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Washington Help


New member
Jan 8, 2001
Sammamish WA
Hello all,

I have posted for help before in Washington and received some good advise concerning hunting the Olympics (thanks Raybow). I would love to check it out more there but my Father will be coming to archery hunt with me and I know the coastal range can be quite up and down...not including the heavy vegetation to get around in.

I don't think my Fathers knees can take that kind of terrain very well so I have been looking elsewhere in the state. I am now looking in three units around St. Helens...the Packwood (516), Lewis River (560) and the Marble (558). Two of the units are 3pt or antlerless and one is 3pt or better only. May Father says he doesn't want to take a cow most hunters, if the opportunity presented itself. I think he would let fly for his first elk with a bow.

Does anyone have any experience in these units and what I might expect to find there. I want to settle on a couple different areas to start scouting in a couple months. I am new to hunting here in WA so all advise is welcome!!!

Thanks in advance,
Fullabull,, Those are some good areas for elk..If your dad has bum knees, then you might want to look at these areas..

1) 503 Randell 3pt./ antlerless
2) 505 Mossyrock 3pt/Anterless
3) 510 Stormking 3pt.
4) 513 So. Rainer 3pt.
5) 529)Winston 3pt.
6) 653 Mashell 3pt/Anterless
7) 699 Long Island 3pt/Antlerless- Need a boat to get to it, and your own water for camp..

Give these a look..I have seen elk in all of them
If any of them look good to you, and you want to have a look let me know, and maybe we can set something up...

FaB, of the 3 units you are looking at, the Marble is the unit that will best suit you and your dad. There are some nice elk in that unit and it is pretty good hunting and not to rough for hiking.
The Packwood area is in some pretty rough area, there are elk in the area but the damn injuns have been pretty hard on them the last few years.
The Lewis is a waste of time in my opinion but I have not been down there the last couple of years so things could have changed. The last time we hunted there, we found very little in the way of elk.
You might want to look at the Pe ell-Raymond area, can't remember the units but alot of elk in that area and very easy hunting and hiking.
Great areas you have picked,just dont come north not as many Elk in the 400 series.Atleast the Nooksack unit is not open,the cats are playing hell with the newly transplanted elk in that area.I have heard of atleast 10 taken by cats since the plant.
The Nassel area down south is full of elk right now and there are some pretty flat areas to hunt that are close to the town. I would strongly suggest at least looking at this and some of the surroundoing areas as it has been producing some real nice bulls the last few years especially!! Those others that you mentioned are pretty good as well but it can be hard to pinpoint elk unless you spend a great deal of time there. I think you will find that there is a lot more flat area than a guy thinks, even in some of those areas that look steep. There are a lot of flatbenches that are pretty good size that a guy tends to overlook. Wherever you decide to scout, grab a topographical map of the area and look for those flat spots on it.
Thanks for the input fellow WA hunters

Another question about two of the units I was talking about, the packwood and the Lewis river. Do the elk seem to be spread around or are they more towards Mt. St Helens or in the direction of the indian reservation?

Raybow, where is the Nassel? Is this a unit or an area. I tried to mapquest it but no go...

When do you all start your scouting?

Thanks again,

Nassel is down in the far south west corner of washington. It is accross from Astoria Oregon.
The Columbia river separates the two. Nassell is on the North side of the river. Actually I read of someone posting the Long Island area that is relatively close to Nassell. It is less than a half an hour between the two. If you head toward Longview and cut west toward the coast you will come right into Nassell. Grab a Washingtonm road atlas and look up Nassell that way. I have heard good things about the long Island area but have never hunted it. I would suspect there to be a fair amount of ground cover though. That can prove to be quite exhausting and tough to hunt in. It would be well worth checking out ahead of time. There are still alot of areas to hunt on the penninsula that are flat also. Again it is just a matter of scouting. Some of my favorite areas to hunt were the flattest. Any of the river drainages are worth checking into as they produce massive feed stations for the game. You can't go wrong there. They are all relatively flat too. The Solduc can be one of the best. Not only does a guy get great flat spots to hunt, you can always drop a line for some silvers and kings. Best fishing in the country at times, bar none. dad and I landed a 24 pound silver 2 years ago. Would have been a state record I believe. Any way, don't give up so easily on the coastal area just because there is some rough terrain. Any way we'll talk at ya later.
Fullabull, you couldn't find "Nassel" because it is spelled Naselle. If I was serious about going after a westside elk, that is where I would go. Lots of elk and not as much hunting pressure as other areas get. I would recommend the Bear River unit.
Well, it looks like I will be doing a lot of driving, camping and scouting this summer. I should know the state pretty well by the end of the late season
My kids wanted to start camping more anyway...heeheehee.

I'm already learning where all the soccer fields are in the state :-D
Anyway, hope to talk to you all more about areas before the season starts. Once I get a chance to start going out I'll let you know if I run in to bigfoot.

Washington Hunter has some good advice. You may want to scout the Ryderwood unit also; It is south of Highway 6, south and east of Pe Ell. But as WA Hunter said, Bear River is a good area.
Just rememeber the fire danger thing, early bowhunting on the westside access is the hardest problem to get around, lots of elk in all the places/areas but its the access that will get ya.
I can deal with the no motor vehicles but the "no public entry" s***s.
I hunted the Packwood area pretty hard in the late 70's. I would suppose it has changed in that area a little since. I do remember that particular area had a lot of hills to go up and down, or maybe that's because that is where my dad sent me. I do know that him and my uncle would drive around until they found some thing to shoot on an upper bank, that way they could just role it into the truck. As fast as every thing grows in that region, I would imagine the clear cuts would be pretty much impassible with all the brush, or actually they trees may be choking out the under brush enough to get around pretty good by now.
The last time I went into the are where Mt. St. Helens devestated, it was seven years after the fact and the brush was so thick any where my buddy and I went, you couldn't see any farther than you could spit, and that would have been a long shot. But then again, since it has been so many years, the region should be starting to really come into it's own...
Good luck with that... :D
Keep us posted...
Gastro Gnome - Eat Better Wherever

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