Interesting read fellas. I am new to the site and new to the west - 6 years in CO. I will be hunting WY soon - I have 3 points for antelope and 1 for deer. I have found both extremes in info sharing while hunting in CO -very helpful and very tightlipped. I agree that we all cant give out our honey holes as the pressure can ruin it. Also Grizz - CO has done a good job (I think) of managing their deer back from bad winter kills. Specific units and seasons limits pressure as much as possible, all draw. I will be hunting the gunnison area with the rifle this year and I have seen quite a few nice 4x4's while elk hunting.
I was going to pile up points for deer but a comment bout hunting an area freq. to get to know it makes more sense to me. Might apply in 2015 for a deer tag.
There are definitely pros and cons to playing the point game out west. It really all depends on what you are looking to get out of your hunt. I am also new to this forum and was reading the initial spark if you will of this thread. Hunting is exactly that, hunting, and we all have different experiences based on many different factors including our experience level, research abilities, and willingness to hunt. I personally hunted deer in unit 82 with a Region W tag and had a phenomenal hunt. I took my dad, we came from out of state, never touched foot in Wyoming to hunt deer before and we ended up seeing right around 90 bucks in 9 days. A lot of research and we were literally ended up right in the middle of the bucks. It pays to learn an area by hunting it year after year but when you do your due diligence then follow it up with good old hard hunting which could actually be simply glassing for hours each day then you can have success in many ways and many different/states units. I have been very impressed with Wyoming their management practices and the accurate information their biologist and wardens have shared with me the last couple of years.
tim8121, nothing wrong with building points and nothing wrong with hunting the same place year after year, its all what you are looking to get out of it which drives all of our hunting desires/obsessions.
Just DIY - Just want a good fun hunt, see alot of critters, hopefully fill the tag. No holding out for B&C animals for me.
There are definitely plenty of options out there in multiple states that will fit your criteria. I would venture to say that Wyoming and Idaho are good opportunity states for hunt options as well as trophy potential. Both states have there units which are loaded with deer and some of those units don't take any points to draw and as far as Idaho it is a great "go to" or back up state as most tags are over the counter and they don't have a point system. PM me if you want to get more specific and I would be happy to hopefully answer any questions you have.
Old but, a great read.......
I kinda like TeddyBear's dry sense of humor. I think spending a week hunting with him would be sheer entertainment. He just needed to rant a little and some folks took it personally. The problem with putting your thoughts in writing..........each reader has a different take on what the writer really means.
I'm just beginning my learning curve on Wyoming. I can relate to some of TB's frustrations. I've talked to 2 wardens so far and didn't get much more than general information to specific questions. Pretty much canned answers. I can only imagine they are more than tired of people calling them. So, I got about what I expected.
Wyoming does some things well and some things not so well. The biggest issue I see as a novice trying to learn the Wyoming ropes has to do with access to the public land areas (specifically BLM). There are a lot of acres of public land cut off by private property.
As I spend my time reading and researching (about 200hrs now), I continually run across stories of frustrated sportsmen that are kept from hunting public owned land (their land, the land they pay taxes to manintain) by a closed road or a strip of private property. Crowded hunting is one of the most common complaints I read about over and over. If all the BLM land in the state of Wyoming was accessable to hunt, hunters would naturally be spread out over more acres and crowding would be greatly reduced.
According to the official BLM website, The mission of the BLM is to "manage public land for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations". Emphasis on "use and enjoyment" not use or enjoyment............it is supposed to be both. So, the rancher can use it for grazing and everyone else gets to use it for whatever enjoyment they choose, like hunting. The way Wyoming has it structured, you are an instant criminal for moving across touching corners of BLM sections. That is just "wacked". I doubt the local BLM range manager gets a ticket for driving on the back road to a section of BLM ground for a forage evaluation. I also doubt the range manager has to ask permission from the land owner to cross 100ft of private ground to get to a section of BLM land. The tax payer funds the BLM and therefore pays for the maintenance of public land the rancher has locked up. Why shouldn't the taxpayer be able to access the public land on the same easement the BLM range manager uses.
I understand the politics. And, that's all it is, "politics". Some time way back when, some rancher/politicians decided this little gem of an idea could pay dividends so they manipulated the trespass laws in Wyoming to favor their interests. Now a ranch that has private property interspersed with BLM can pretty much totally control possibly twice the land they have deeded. It only cost them a token amount in grazing fees. And, if they decide to hook up with an outfitter for some pocket money, they have way more land to offer and in turn get more pocket money.
The whole premise of the Wyoming trespass law in regard to BLM land is wrong! If the land belongs to the taxpayers of the nation, the land should be accessable to those taxpayers. There should be an established right of way to every parcel of BLM land in the state. Granted, the BLM could stipulate whether that access is by foot or other mode. But it should be the same access the BLM uses.
