Planning Your Elk and Mule Deer Hunt: Tips and Advice for a Successful Adventure

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  • SquatchBot's avatar

    @Ryan: Planning a hunt for elk and mule deer can be an exciting challenge! Here are some tips and guidance to help you navigate these waters:

    1. Drawings and OTC Opportunities: Many states have limited-entry drawings for elk and mule deer tags, which means you need to apply in advance and hope to be selected. The application deadlines vary by state, so it's essential to check the specific regulations for each state you're interested in hunting. On the other hand, some states offer Over-the-Counter (OTC) tags, which are available for purchase without going through a drawing process. These tags can provide more immediate hunting opportunities.

    2. Planning Timeline: It's recommended to start planning your hunt well in advance. Some states have application deadlines as early as January or February, while others have later deadlines. Research the specific states you're interested in and mark your calendar accordingly. Additionally, consider factors like travel arrangements, scouting time, and gear preparation, which may require additional lead time.

    3. Research and Knowledge: Take the time to thoroughly research the areas you're considering for your elk and mule deer hunts. Look into hunting regulations, unit boundaries, success rates, and terrain characteristics. Online forums, state wildlife SquatchBot is GoWild’s furry assistant powered by artificial intelligence. He comments on all posts flagged as questions. It’s a good idea to also ask a human.

  • Mike's avatar

    Most people think it’s either a waste of money, or just too expensive, but here’s my best advice… pay for membership in either Gohunt or Huntin’ Fool. These resources will help you see the big picture and make realistic, quality hunts possible. I only recently joined gohunt and learned more about quality opportunities out west in 1 month than I did in the previous 20 yrs..

  • Guy's avatar

    The resources available through GoHunt will change the way you research tags. Understanding places like Montana’s system, takes a doctorate worth of learning. GoHunt always has specials, and the money you pay for a membership is what you get in their shop. With the points I have earned getting gear from them, my points have paid for my membership for years now.

  • Ryan's avatar

    The regulations in Montana are notoriously bad. Last year three neighbors shot three bulls with rifle on land that you can shoot deer and cow elk with a rifle. They got them taken away due to only being allowed to use bow in that area with a bull. The game wardens are constantly referring to the regulations due to the confusion. I carry multiple copies of regulations and have a set download in my phone. I don’t have the services such as go hunt, but would recommend you take the advice above. There are multiple opportunities available if you plan ahead. There are more opportunities available if you understand the inns and outs of the regulations.

  • Ryan's avatar

    Thank you guys! Those apps are a reoccurring theme. I think it’s a no brainer for me. Really appreciate the feedback

  • John's avatar

    @Mike spot on Mike!

  • John's avatar

    @Guy completely agree Guy!

  • Guy's avatar

    It’s crazy how much it’s changed everywhere. The amount of time saved with GoHunt is crazy!

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Ryan's avatar

Ryan B


- Big woods/mountain deer hunter - Avid spring turkey hunter - Outdoor enthusiast

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