I have been up the Paiute side out of Bishop... It's a tough hike up to the border of D-7 but it is some good looking' country. You'll need to drop off to the West a ways to start finding animals. Don't go too late or you'll find out that they already shed and moved into transition zones awaiting the rut...
The drainage to the West of Desolation lake and Paiute both hold bucks but like I said... It's tough country and once you're at desolation lake, you'll find that it's a HUGE, FLAT slab of granite for a long ways! You gotta get to the West side and drop off into the drainages to find animals... The wife and I tried to day hunt it once... That was a little much as we left the trailhead at 1 AM and reached the West side by daybreak, hunted all morning to the NW and headed out that evening... 17.6 miles... Both of us were beat but she didn't complain... I think I whined the most about my knees, coming down the East side again lol... I'm getting old
Last edited by Graylight; 03-28-2012 at 09:40 PM.
"This is A Way of Life"
If you get over to the Mammoth area, I can give you directions for a much shorter backpack hunt. Park at Devils Postpile parking lot and go to the Postpile, keep going south along the river and you'll find a foot/pack stock bridge across the river. After you cross the river the trail takes you to a junction where the Muir Trail takes off, take the left trail to King Creek and Beck Lakes. It is about 3 or 4 miles to the creek. I've camped there and hunted. Lots of deer, but nothing is even near timberline.
Cross the creek and the trail goes up and out of the canyon, a bit of a hike...all uphill. Near the top is a trail going to the right to Beck Lakes. There is some good hunting there, right at timberline and fishing too. Continue past what is called Summit Meadows (not much of a meadow anymore) on over the ridge. Down to what is called Upper Stairway Meadow. Good camping and water. Lots of deer and access to some great high country. Total distance from the trailhead is about 8 miles and the meadow is right at 9,000. If you decide to do any of this, get the Devils Post Pile Quadrange topo map.
A side bar. Summit Meadows is where then Gov Ronald Reagan rode into to hold a press conference to kill the Trans Sierra Highway.
Last edited by Colorado Cowboy; 03-29-2012 at 07:31 AM.
Cowboy Action Shooter; Endowment Life Member-NRA
The Original Rocket Scientist-Retired
"My Father always considered a walk in the mountains as the equivalent of church going."
Thanks for the write up on information Colorado Cowboy, Graylight and Red 1. Seeing all these pictures and stories has me wanting to explore D7 some more. I typically try for X12 or some different zones more up north when not getting drawn for X12 but D7 is calling me now this season and preseason too. The history and pioneer type spirit I've heard on the thread has me wanting to explore it some more. Thanks again!
Just a quick update I talked to the biologist he had a lot of info and was very friendly and willing to answer any Questions I had.
The biologist that I talked to deals with the southern part of D7. There are three herds that he monitors. The Wishon-Courtright area holds the highest density of deer. He suggested that I try and get as far away from high pressure areas, but didn't have any specific area he would suggest. When I told him about how many years I have been skunked up there, he was not surprised, and just said that the kill percentage is very low in D7 - which I already knew. He told me that if I wanted to see what a forest is supposed to be, that I should see inside the forested areas that Edison owns. He said if I had a friend that worked for Edison, or could get permission to hunt Edison lands that I might have better luck. Forestry practices in National Forest are either that they don't manage it at all, or they go in and plant a tree every foot, which does not create the optimum deer habitat. I am trying to sum up a lot of information, but he really knew his stuff. Don't take it from me, you should call yourself. I know I will be calling again.
Took my first archery buck in that part of D7 back in '96. Got him hanging on the wall as I type this. It used to hold quite a few good deer, but not so much lately and thats why I changed units a few years back. Good luck there this year and let us know how you do.