How many days should I block off?

tboyer44

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Oct 19, 2020
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Hey everyone,
I first wanted to say that this community is the best and most helpful tool for planning a hunting trip aside from OnX maps. I wanted to thank all of you that have reached out to help me so far and wanted to express my appreciation for this community.

That being said,
I am planning to do a pronghorn and deer trip this fall to WY and wanted to get an opinion on how many days I should realistically plan to take off in order to give myself the best chance at success on at least pronghorn. I am going to be driving, along with 2-3 other buddies of mine from PA. I am quite flexible and plan to take around 8 work days off, which would also give me 2 full weekends. So all in all 12 days minus around 3 for traveling since its a long way to WY from PA. I am going to plan for a full day of scouting so that would give me around 7-8 days to hunt.

This will be in rifle season from opening day on, and we are gonna be limited to one of the eastern low point units.

We hunt hard and are willing to walk A LOT, as we do back here in the PA mountains for whitetail, black bear, and turkey. Is it realistic to think we will all be able to harvest buck goats in that time frame? We arent picky on size, just want a good representative of the species and want to enjoy some pronghorn steaks and see some new country.

Private Message me if your not comfortable sharing the info on the public thread.
 

stk

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Dec 23, 2020
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Some of it depends on the unit and the year, but it’s not unrealistic to think that 3 of you could all tag out in two days. I recommend you have a plan to occupy another couple of days if you tag out early. Go hunt coyotes, shoot prairie dogs, fish, sight see, etc. It’s a long drive and pronghorn hunting can go quickly if you aren’t very picky.
 

hogcarpy

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7-8 days to harvest an antelope should be plenty, especially if you all won't be picky. Harvesting deer in addition to goats might be a different story depending on where you hunt and how picky you may be.
 

tboyer44

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Oct 19, 2020
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7-8 days to harvest an antelope should be plenty, especially if you all won't be picky. Harvesting deer in addition to goats might be a different story depending on where you hunt and how picky you may be.
Thank you for your input! I was going to buy a deer tag just in case we saw a nice one while antelope hunting or in case I filled my lope tag early. Probably wont be too picky on a mule deer since I have never been out west, but certainly don't want to kill any tiny mule deer buck.
 

Shangobango

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I’m in the same boat except I will be going solo. 20+ hours of driving each way so I am planning for 4 days on the road.

I think I an going to plan on the whole trip including drive time being 11 days.

If I tag out early I will probably bird hunt and familiarize myself some with the deer and elk unit I hope to hunt soon.
 

stealthy_bowman

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Not sure how far west in Wyoming you are planning to go, but you may need more than 3 days of driving. Been doing the drive to Montana for the last several years, coming from western NJ, and it takes about 2.5 days each way. Yes, that is with stopping at night to sleep, which in my view is essential for safety reasons and also to ensure that you wont be mentally destroyed from the get go of the hunt.
 

tboyer44

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Not sure how far west in Wyoming you are planning to go, but you may need more than 3 days of driving. Been doing the drive to Montana for the last several years, coming from western NJ, and it takes about 2.5 days each way. Yes, that is with stopping at night to sleep, which in my view is essential for safety reasons and also to ensure that you wont be mentally destroyed from the get go of the hunt.
totally agree,
If i was going myself I would definitely block off 2.5 days each way.
I gave 1.5 days each way just because i will have 3 other friends to take part in the driving. IF we keep switching on and off every three hours I figure it will make it much easier.
 

ElkFever2

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If I was in your shoes I’d block off 2 days before opener to scout and then 1st 2 days of the season (opening first light, mostly) to fill goat tags. Then spend the rest of the time on deer, as much as you can. Last year I hunted a busy goat unit that had limited deer habitat and saw 0 mulie bucks on public in 5 days. I did see one doe/fawn pair, and I turned up deer scat once. I also saw probably 200 goats on public. I met some other out of staters who bought a deer tag “just in case”...not sure they ever saw a public mulie buck either.
 

