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If it were me, I'd choose a unit less than 2 hours from home and hunt it in Sept. You'll scout it more, makes it easier for family and friends to tag along, makes it easier during the hunt to run a kid back for a test or if one of them had to work. Any of the LE units less than 2 hours from home will get you the opportunities to shoot a mature bull.

The later dates make ML hunts a tough go as the rut may be winding down (unless this late rut action continues). Late season hunts can be good, but that is much less interactive than the rut hunts, there can be road closures and you'll find more broken bulls.

Vanilla needs to wait to draw until he can share points with one kid and mentor the other on his tag. No need for him to shoot large bull elk when he has caught Lahontan cutthroats........

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If it were me, I'd choose a unit less than 2 hours from home and hunt it in Sept. You'll scout it more, makes it easier for family and friends to tag along, makes it easier during the hunt to run a kid back for a test or if one of them had to work. Any of the LE units less than 2 hours from home will get you the opportunities to shoot a mature bull.

The later dates make ML hunts a tough go as the rut may be winding down (unless this late rut action continues). Late season hunts can be good, but that is much less interactive than the rut hunts, there can be road closures and you'll find more broken bulls.

Vanilla needs to wait to draw until he can share points with one kid and mentor the other on his tag. No need for him to shoot large bull elk when he has caught Lahontan cutthroats........

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The later dates for the black powder have me wondering this year as well. Might only have 2-3 days of potential rut action. But still should be a doable hunt I would think.
 

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Vanilla needs to wait to draw until he can share points with one kid and mentor the other on his tag. No need for him to shoot large bull elk when he has caught Lahontan cutthroats........
Some of us like to have our cake and eat it too! :) Last year the trip for lahontans got scrapped when the reservation closed to nonmembers. But it's back on soon! Stay tuned...

Let's be honest, I'm going to find a way to never draw an elk tag. As I've stated before, I'm an idiot!
 

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I think I would do a public land hunt.

Vanilla: I have looked at some of the odds and where I might have a good chance but knowing that and what I might actually find when heading out are two different things. I know Northern Utah fairly well, but Central and Southern where better elk are located, I do not. I've seen you post a lot of good things over the years.....what would you do?
If you have 3 months of PTO built up, you'll maybe use one quarter of that to find and scout a new area in central or southern Utah. You have plenty of time, so if you are willing to use it, I would go where you have the best chance at the best animal. That is central or southern Utah.

17 points puts you in the mix for all but the top tier units if you are trying to hunt rifle. If you go muzzy, a few more options open up, but you're still not hunting San Juan, Pahvant, Beaver, Boulder, Monroe, etc. FYI, my wife drew an early rifle tag for Manti last year with 17 points. We turned it in because even losing the point, there's a good chance of drawing it in the next year or two, and she's not in a hurry.

Here's my honest opinion. You have waited 17 years, you have 3 months PTO, and you want to take multiple people (as would I). Why not apply where you have the best possible chance at the animal you want? Who cares where it's at...You have the time, and you won't be drawing this tag again for another 25 years. Don't short yourself the experience.
 

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After reading through the entire thread, here are a couple more thoughts:

I hunted the muzzy LE elk on the Manti in 2014. Never stepped foot on the unit before drawing the tag. Was competely overwhelmed by the size of the unit at first, but got some good intel from some folks that knew it well and this narrowed things down to 3-4 potential spots. Probably scouted a grand total of 6-8 days prior to the hunt over multiple weekends and just prior to the hunt. Killed a 6 point on the 6th day of the 9 day hunt and was in elk every day.

If I can do it, anyone can. Just takes effort. Kudos for wanting to share it with family. As has been said, realistically assess your goals and then make the best plan possible to reach them. Don't compromise because you won't get this chance again for a LONG time!
 

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id look hard into that box elder pilot mtn tag, you can hunt the utah and nevada side of the mtn, theres some excellent elk out there and not to far to go out and scout on weekends. i have 4 points and and have been putting in for archery now that i drew my pronghorn tag time to focus on some bulls ;)
 

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I agree with that.
I have 14 points and put in for muzzle.
I'll bet he draws before I do !!
:mrgreen:
Man time goes by too fast, I didn't know it had been that long since you got your elk.

Got my fingers crossed with 0 points my friend said he wouldn't hunt it without me and wants me to put in with him as a group, I don't remember how many points he has so that will hopefully bump me up a little.

TOP, another angel got his wings.
 

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It is a bit hard to believe. It almost seems like Y2k was just yesterday.
That was a fun hunt. My first archery bull. Scouted and hunted by myself. But, had to have help to get him out. Came out in 3 pieces and we got back to town at 5:30 am. All of us still had to go to work except one. He still gets heat.
Would be fun to get the muzzle tag before I get too old to hunt PanguItch again. :shock:
Love to hunt that hill.
 
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