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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have 9 points and should draw archery deer on the Books this year. The Book Cliffs is a remote and diverse place that provides a variety of different hunting opportunities--road hunting, truck camping and day hikes of 1-2 miles from the roads, wilderness pack in hunting etc, or a combo of one or more. I think I have some good locations "map scouted" for any one of these options

What would you guys do if you had the tag? There are appealing elements to all three--I'd love to shoot a small 4-point from the road if one of my kids was with me, but I'd also love to chase isolated big bucks on remote ridges if it meant a chance at a bigger deer and an exciting hunting experience.

I like adventure, I like getting away from other people. However, as I've gotten older, I'm not quite as intense or driven as I used to be. More and more, I'm interested in the experience as much as the trophy. As far as deer quality, I'd be really happy with a 150" 4x4. Thoughts? Opinions?
 

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In my younger days we would pack in and set up a night camp the night before the deer opener so that we would be right where we wanted to be at first light after putting the bucks to bed the night before. This was usually a 1-1 1/2 mile hike from the truck in a isolated canyon. Now I just look at that canyon from above and remember what it was like in it and how much work and fun we had in it.

Now if I had a archery tag I would hunt the pockets on the south side of the Divide Road. The only problem with them is that if the deer goes much further than 50 yards after being hit with a arrow you are looking at some real mean country to get them out.

Other than that there are plenty of places that you can have a great time while staying 1/2 mile off of a road and the only hunters you are likely to see are the one riding a wheeler on the roads.

So to answer your question I'd hike a ways off of the road and camp in luxury.
 

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IMO, it all depends on who you're with. I would try to make it memorable for all involved. I was introduced to the Book Cliffs by a guy who is almost 60 now, and if I draw a tag out there before he's too old to come along, I'll take him back out there and work within his limitations. I feel like it would be a good way to pay him back, and it would be a lot of fun.

If he can't go for any reason, I'd take an adventurous friend I have and do some serious hiking. I have the most fun there when I'm as far from everyone/everything as possible. It can feel very remote in certain places there, and I like that a lot.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
So to answer your question I'd hike a ways off of the road and camp in luxury.
This is the option that I'm probably most likely to pursue. Still, I can't help but dream of an epic backcountry adventure and really big bucks. :)
 

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Years ago , here is what I did archery in the Books.

Set up camp on Tenmile knoll,
Hiked south down Diamond ridge,
2 miles there are some GREAT pockets that held some of the BEST bucks.

Hunt it mid week-- early-----------------TRUST ME...
 

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Years ago , here is what I did archery in the Books.

Set up camp on Tenmile knoll,
Hiked south down Diamond ridge,
2 miles there are some GREAT pockets that held some of the BEST bucks.

Hunt it mid week-- early-----------------TRUST ME...
I can picture where you were at exactly and with the fire that went through there in 2002 it is even better now. I hunted a lot of that area before they closed it. But that kind of hunting in for young kids anymore unless you have access to horses.

I shot my 343" bull elk just north of Tenmile Knoll back in 2001.
 

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I should be able to draw a Book Cliffs tag in about 3-5 years. When I do we'll be packing the horses up and headed into the roadless area. That is the appeal of the Books for me...the opportunity to pack in 5-10 miles and get away from people. In the two opportunities we have had to do that we have run into all of 1 other hunter.
 

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Man you guys are making me want to bale on the current unit I am trying to draw and see what a book cliffs hunt is all about. Book cliffs and San juan are the only two units I haven't hiked around in this great state
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I appreciate the insights. You all have given me some options and places to consider. I may PM some of you to talk about a few spots I am considering in particular.
 
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