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2016 Uinta Elk?

13684 Views 39 Replies 20 Participants Last post by  Clarq
Hello all,

I'm brand new to the forum and am looking for a little help or constructive criticism on my hunt plan for next year. Definitely not looking for honey-holes or 10 digit grids, just a point in the right direction.

I'm an active duty Marine that grew up on the east coast as a whitetail hunter but have had the fortune of being stationed on CA/NV border. I'm definitely new to western hunting but have experienced some succes knocking down a couple CA mule deer (eastern Sierra Nevadas) on solo backpack hunts and a Cow elk in CO last year out of a drop camp. Basically, I don't think I'm completely clueless and am definitely not afraid of some hard work or covering some ground.

Right now my group will consist of about 4-6 guys for the Any Bull Rifle season. I have a line on renting some horses and we plan on packing in the 7th then hunting the 8th through the 15th. I want to try to get 5-7 miles off the roads, set up camp, then hunt from there. Most of the guys I'm going with are in there late 20's as well so we plan on covering some ground to try to get on some Elk.

Right now I'm looking at the Southern Slope east towards the actuall wilderness area. My main issue is finding a step off point then a general area to set up camp. I live about 8 hours drive away, so after some serious google Earth and map work, I'm hoping to go backpack and check it out this spring.

From all the reading I have done so far, it looks like I should expect high pressure by the roads and rugged country and low elk densities in the back country.

Any suggestions or advice is greatly appreciated!

Thanks, Jon
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It takes a few years to learn the uintas as far as elk patterns and where they are. But when you do and consistently get on bulls with an open bull tag in utah. It is a reward like no other

I have been lucky enough to get 3 nice 6 points and some rag horns over the years. And I smile just as much if not more over those then my limited entry bull.
It's hard work but the reward is worth it you are on the right path with the south slope. PM sent
Here are some general season bulls I hope this works not sure how to download from my phone. But so far I am working on bull number 7 from the uintas this up coming fall


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Gotta love the south slope of the uintas


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You have done really WELL!
Thanks goofy this one is my biggest general season bull still in the taxidermy process could use a dusting


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Once again, thanks for the varying perspectives and suggestions, its exactly what I was looking for. To circle back on a couple questions and comments:

-As far as horses go and my experiences with them, a rodeo in the back country is exactly what I don't want... If I pursue Utah, I got a arrangement worked out with the wrangler to help with the pack in & pack out to alleviate some of the stress. We would be keeping 2-3 horses in Camp. Still a lot of work, but manageable.

-I have looked heavily into Idaho and Colorado and have not ruled these states out, but... haven't really found a "foothold" in either one to start building off. Last season, I had the fortune (or spent...) of being packed in 7 plus miles in the back country and saw 14 elk over seven days, finally killing a Cow on the last night with a 2nd Season OTC Tag. My friend, was not so fortunate. He is also in his late 20's, in great shape and highly motivated, yet with a LE 1st Season CO Rifle Hunt he couldn't out-hike the roadside crowds and did not see a single Elk the two days he scouted and the 5 he hunted.... I know individual experiences, weather and everything else varies, and that being in the back country away from OTC hunting pressure does not guarantee getting into Elk... but the majority of evidence suggests it increases your chances.... With that said, I'm definitely open to any suggestions such as units or season's in Colorado or Idaho that anyone is willing to offer up.

-I like the Spike/Cow Hunt idea and will pitch it to my group to see if its something we would be collectively interested in. Along the same lines, has anyone had any success with the Elk Control Permits in the South Slope Units? From some initial research it looks like a great way to increase the flexibility of the hunt so we could take a Bull or Cow.

-Finally, CPAjeff and some of the others nailed it for me... Last year I went on what I thought would be the hunt of a lifetime and got exactly that. Now I'm hooked.... I have one more season before I get orders back to the East Coast and the logistics, work and family commitments of planning and executing something like this will be unrealistic so I want to take advantage while I got the shot... I'm in no way, shape or form "above" truck camping or setting up by a road as it offers mobility and you can bring a lot more creature comforts, I just don't want to do it with 500 other people.

Keep it coming and thanks again!!

I say go for it do a pack in hunt in the uintas it is a beautiful place the experience alone would be worth .
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