Who is #1

mdhunter

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Everybody has a favorite, right? We all know who was voted Colorado's sexiest Elk Hunter in 2014.

My question is "which western state is #1 for non residents to apply in? Is your opinion based on draw fairness, favorite species, financial?

Sometimes us "east coast" hunters forget that many of you "western hunters" are actually non resident hunters also. So, which state (that isn't your home state) is your favorite?
 
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npaden

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I apply in a lot of western states. I tend to get to actually hunt in just a few of them though.

I've been lucky to draw a lot of good tags in Wyoming and taken some great animals there.

I've also been lucky to draw some decent tags in New Mexico - mainly before they went to only 6% allocation to nonguided nonresidents though.

I apply in Arizona, Nevada, Utah, Idaho and Colorado but have never actually drawn a tag in any of those states though.
 

Big Fin

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Man, that's a tough one. I'm partial to the big country of Montana where I live, but if I had to pick my #1 based on fairness and price, it would be.............Arizona late season rifle. These hunts are really, even if a little crowded. If you backpack hunt, you will get away from the crowds. The price is not out of hand. And, you should draw at least twice every decade.

That said, if you told me I could only pick one weapon/season/state for the rest of my life and it had to be a tag a non-resident could draw every five years, it would be........Hmmmmm.

Of the half dozen elk hunts I do in western states every year, I think if I had to be "stuck" with one weapon/season/state it would be a toss up between Montana archery in late September and the late rifle hunts in Arizona. Flip a coin. The coin flip is - Montana archery in late September.
 

mdhunter

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I apply in a bunch of states and have drawn some good tags over the years. I end up favoring then states that have been most generous to me with both tags and animals. With that said, for me the winner is Wyoming.
 
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This is a tough one.. I will go with Montana, but I'm partial I lived there for 3 years and plan on living there again. It's really hard to pick because each state has great advantages. I think we need a survey....
 

noharleyyet

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12 straight memorable years in Dink and Oak's beautiful hospitable state makes me partial....and lucky.
 

NoWiser

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I only just started hunting out west 3 years ago so my experience is very limited. Since then, I've hunted Montana deer, Wyoming elk, and New Mexico elk.

Hands down, without a doubt, New Mexico was the best experience. But, I don't expect to hunt there more than once every couple of decades. Even though I've found a way to take advantage of it, the outfitter subsidy and landowner tags really bother me.

Montana was fun, but the price is absurd. I may hunt there this year if I don't draw a tag elsewhere. For the reason of price alone, it won't top my list.

Wyoming would have to win for me, so far. Elk tags are cheaper than Montana and not overly difficult to draw. I had a good hunt on just a plain old general tag, even though I came home empty handed. Though I haven't hunted antelope or deer out there I know that I could very often if I wanted to. Plus, you can hunt both archery and rifle on the same tag. If only they could get rid of that dang wilderness law it would distance itself from the other states even more.

I'm hoping that in the next couple of years I can give Colorado and Arizona a try so that I can add them to my list.
 

LCH

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I have limited experience in Colorado, Montana, and Wyoming.

I would hate to limit myself to 1 state, but IMO Wyoming is the best blend of tag prices/availability, hunting pressure, and drive time from where I'm at. I had a tag for elk, deer, and antelope last year as a NR with zero points for any species, and filled 2 out of 3 tags. Only reason I didn't fill the antelope tag was that I got homesick and headed home early.

That said, I'm planning 2 trips back to Montana this year, 1 with a bear tag and the other just for a week of backpacking. But I'll be back in Wyoming this fall with an antelope and possibly an elk tag.
 

JohnCushman

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I moved to Colorado after I retired from the Army largely in part because of hunting shows I'd watch from back East and the cost of living where I live now. I love the hunting opportunities in Colorado, but I still love hunting antelope in Wyoming.
 

mdhunter

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I saw those guys in concert at spring break in Daytona Beach 1987. It was a free concert on the beach with all the adult beverages you could consume. Is it wrong to admit I had fun?
 

Dinkshooter

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Mule deer-Fairly obvious
Elk-Wyoming. I'd say NM but only drawing 1 tag in a lifetime is silly
Lope-Wyoming

I like elk hunting in Montana however, the state of Wyoming is in the way and makes for a long drive.
 

LopeHunter

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CO if I could only apply in one state as NR. In 15 years, have drawn some nice tags there and hunting in the mountains is an adventure full of fantastic scenery.

WY is second choice as the animal quality is very good on the tags I have drawn but the cost for points to stay in the game is quite high.

States change the NR game sooner or later. I had several nice NM tags but then the NR pool was drastically cut making it difficult to draw even low quality hunts. I will most likely never hunt there again.
 

Festus

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I have been to CO, ID, WY, and MT for deer and elk. I would have to pick Montana as my favorite, even for the price.
I have been building points in WY and CO, so I plan to return to them eventually (in between Montana hunts).
Looking back at pictures of ID hunts I have to admit there's just something about that rough, steep, nasty place that beckons me and my pony back someday also.
 

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