CO OTC ELk Hunt 2020

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CO OTC ELk Hunt 2020

Unread postby bowtechjim » Thu Aug 29, 2019 6:14 am

I'm starting the early stages of planning an elk hunt for 2020 in Colorado. I've started looking at statistics and have my units narrowed to an A. B. C. D. E. I know the typical resources such as Elk101, GoHunt, Onx, and Born and Raised Outdoors. I've been consuming as much information as possible. I'm thinking of going for 10 days for archery and am ready to learn and work. I'm thinking of going before muzzleloader but I'm not sure. What dates would you guys recommend? I'm sure it depends on a ton of factors? And any other things to think of while I'm planning that I could be missing? Right now the plan is a solo hunt but that could change.


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Re: CO OTC ELk Hunt 2020

Unread postby stash59 » Thu Aug 29, 2019 7:21 am

Kinda depends on the type of experience your looking to have. If you want to hear alot of bugling. I'd go after September 12th til maybe the 25th. Course that's also when you'll have the most hunting pressure too!! And you still may not hear alot of bugling during daylight hours.

If you chose an area that has more openings. Where glassing from high spots would work well. Then do spot and stalks. I'd go as early as possible. You'll have a little less competition. Sitting on water may work well too.
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Re: CO OTC ELk Hunt 2020

Unread postby bowtechjim » Thu Aug 29, 2019 7:59 am

stash59 wrote:Kinda depends on the type of experience your looking to have. If you want to hear alot of bugling. I'd go after September 12th til maybe the 25th. Course that's also when you'll have the most hunting pressure too!! And you still may not hear alot of bugling during daylight hours.

If you chose an area that has more openings. Where glassing from high spots would work well. Then do spot and stalks. I'd go as early as possible. You'll have a little less competition. Sitting on water may work well too.


I think the areas I'm looking at right now are petty thick and spot stalking would be a little tough. Water may be an option. I haven't put any boots on the ground in the areas ever so it's all based on cyber scouting
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Re: CO OTC ELk Hunt 2020

Unread postby moondoondude » Thu Aug 29, 2019 11:36 am

Don't worry about the muzzleloader season if you are hunting OTC units. If you look at the amount of muzzleloader tags vs. Archery hunters in the unit, it is pretty much a wash with pressure since comparably, so few muzxleloader tags are drawn. Pressure is pretty consistent throughout the season I think.

Don't worry too much about dates, as long as you are out there the last 3 weeks of September you can get into bugling (even before and after that). There are too many factors that influence bugling and what we observe in terms of rutting behavior during that period to hammer down dates and say "these are best". Focus more on areas that you think will have elk. If you want me to help you and give you whatever advice I may have in helping you get ready or even help you with maps, PM me and I'd be happy to help.

Finding a good line on onx is huge, I pick a ton of spots and find a good line so I can get in and out of there if needed. Picking a ton of spots, relatively close together, is ideal since it is pretty easy to tell when elk are around. If they're not there, on to the next. That's the thing about OTC units- elk aren't where they would be if people weren't around. They are where they are because people are around.
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Re: CO OTC ELk Hunt 2020

Unread postby FRH » Thu Aug 29, 2019 2:29 pm

Not sure if it's true or not but I thought I heard on a podcast , (possibly the jay scott podcast) that CO is thinking about eliminating the OTC tags and going to a draw system for all units. I would assume it's going to be along the lines of South Dakota deer draw, where it's pretty much a guaranteed draw but you will still need to apply. Just something to keep an eye on over the winter.
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Re: CO OTC ELk Hunt 2020

Unread postby Rich M » Thu Aug 29, 2019 9:22 pm

FRH wrote:Not sure if it's true or not but I thought I heard on a podcast , (possibly the jay scott podcast) that CO is thinking about eliminating the OTC tags and going to a draw system for all units. I would assume it's going to be along the lines of South Dakota deer draw, where it's pretty much a guaranteed draw but you will still need to apply. Just something to keep an eye on over the winter.


Not true. They talked about it but did not. Some season dates were changed, that's about it for the next 6 years. Then they may do the draw system.
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Re: CO OTC ELk Hunt 2020

Unread postby bowtechjim » Fri Aug 30, 2019 1:30 am

moondoondude wrote:Don't worry about the muzzleloader season if you are hunting OTC units. If you look at the amount of muzzleloader tags vs. Archery hunters in the unit, it is pretty much a wash with pressure since comparably, so few muzxleloader tags are drawn. Pressure is pretty consistent throughout the season I think.