SaskHunter

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Saskatchewan
It all depends on how you guys plan on hunting. I personally am 100% more productive by myself and would give myself 5 days for an antelope and deer buck hunt. Hunting in a group can be a pain in the butt, more people or different comfort levels working together and making more mistakes, etc. Even as a group of 3-4, 9 days in PLENTY even if you use a single vehicle wisely!!!

Keep in mind that it's Wyoming, you may be hunting in shorts the opener and parka the next day. Roads can turn to mud in one rainfall/snowstorm and you can start losing hunting days in blizzards. You can also each have an antelope/deer buck tag filled by the second morning, you never know...
 

Four22

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Apr 2, 2016
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Ohio
We drive Ohio to Wyoming straight through. 3 guys switching off. We leave at noon - early afternoon and that puts us at the hotel in the afternoon the next day to get checked in an settled. It’s hard through the night but they self (38) and my cousin (28) go through the night so pops (67) can sleep 👍

after that, it’s a little driving and looking, then get after it 🙂
 

Western Traveler1

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Curious if you plan on camping or staying in a motel somewhere? I’ve done the marathon driving ventures by myself and with friends. What my longtime hunting partner and I do now is to time our arrival so we have time to set up camp in the daylight if camping. If we can do that and still have time to relax and get a bit of rest before scouting and our hunt, great. If not we stop somewhere before arriving so we can freshen up and get some sleep. It sucks setting up camp at night in the snow or wind etc sometimes. Especially if we just drove 1300 miles...
 

NEWHunter

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Brookfield, WI
To give yourself the best chance of success on antelope, I would plan 2 days of scouting, maybe three days, before the opener. Then use the rest of your vacation filling your tags.

You’ll probably want to split in to two groups of two. Ideally, you’ll fill 2/4 tags right away opening morning and then depending on the unit, hopefully you’ll fill your remaining two tags over the next couple of days.
 

tboyer44

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Oct 19, 2020
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Curious if you plan on camping or staying in a motel somewhere? I’ve done the marathon driving ventures by myself and with friends. What my longtime hunting partner and I do now is to time our arrival so we have time to set up camp in the daylight if camping. If we can do that and still have time to relax and get a bit of rest before scouting and our hunt, great. If not we stop somewhere before arriving so we can freshen up and get some sleep. It sucks setting up camp at night in the snow or wind etc sometimes. Especially if we just drove 1300 miles...
Thanks for the advice,
I will definitely try and plan arrival in the light.
 

tboyer44

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Oct 19, 2020
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29
To give yourself the best chance of success on antelope, I would plan 2 days of scouting, maybe three days, before the opener. Then use the rest of your vacation filling your tags.

You’ll probably want to split in to two groups of two. Ideally, you’ll fill 2/4 tags right away opening morning and then depending on the unit, hopefully you’ll fill your remaining two tags over the next couple of days.
Thanks for the recommendation! We will definitely be splitting up into two groups. The Area I am looking at is about half WIA so those sections are totally off limits until opening day if i read correctly unless your just driving by on a public road.
 

Mattff200

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Mar 1, 2019
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Definitely doable, look into doe/fawn tags. They are about $50 each with your application fee for a non resident. Extends your hunt and can get you some extra mean more meat for not much more money considering your driving from PA and your also paying for a full price tag. You can select to be taken out of the doe fawn tag if you don't draw your buck tag.
 

tboyer44

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Oct 19, 2020
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Definitely doable, look into doe/fawn tags. They are about $50 each with your application fee for a non resident. Extends your hunt and can get you some extra mean more meat for not much more money considering your driving from PA and your also paying for a full price tag. You can select to be taken out of the doe fawn tag if you don't draw your buck tag.
I am going to put in for them for sure. It seems like there are only a few in the units I am wanting to hunt so I guess we will see.
 

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