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Anyone hunting the MT shoulder season

Poke 'Em

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For all the bemoaning of the management strategy, I haven't seen anyone actually hunting the shoulder season. Has anyone been out there? Is it a madhouse?

I've got an unfilled tag in my pocket, and was considering the drive west.
 

Pagosa

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I haven't been hunting in the shoulder season, nor do I planned too. But I have a co-worker in Great Falls that has been a half dozens times. And he explained there is lots of road hunters, hauling utv/atvs around and not one hunting on foot due too the conditions. He was hunting the Galt ranch on Lingshire road. He explained he couldn't hunt on foot due to the heavy snowpack, and he is a serious hunter. I personally can't see a lot of elk being killed, due too people being weak. But it should support the local cafes, bars, and motels during the offer season.
 

mtmiller

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And he explained there is lots of road hunters, hauling utv/atvs around and not one hunting on foot due too the conditions. He was hunting the Galt ranch on Lingshire road. He explained he couldn't hunt on foot due to the heavy snowpack, and he is a serious hunter. I personally can't see a lot of elk being killed, due too people being weak.

Hopefully being hunted for the next 2.5 months with the current snow pack won't kill a lot of elk or impact calf recruitment...or maybe that is OK?;)
 

Poke 'Em

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I haven't been hunting in the shoulder season, nor do I planned too. But I have a co-worker in Great Falls that has been a half dozens times. And he explained there is lots of road hunters, hauling utv/atvs around and not one hunting on foot due too the conditions. He was hunting the Galt ranch on Lingshire road. He explained he couldn't hunt on foot due to the heavy snowpack, and he is a serious hunter. I personally can't see a lot of elk being killed, due too people being weak. But it should support the local cafes, bars, and motels during the offer season.

Have snowshoes, will travel.
 

kansasdad

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Have snowshoes, will travel.

Which is what I think mtmiller is pointing out. These wintering elk have to deal with winter conditions, and then possibly wolves of the four footed variety, and definitely of the two footed or two snowshoes variety.
 

antlerradar

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Lots of road hunter with atvs and not willing to walk in tough conditions. Probably few elk getting killed. It won't take long for landowners to get tired of that in a hurry. I sure would.
 

Muley_Stalker

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I don't know about Montana, but this is winter range near me. Sitting ducks.


wild-elk-and-mountains.jpg
 

belly-deep

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Lots of road hunter with atvs and not willing to walk in tough conditions. Probably few elk getting killed. It won't take long for landowners to get tired of that in a hurry. I sure would.

My bet is the landowners reconsider their supposed intolerance for elk after dealing with 6 months of hunters every year.
 

Muley_Stalker

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They'll do that pretty much any time of year if nobody is shooting at them.

Of course, but during the regular seasons they are being shot at. Actually, you don't have to be shooting at them. Just be in the area, and they'll get off open meadows.

The problem is in winter they stay on the winter range, and the hunters (?) know right where they are.
 

belly-deep

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Of course, but during the regular seasons they are being shot at. Actually, you don't have to be shooting at them. Just be in the area, and they'll get off open meadows.

The problem is in winter they stay on the winter range, and the hunters (?) know right where they are.

I think in this situation, the elk are moving to neighboring ranches that won't let hunters on.
 

belly-deep

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Then the ranchers shoot them. :D

Certainly, but not the same as being harassed by the unending hordes for 3 months in the winter. My guess is the rancher goes out and knocks one over with his .243, then they're right back on the haystack the next day.
 

Muley_Stalker

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I've watched elk on the winter range a lot. I'm not sure how they would act if shot at. I have a feeling they'd be back the next day unless hunters were hanging around.

Our winter range has lots of timber near by, but there's no food for them in the timber. They need those open meadows to survive in the winter.

I just can't agree with killing elk that time of year. Give them a chance to be able to move around more like earlier in the years hunting seasons.

I'm a firm believer in fair chase.
 

belly-deep

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I'm a firm believer in fair chase.

Me too but the FWP has decided they need to go. I'd rather have hunters take them then FWP snipers take care of them or ranchers start gut shooting them and leaving them lay.
 

Muley_Stalker

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Me too but the FWP has decided they need to go. I'd rather have hunters take them then FWP snipers take care of them or ranchers start gut shooting them and leaving them lay.

What's the difference? If the FWP takes them the meat goes to the needy.
 

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