- Sep 26, 2017
Which is another reason why applying and fronting the money should be required to obtain a point.If you go back through the history, the economic downturns of 2000-2002 and 2009-2011 did have an impact on applicant number, albeit temporary, but no much impact on point buying. In a downturn, the data would indicate that the folks who might be making hard financial decisions just go more to point buying to keep their place in line. Colorado history would tell me that downturns might have a short window where draw odds get better for a year or two, but those folks who stopped applying still bought points. And when the economy recovers, they jump in with even more points than they had before, so the rate of point creep accelerates once the economy starts to recover.
A new dynamic that I don't have in my history of spreadsheets is the huge increase in new resident population of favored western hunting states. I don't have any charts that show big changes in the allocation between resident/non-resident tag percentages. It happened in Oregon in 2007, but with the large price increase for the non-resident license combined with a tag reduction, it is hard to tell which caused the big drop in NR applicants. Likely both. And most of those NRs who bailed on Oregon at that time likely used that money to start applying in other states. None of this happens in a vacuum.
I think we are going to see more changes where residents start demanding more. That is why my last video focused on the changes coming in WY and CO. Those are the two most generous western states. Their past generosity also makes them the most likely to change the resident/non-resident allocation. If that happens, even if the number applicants were to decline by 10%, it would still result in huge point creep due to a much lower churn rate when less tags are allocated to NRs. And if Vegas would let me bet money on the future, I have $10,000 that says in ten years both CO and WY have reduced NR allocation, to some degree, for elk/deer/pronghorn.
CO, more than WY, is growing like crazy. Population growth is impacting herds. More residents and herds being hammered by development aren't a good sign for NRs who are making long-term plans in CO. When that happens, and I think it will, the NRs currently in "No Mans Land" of Colorado elk will regret not burning their points a long time ago. They'll never catch those units they are chasing if the NR percentage ever gets cut in CO.
To your point, history shows that economic downturns have temporary changes, only to be usurped when the economy recovers.
Although, it always amazes me what some people are willing to spend on hunting. I know individuals taking out $30,000 loans to go hunt in Alaska. Absolutely insane IMO.