Elk pref point strategy, CO & WY

Jwill

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Nov 7, 2011
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I’ll click over the big-40 next year and am thinking about burning a few points on an elk hunt. Currently sitting on 11 points in WY and 14 in CO. Also, have 9 in AZ, and 7 in UT & NV, but figure I will keep building in those states. Anyhow, I've hunted elk a few times and taken cows in CO (1st rifle) and WY (leftover) and a raghorn bull in a MT (general). Certainly no expert, but have a few "opportunity" hunts under my belt. I've thought about unit 40 in CO which puts me in the hunt for 3rd rifle or archery. I was considering 64-2 in WY, but it looks like that one is creeping away and off the table... I figure I'll re-up my GoHunt in a couple months to start planning in earnest, but am interested in hearing about the experience others have had hunting tags with similar point requirements. Thanks for any help!
 

wllm1313

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If it was me I would probably burn those CO points, you wont catch the group in the 20s. Since it's a bit of an OIL I would focus more on the hunt mechanics and less on trophy quality, i.e. what weapon you want to use + experience. I would want a unit where during the season I'm hunting the elk are mostly on public land. I'd look at any unit that takes between 7-14 points, whatever if it's overkill.

I've never hunted 40, I have hunted deer in 52... and I know guys who have burnt 14 points on the 4th season tag and gotten skunked. During 4th season in that unit, a lot of the deer are on private... there are some monsters but none you can hunt.

Just some things to consider beyond points and inches.
 

Mtnhuntr

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For Wyoming, depending on your expectations/goals, you may want to look at some of the Bighorn units. Decent quality, more public land, some really beautiful areas, decent chance of drawing, etc....

Again, depending on what experience you want, like @wllm1313 said, you can also get 2-3 general tags with that many points if there are others you want hunting with you.
 

rmyoung1

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If I had that many points in CO, I’d think about 1st rifle in 49 and 2nd rifle in 76. Both would be neat hunts
 

Trigger50

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Jul 11, 2010
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Burn em. You ain't getting any younger. The cost of pts continues to climb consistently. There's plenty of great hunting to be had w zero or a couple pts.
 

PeteTheBeat

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Jul 8, 2018
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I just got back from a vacation in Colorado 49. I did a lot of scouting for hopefully an opportunity in the future. If I had your points I would not hesitate to burn them there.
 

3855WIN

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Jul 17, 2014
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Mississippi
Jwill,

I’m in a similar boat, but a bit older. I’d make an annual Western trip and sometimes a couple in one fall. Then kids HS sports and saving for their college got in the way. I’ve burned points the past two years in Wyoming on deer and antelope. I’ve also discovered that points are worth less every passing year. I say burn em now while you can still climb the mountains. I’d burn Colorado first as that’s the highest elk country. Then on to Wyoming.
 

wannakillabigbull

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Mar 17, 2017
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Colorado
Colorado unit 40 gets brought up a lot on here and other forums. I wouldn't burn your points there unless you can afford a guide or live nearby. Access is frustrating to put it mildly and the unit can take years to learn how to hunt the public. There's certainly big bulls, though. Apply with caution because if you try to DIY on public you could very well end up waiting 15 years to go on a wildlife watching tour of Colorado's private lands. That doesn't mean it can't be done but there are a lot of other units that are far less risky as far as getting a great experience with decent bull quality; looks like some other members have pointed a couple of those out already.
 
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