Elk Hunt Via Train

Sbrown77

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May 7, 2016
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Hey guys, first time posting but I've been browsing for awhile, lots of great info here, thanks!

Without getting too far ahead of myself, I'm planning an OTC archery elk hunt in unit 74/75 north of Durango. All of my questions have been answered via browsing the forum, except one....

Has anyone used the durango>silverton train for hunting access? I know they make stops en-route for skiers/hikers/climbers, why not hunters? Seems like a fun way to access some remote terrain. I can't seem to find much information on this, or beta from past hunts.

I have loads of questions, but just wanted to see what might come out of the woodwork from any one else's past experiences that might dissuade me or kindle the fire. Could this be too much work to access elk that might not have the benefit of less hunting pressure? I anticipate having to hike up and away for elk habitat, not dropped off in it, it'll be a backcountry backpack hunt. Thank you.
 

HighDesertSage

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Sage Brush to Corn Fields
They will drop off and pick up archery hunters only. It's crowded around the drop off points. so you'll still need to hike in a bit. Your better off just going out on a trailhead and saving your money.
 

Gr8bawana

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Nevada
What about getting an elk out? Will they allow you to put a quartered or boned out elk on the train? I'm assuming that if you're backpacking in you wont have a large cooler to put the meat into.
If you go from a trailhead like ishootdasmallones recommends you can have a big cooler with ice waiting to cool the meat off and also reward yourself with an ice cold beer.
Just something to think about.
 

T Bone

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West Slope, CO
I've hunted mtn goat off the train. It's a truly unique experience.

There is some primo elk hunting to be had during archery season in that country. I've seen large numbers that feed above timberline and filter back into cover in the mornings.

Hunting solo, I'm not physically able to get a bull out of that country in Sept without spoilage. The facts are that it takes 7-12 hours to get to the top depending on if you off load at Needleton or Elk Park. 4 trips for a big bull. It won't work unless you have cool weather.

If you have two people that are in good shape, it'd be borderline doable if you stash a large cooler packed with ice at the rail stop.

Send me a PM if you have questions.
 

Sbrown77

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May 7, 2016
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Thanks T Bone! Plan was to load train with cooler full of ice and leave it where we get dropped off.
 

Kiwi

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Sbownn77, good luck with your trip. Sounds like a fun adventure! Would be awesome to see a report if you do go.
 

Nunyacreek

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Dec 13, 2013
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I think it sounds super cool. Who cares if turns out that you let down and opt not to shoot because it is physically impossible to get a bull out. Maybe silly but I think the experience Alone would make it a success. I also eat a lot of tag soup, but I've had some great plans and enjoyed the uniqueness of them. Once in a while it works !
 

Texasgamehunter

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Apr 29, 2016
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I have been kicking around the idea of hunting those areas and 741 also. Sounds like a pretty different experience riding a train to the drop off point, but whatever works right? I personally am thinking about finding somewhere legal to pitch a wall tent and live the life for a week or two near a trail head for base camp and deploy out every morning for the hunts. Good luck OP.
 

Sbrown77

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May 7, 2016
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I think it sounds super cool. Who cares if turns out that you let down and opt not to shoot because it is physically impossible to get a bull out. Maybe silly but I think the experience Alone would make it a success. I also eat a lot of tag soup, but I've had some great plans and enjoyed the uniqueness of them. Once in a while it works !

My thoughts exactly nunyacreek, this area is gorgeous!

Thanks kiwi, that was my plan, hopefully things start to fall into place.

Texasgamehunter, that sounds fun, a wall tent is plush.

I've found good beta on hiking forums for what to expect for the hiking and terrain. Any other suggestions are welcome.
 

T Bone

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West Slope, CO
if you need motivation, this might do it.



There are some nice bulls in there that I would love to tag. The logistics of getting it out is the challenge.
 
Last edited:

vanish

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Nov 25, 2015
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Colorado
Just bring along a couple of Aron Snyder clones and you'll be fine. :D

Just packing in to some of that country is rough, let alone packing an elk out.

10427298_733911394064_7897003188157467455_n.jpg
 

DRAFTSTUD

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SHREVEPORT, LOUISIANA
When I was researching this they had a Car they would back into place for your stay. Don't know if they do that anymore, I think they placed it around Carson Canyon in 75. You might "Might" talk to outfitters about a Elk Packout option. John
 

Sbrown77

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May 7, 2016
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Gah, that's gorgeous vanish.

Thanks for that info DRAFTSTUD, I didn't even think about asking an outfitter for a packout, might be worth a try.
 

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