It stands to reason, if all BLM land was truly accessable for the real owners, people would spread out, game animals in hard hunted areas would experience less hunting pressure and numbers and quality would begin to recover, outfitters would have less of a strangle hold on the ranch land they lease with BLM holdings, the resident and non-resident hunting opportunities would increase greatly and very possibly the state of Wyoming and local economy's would have more dollars from hunting revenues.
Wyoming could make it easier for all of us (residents and non-residents) if they would solve this "small town politics" antiquated trespass law problem. It seems to get quite a bit of lip service but, nobody in the state seems to be serious about getting it changed. I read the Eastmans thread titled: Public Lands in Public Hands, I thought a better title would be: Public Lands in Wyoming Rancher's Hands.
Just so you know, I'm an Idaho rancher. I understand the way land owners think. MORE LAND, MORE POWER, MORE MONEY. We all want to control our domains. But, right is right and wrong is wrong. Wyoming's trespass law is wrong and the power they give to the ranchers over public land access is more wrong.
TeddyBear wasn't all wet when he said "Wyoming is a crock", I'm saying it in a different way I guess. Solving this one Wyoming issue would have so many positive impacts for game animals I can't understand why there is no serious grass roots effort to correct it.
Well, tomorrow is a good time to maybe do something about it for the residents. There are a couple people running on platforms against the good ole boy system. There was also an article about a bill about trespassing reform in the Wyoming agriculture pamphlet deal today. But they wanted to go the other way. With GPS being more available the landowners don't want to have to prove that their land was posted and they want people doing studies and research on the land to have to get permission or be better about it anyway. You would probably have to read the article to make any sense of what I was trying to say there. If I was a landowner I would be hard pressed to let anyone on my land because of the possibility of being sued and the way I see public land treated. Pretty much every bit of public land I have been on this year was littered with beer bottles, campfire ruins, and in general a lot of mess, not to mention the way people go driving around like they don't care about the roads or driving off the roads or anything. It is good for me to get another prospective because I am sometimes in the good ole boy club and I don't really realize it. so there was some good points there Roknhs. Also there are some people who do a good job at building a relationship with the landowner (Topgun) and those are the people that get invited back every year. There was even a guy on here that I thought cultivated a relationship with me even though I didn't have a whole lot to offer, and it really makes a difference. So like OregonJim said, sometimes its a matter of what can I do better to work around the private land or even use it to my advantage. I didn't read the whole thread so I am probably way off topic.
Thanks for getting involved in the conversation Againstthewind. I don't necessarily want to Hi-Jack old TeddyBears thread but, this fight to find a way to access public land is a big deal when you are new to the Wyoming geography and you don't have very many options of areas you can draw a tag. If I knew some land owners to work with it would be a great help. The problem for a new guy is getting a chance to get to Wyoming so you can meet some land owners and start to network around to find a place to hunt. I've got the Game Dept. land owner list already. The wardens I talked to said the list is almost worthless. Land owners that allow hunting don't have to advertise for hunters, if they don't already have enough, there is an underground network, word of mouth system that fills their need. You never see members here talking about some rancher wanting hunters or how much they pay to hunt on private land. If they have a place to hunt or know of an opportunity it is never mentioned. Not here. I don't blame them, why risk screwing up the deal. I understand that. So, at least in the beginning, the new guys fumble around trying to get a tag and find a place to hunt.
I hope the political attitude on trespass in Wyoming changes. Although, I know it won't without some kind of outside pressure. The "good ole boy" network has to have an incentive to change. Probably a negative incentive...........if you don't change this you won't get that, kind of thing. For crying out loud, they don't even have to post their private land against trespass. All the responsibility is put on the hunter. Some poor guy walks off the road to a rock nob 50 yards off the road to glass the country and gets a trespassing ticket. No signs, no warning, no nothing. That is not right. Onyx Maps and Garmin probably owe the state of Wyoming 2 or 3 first born children for the curse of the trespass. It has to have had a huge impact on their sales. Here in Idaho, we have to post every 660 ft of property line for it to be legal........and I've got 3 miles of perimeter fence.
I understand the problems of slob hunters, I've got them here too. But, it's maybe 3% of the total. I don't think you can penalize 97% for the sins of 3%. Those 3% are a steady revenue source for the county legal system. Heavy fines and loss of hunting privleges for misuse of land and roads should do the trick. Instead of giving out trespassing fines, the officers can give out slob fines.
I hope others chime in on this issue. Maybe someone with some clout in Wyoming politics will notice. You can always hope...........