Antelope unit selection question.

Shangobango

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 5, 2019
Messages
1,120
Location
Louisiana
I am looking at 2 units in Wyoming. Both took mid to high single digit points to draw last season and large percentages of public. Units are similar in size. I will have 7 days on the ground. First antelope hunt. No first hand experience judging inches on antelope. Not overly concerned with trophy quality but would like to take a nice buck.

Unit A: more tags, more antelope, slightly lower historic trophy potential, population at objective.

Unit B: 1/5 the tags as unit A, slightly higher historic trophy potential, population well below objective and on a downward trend.

What are the things besides the obvious to consider when making this decision?

I am leaning heavily toward Unit A but like the idea of there being less pressure in Unit B.
 

Shangobango

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 5, 2019
Messages
1,120
Location
Louisiana
Have you looked closer at the public than just percentages? Example, area 50 has lots of public land, but a lot of it is not pronghorn habitat and a good bit is checkerboard.

Yes I have. I have OnX and BLM surface maps. The access in both is excellent.

Have you mapped out where you plan to hunt in each unit? I always research access.

Are you camping or staying in a hotel?

I generally would go for B if all things are equal. My favorite hunts are those I feel I can breathe.

I will be light weight mobile camping.
 

deer_shooter

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 20, 2009
Messages
1,830
Location
Southwest Pa.
Good points so far on researching access and verifying habitat. Personally, I'd opt for A knowing that more than half the tag holders won't get far off the road. Given that this is your first antelope hunt and sounds like you are burning over 5 points, I think you'll be shocked at the number of animals you'll see in either unit.
 

Jape

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 26, 2017
Messages
1,520
I lean towards option A. Lots of public land and good access, so all you need to do now is be patient, look over lots of pronghorn, and go after the one that looks good to you. As a general rule, if it’s prongs are higher than its ears then you should probably shoot.
 

WildWill

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 10, 2016
Messages
1,122
Location
SE Oklahoma
I'd pick A as well more goats and room to roam. Regardless of what unit you pick my one tip is get to your unit early and spend a few days just looking at bucks. They can be very difficult to judge if you don't spend a lot of time looking at them. A average buck and "good" buck look pretty similar and average bucks are a dime a dozen in a good WY unit.
 

shb

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 24, 2018
Messages
242
Your over thinking it. Pick the easiest tag to draw and go.


Chasing inches on antelope is a needless, and arbitrary complication.


The trophy in antelope hunting is in your frying pan, your sage filled nose, and the easy, social, relaxed adventure.
 

Shangobango

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 5, 2019
Messages
1,120
Location
Louisiana
Your over thinking it. Pick the easiest tag to draw and go.


Chasing inches on antelope is a needless, and arbitrary complication.


The trophy in antelope hunting is in your frying pan, your sage filled nose, and the easy, social, relaxed adventure.

I get what you are saying but doing my homework is half the fun.

I can’t wait to try the meat.

Also I will be going solo.
 

WyoDoug

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 8, 2019
Messages
2,923
Location
Cheyenne, Wyoming
I would look at it this way:

1) Is the area accessible? How much public land. Pressure will likely force antelope from the public onto the private if the ratio of public to private is low.
2) How is the terrain for antelope? Antelope like flat plains to rolling hills mainly but need lots of water even in the winter.

If you took the hints of a lot of people online, you want to keep in mind so are 10s of thousands of other people. Virtually every area in Wyoming holds significant numbers of antelope. The area I hunt, the biologist said they were talking about removing about 1000 head of antelope next year due to crop damage.

I heard more than once a hunter say they were not seeing antelope. When I watched how they hunt, most were staying close to the roads unless they saw something then they might get out and walk a little. I have been finding them in the little valleys anywhere from quarter mile to a mile from the road.
 

SaskHunter

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 7, 2018
Messages
1,690
Location
Saskatchewan
I think both will be good hunts. Any 3 to 6 point unit in Wyoming will be a good hunt, anything above that will be a great hunt with awesome opportunities. Even if the herd is below objective, we're talking about antelopes here, chances are there will be hundreds of them running around.

A: more hunters and more goats; they'll be pushed around by hunters and you should see plenty of animals and be able to "choose" one you're happy with. The average hunter won't go farther than a mile away from trails.

B: less hunters and less goats; less pressure on goats means you should have good opportunities. You may have to be a little more mobile but you may not have to go farther away from the trails as in unit A.

Personally, without knowing more details on the areas it's hard to see where I would go but for a 7 day hunt I'd be looking at pairing it up with a deer tag so that would play a bigger role on where I would apply, more than the goat areas themselves.
 

Shangobango

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 5, 2019
Messages
1,120
Location
Louisiana
I think both will be good hunts. Any 3 to 6 point unit in Wyoming will be a good hunt, anything above that will be a great hunt with awesome opportunities. Even if the herd is below objective, we're talking about antelopes here, chances are there will be hundreds of them running around.

A: more hunters and more goats; they'll be pushed around by hunters and you should see plenty of animals and be able to "choose" one you're happy with. The average hunter won't go farther than a mile away from trails.

B: less hunters and less goats; less pressure on goats means you should have good opportunities. You may have to be a little more mobile but you may not have to go farther away from the trails as in unit A.

Personally, without knowing more details on the areas it's hard to see where I would go but for a 7 day hunt I'd be looking at pairing it up with a deer tag so that would play a bigger role on where I would apply, more than the goat areas themselves.

I am definitely willing to be mobile. I am planning to try out backpack camping while I am there so I will have the gear to be very mobile.

I’m mot interested in getting a deer tag unless it is reduced price antlerless. My deer points are being saved for something in particular.
 

SaskHunter

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 7, 2018
Messages
1,690
Location
Saskatchewan
I am definitely willing to be mobile. I am planning to try out backpack camping while I am there so I will have the gear to be very mobile.

Personally, I would truck camp or get a hotel/motel room for antelope. I move A LOT for an antelope hunt and do so by truck. Drive from vantage points to vantage points and glass, the trick is to walk 1 to 2 klicks away from the trail and glass farther. A normal antelope hunting day for me; I will drive to, at the very least, 4-5 different spots and glass. The idea is to glass what truck hunters can't see. These guys will still be successful but you will have better chances and a cooler hunt, in my opinion.
 

NoWiser

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 12, 2013
Messages
1,808
Location
Minnesota
Go to whichever has the terrain/scenery you'd rather hunt in. It's easy to overthink planning an antelope hunt. If an area takes more than 5 points to draw, you'll be able to fill your tag at any given time during the hunt, whether that's the first hour or last 20 minutes of the season. Perhaps one has a trout stream nearby you'd like to fish, or opportunities to hunt upland birds?
 
Top