Colorado over the counter for 2022

Phaseolus

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EOM Western Colorado
I believe that a lot of that counter is wilderness. Enter it from the north just east of summerset about8 miles.go south couple miles then take the old Davenport ranch road in 9 or so miles. You will pass the ranch house gate on your right take the left switch back in another mile ou so wnd you’ll come to the end of the drivable access.
From there you can base camp. Walk in or take in horses. I spent 6 years in there and was known as the back camp by all. Hung camp back under porcupine cone on the creek.
Forest Road 709, not called, “The Old Davenport Ranch Road” by anyone local, more like Coal Creek Road. The ranch gate is on the left (east), not the right.
 

Thegreatwapiti

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Checked out my trail cams today. Game on!!!
 

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TruckStevens

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Sep 26, 2021
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The area you're looking at is the White River Herd - biggest in the US. There are elk all over up there, but they can be tricky to find. Do all the normal stuff - scout, get away from roads, and don't get too committed to one spot. If you don't see game, move on.
 

TruckStevens

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I believe that a lot of that counter is wilderness. Enter it from the north just east of summerset about8 miles.go south couple miles then take the old Davenport ranch road in 9 or so miles. You will pass the ranch house gate on your right take the left switch back in another mile ou so wnd you’ll come to the end of the drivable access.
From there you can base camp. Walk in or take in horses. I spent 6 years in there and was known as the back camp by all. Hung camp back under porcupine cone on the creek.
Is this in 24 or 53?
 

TruckStevens

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I plan on picking up an over the counter tag for Colorado for next year for the 2nd or 3rd rifle season. From my understanding, an over the counter tag grants you the opportunity to hunt any of the OTC gmu's in Colorado. I'm currently looking at units that have a large amount of public land. Unit 24 and the surrounding units are the main ones I have been e-scouting. Does anyone have any experience with the Flat Tops Wilderness? I know with it being 2nd or 3rd rifle, it will be mid October to beginning of November so I would imagine the elk would be down lower than the highest points in the Flat Tops. I have also noticed that there are a few outfitters that hunt that area but one of them is based in the northern part of the wilderness area. I've seen from research that this unit has a pretty decent amount of pressure especially in the 1st and 2nd rifle seasons. This will be my first elk hunt and I will be driving from WV with a buddy that will also have a tag in hand, if all goes well. Just looking for some insight into the over the counter process and with the Flat Tops. Any info is greatly appreciated.
Expect weather. My buddy and I got hit with 18 inches of snow during 2nd rifle last year in 24 - it was no joke. That said - it moves the game around and makes them a bit easier to locate. I will be back in 24 for 1 st rifle this year. Good luck!
 
Joined
Dec 10, 2019
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Sounds like that’s near the same area I will be headed next year. Going with some family and friends that have been there a few times. We’re going to put in for 1st season, but planning on 2nd season, since we’re applying as a group.
 

kwa_bena

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Sep 20, 2021
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I hunted 24 during first rifle a few years ago. I hunted with an outfitter on horseback (I wanted to do a DIY hunt, but my dads health necessitated the horse access and outfitter assistance). To say that pressure was heavy in the non-wilderness area would be an understatement. ATVs were allowed outside of the wilderness area, but pressure was lighter on the wilderness side, especially back deep where we got to on horseback. Others who hunted different areas within the wilderness area had much different experiences, and although they went deep on horseback, they still had quite a few people on them that were willing to make the hikes and camp out there. Lots of trailheads to use, so access is not super tough. Hard to really hike away from the pressure. Beautiful country though.
I'vve been looking there myself. Safe to say somewhere in the middle would be a good area to start? I wonder how far from the trailhead most of the people are vs the people deeper into the wilderness.
 

kwa_bena

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Even a 'lay of the land' trip is highly worth it. Airfare being where it is (low) at the moment, a weekend scouting trip should cost the same as (maybe less than) the tag (although, this year, rental cars are staggeringly high in tourist areas but still reasonable in major airports).

I realize folks that live far away have varying schedules and work/life calendars that can preclude scouting, but there is no substitute for scouting. Whether you're doing it in summer, pre-season, or with a weapon in your hands, scouting matters.

This is another area where the "Elk aren't Whitetails" statement comes into play. There are - at a minimum - 4 steps to an elk in the freezer once you have a tag...Find them, Hunt them, Kill them, Get them out. And they have to be done in order. Sometimes there's a big gap between two of the steps and that's OK (except the gap between the last 2).
I thought about doing that going to Montrose but the tickets were in the $900 range coming from Atlanta. Vehicle rental would have sent it into the $1000 range by returning it by Monday morning.
 

JAG

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Mar 2, 2020
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I'vve been looking there myself. Safe to say somewhere in the middle would be a good area to start? I wonder how far from the trailhead most of the people are vs the people deeper into the wilderness.
I hunted this area in 2020; one mile into the wilderness from the motorized trail end will get you away from the majority of the crowds. 2 miles or more to get into elk and other outfitter camps.

They usually have plenty of leftover tags for 1st Rifle so this is like an OTC tag because there are many left-over, but still big crowds. If going to the flat tops, build a point for your first choice and have this as your second option and you should win it.

The terrain is gorgeous and it can snow heavily during 1st Rifle, but melt away quickly.
 
Joined
Dec 10, 2019
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How do you do that? Can you select to just build a point when you apply? And then also get a second choice? I’ve never applied before, but will be as soon as it opens up for Colorado.
 

kwa_bena

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Sep 20, 2021
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I hunted this area in 2020; one mile into the wilderness from the motorized trail end will get you away from the majority of the crowds. 2 miles or more to get into elk and other outfitter camps.

They usually have plenty of leftover tags for 1st Rifle so this is like an OTC tag because there are many left-over, but still big crowds. If going to the flat tops, build a point for your first choice and have this as your second option and you should win it.

The terrain is gorgeous and it can snow heavily during 1st Rifle, but melt away quickly.
Thanks, I'll do some scouting next year for archery season. It looks pretty neat from the aerials that I've seen
 
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