, you know, that it kind of intrigued me. I’ve never been able to hunt ’em. But like unit two, you know, it’s a giant unit. You look at the map, it’s just unbelievable real low tag numbers but you know, it borders good country and Wyoming at least good genetics. Yeah. Wyoming doesn’t manage for big deer, but, but if they did they would have giants right across the state line. And it’s just one of those, you know, it intrigues me guys. Of course I’m a desert freak and, and that’s a lot of wide open, crazy, you know, desert type terrain and you know, might be something a guy could pull a giant out of. I know 30 in the past unit 30 has been talked about and we’ve known, you know, multiple 180 plus deer come outta there. It hasn’t been talked about a lot. I haven’t heard a lot about it, but you know, like I say, in any of these units you might pull out a giant. So anyway,

00:52:15:10 –> 00:53:14:17
You know, that was a lot of smash and grab fast and furious talk, but there’s only so much you can do in an hour. Just, just can’t overemphasize enough to build points in Colorado to give yourself options. And I, I guess for me personally, I view Colorado, I use my points over there every five to eight years now and, and I’m not opposed to using them in less than that, but I usually have other, other seasons in other states or my personal guiding schedule or something like that, that I don’t wanna burn my points every other year or something like that. And you know, fortunately can pick up a landowner tag, you know, in the years I want to go and don’t wanna use my points, but just, just make Colorado part of your application strategy when it comes to deer. I will say also that I think everybody’s expectations need to be slightly lower than where we’re all used to thinking of Colorado as there’s a lot of good in Colorado and not as much no brainer. Great, phenomenal deer hunting as there was 6, 8, 10 years ago.

00:53:14:29 –> 00:53:17:11
I agree with you a hundred percent. I agree with you. Just

00:53:17:17 –> 00:53:22:25
Be prepared to see other hunters, orange hunters, people in orange, orange hunters. Not orange hunter but pink now

00:53:22:25 –> 00:53:28:26
For sure. Yeah, I guess you can, you gonna wear pink now? Hey, that’s a, a significant change by the way. You can wear hot pink’s instead of hunter orange. Yeah.

00:53:28:26 –> 00:53:32:06
I’m waiting to see what clothing lines come out the, with the snazzy pink

00:53:32:14 –> 00:53:39:20
Clothing shirt. Hey, if we were smart, we’d come out with some epic pink shirts, you know, and, and jackets and hats and whatnot. So anyway, but one I of

00:53:39:20 –> 00:53:52:02
Orange on the mountains, what I meant to say, you’ll see a lot of orange, but you gotta be prepared for that. You’re, that’s just Colorado, but the genetics are there just better to be there than sitting home hoping to have a big deer happen somehow else. So

00:53:52:06 –> 00:54:33:19
I did wanna cover the eastern plains real quick. I’ve hunted the plains a bit, you know, they’ve got a lot of private land over there and it, it is dominated by private land and so we don’t cover a lot of it in the magazine. You know, the plains is one of those that, you know, those big deer are, are largely dic dictated by the management strategy and practices of the ranchers and, and their neighbors because these deer are moving around and they might, and they’ve got late archery seasons and they’re out, they’ve got late rifle seasons, they’ve got an early rifle season. And so, you know, it just depends. And, and if they cut their corn or if they don’t cut their corn and, and there’s a lot that has to do going, goes into play when dealing with those, you know, eastern plains hunts.

00:54:33:19 –> 00:55:19:11
And so we work with a couple of great outfitters on the eastern plains, you know, for the most part, either you find landowners that you, you know, you develop a great relationship with and you start learning their property and, and maybe you help them manage or whatnot. Or if you know somebody have relatives of the family or however you get to know ’em, you know, then, then yeah, by all means go apply on the planes. It’s easy to draw out there and a lot of it’s ’cause it’s private and you’re not dealing with public land hunters for the most part. And, and anyway the, the outfitters will dictate too, you know, how hard they hunt the property and, and if they’re managing for trophies and some of our good friends are outfitters out there and they do well, but it’s also one of those things, you don’t just apply for a 1 0 9, 1 0 2 or 98 and then try to figure it out later. It’s not that situation. Yeah. So,

00:55:19:15 –> 00:55:39:25
But you need to essentially book your hunt then apply. Yeah, because limited number of, they just don’t take a unlimited number of hunters. They may take two people on a ranch all year. Yeah. And make sure you book the hunt or know who you’re gonna hunt with, then apply and draw the text. It’s not a surprise. And you’re starting from square one, the end of may, end of May. Can

00:55:39:25 –> 00:56:25:18
You believe, can you hear that rain? Yeah. So like Adam and I are sitting here in the studio and it’s just pounding us with rain. It’s unbelievable. I I I just get excited every time I see these big old storm clowns here in southern Utah, Arizona, Nevada gonna be some of the most incredible watch out antler growth years. I mean, Nevada had an amazing year, you know, last year. And man, how can it get any better? The sit the conditions are amazing. Of course, we’ll talk about that. I’m gonna be visiting with Greg Crow and a few other guys. Of course we’re gonna visit with Victor Trujillo, awesome Sheep Outfitter and good friend of both Adam and I. And anyway, lot of good things coming up, but we’re excited. Of course it’s not, it’s hard to keep the excitement level down here in the office.

00:56:25:19 –> 00:57:21:04
We talk hunting every single day and we’re, and you know, we’re hearing about big deer and big sheep and we’re pulling truck cameras. I know Adam, this past weekend pulled some truck cameras and we’re looking at 178 to 184 inch ramps and desert sheep and we’re just dying right now. So anyway, super excited there again. Jason Carter, Adam Bronson here with Epic Outdoors, just wrapping up a podcast. Colorado Deer for the most part, we do cover all the species in the state in our publication. We publish an EMAG version electronic file online. It’s, it’s up and going as well as a paper publication. It’s a hundred dollars a year. You get ’em both. There’s no extra cost for the other. And we visit with hunters every day, be happy to visit with you, help you with your hunting strategy. We develop, you know, short term, midterm, long-term hunting strategies for, you know, literally hundreds of people.

00:57:21:07 –> 00:57:57:10
And happy to do it. We love visiting with you guys. We learn from you. Our, our, I would say our clientele is some of the most, you know, serious avid hunters there is. And just proud to be a part of it. Just love our organization. We got a super good team in here with everybody. And anyway, appreciate Under Armour again. They sponsor this podcast, they’ve helped us afford to bring it to you. And they’re one of the leading innovators in our industry. Love what they do for the hunting and the hunting community and the sport they give all of us. And anyway, so from now Adam and Jason going back to work,

00:57:57:17 –> 00:57:59:07
Good luck in the draws. Let us know what you get.