Don't worry too much about dates, as long as you are out there the last 3 weeks of September you can get into bugling (even before and after that). There are too many factors that influence bugling and what we observe in terms of rutting behavior during that period to hammer down dates and say "these are best". Focus more on areas that you think will have elk. If you want me to help you and give you whatever advice I may have in helping you get ready or even help you with maps, PM me and I'd be happy to help.

Finding a good line on onx is huge, I pick a ton of spots and find a good line so I can get in and out of there if needed. Picking a ton of spots, relatively close together, is ideal since it is pretty easy to tell when elk are around. If they're not there, on to the next. That's the thing about OTC units- elk aren't where they would be if people weren't around. They are where they are because people are around.


Thanks for the info. I may PM you when it get's closer to time.

I've started marking some waypoints on onx but it's hard in unfamiliar county without knowing what pressure will be like. The unit I've been looking at the most seems to have relatively low pressure compared to some units but there could be a reason for that.
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Re: CO OTC ELk Hunt 2020

Unread postby tbunao » Fri Aug 30, 2019 2:53 am

Cody rich with The Rich outdoors podcast has 2 with Mark Lively that are amazing e-scouting podcast when it comes to elk. Mark imo is by far the most technical I’ve ever seen. He also has some YouTube tutorials. It will help with getting familiar with your area.
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Re: CO OTC ELk Hunt 2020

Unread postby bowtechjim » Fri Aug 30, 2019 3:55 am

Also, I know it's kind of frowned upon to discuss units. But if anyone would like to or could give me some advice on the units I'm looking at feel free to PM and I would be really happy to discuss them with you. I have a list of a top 6 right now.
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Re: CO OTC ELk Hunt 2020

Unread postby moondoondude » Fri Aug 30, 2019 8:52 am

bowtechjim wrote:Also, I know it's kind of frowned upon to discuss units. But if anyone would like to or could give me some advice on the units I'm looking at feel free to PM and I would be really happy to discuss them with you. I have a list of a top 6 right now.


I would be more than happy to help you narrow that down as well. Same thing with finding spots within those units, it is tough to know what kind of habitat to look into and what to look for on a map until you have found elk in a few places out there.
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Re: CO OTC ELk Hunt 2020

Unread postby Uncle Lou » Mon Sep 02, 2019 6:47 am

Just cover ground, have to find elk to kill elk. Go with a great attitude, and have fun. I have done 3 solo DIY elk hunts in CO, the first two I did not have a clue, but that did not stop me. Last year I had four days to hunt. I missed, but had a blast. You shoot whatever you want, but any elk is an accomplishment.

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Re: CO OTC ELk Hunt 2020

Unread postby camelcluch » Tue Sep 03, 2019 7:35 am

You left a lot of questions to get you the right answers. One I really look at is what type of terrain do you want to hunt? I have spots in lower sage, junipers and oak brush all the way to high mountain. There are elk in every unit west of I25. There is a ton of difference from place to place.
Muzzy guns don’t really brother me much so I would take the two weeks that interest you the most. Ask any questions you want.
About pressure, this is Colorado and this pressure. You have to deal with it.
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Re: CO OTC ELk Hunt 2020

Unread postby vtbuck » Tue Sep 03, 2019 11:05 am

I’m pretty sure our group is going the first 2 weeks of the Colorado archery opener. As of now that’s September 2 of 2020.
I’m not sure what otc units were looking at.
I’d suggest getting where you are going a day or 3 before so your body can adjust cause altitude sickness sucks. Get in shape and ask questions to guys who been out there. I’ll be driving fellow beasts nuts in the coming months for any info I can obtain.
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Re: CO OTC ELk Hunt 2020

Unread postby camelcluch » Tue Sep 03, 2019 5:29 pm

What type of hunt? Packing in or car camp? There is a big difference in prep and needed equipment. As far as other prep; start practicing long distance. I spend most of my time at 80 -110 yards. We shoot a bit further than eastern hunting. Get your gear and test it out in the yard or local quick trips. Try to get into shape but the mountain is going to kick your but and let you know she is in charge. Embrace the suck. Number one on the list, stay positive. Remember it’s elk hunting and your are having fun.
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Re: CO OTC ELk Hunt 2020

Unread postby BigCedarJack » Wed Sep 04, 2019 9:35 am

I think 2020 is going to be the year for me too.


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