Help scheduling first Elk hunt with Outfitter


Nov 28, 2015
NE Iowa
Decided I'm not getting any younger and want to Elk hunt this year in CO or WY. Since first Elk hunt, want to go with an Outfitter and guided hunt.

Don't know how to get started. Been reading Eastman for a year now, only have 1 PT in WY. I know there are OTC tags in CO.

Are there "packages" of tags I can purchase through an Outfitter? How do I look for these?

Any help is appreciated.

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Veteran member
Mar 28, 2016
Gypsum, Co
There will be outfitters that have land owner tags available in the harder to draw units but you would need to talk to the outfitter to see just what he has available.

As for outfitters for a hunt this coming seasons you will need to figure out just where you want to hunt and then do a few hours research on them.

Colorado Cowboy

Veteran member
Jun 8, 2011
Dolores, Colorado
What kind of a hunt do you want to do? Horseback/ backcountry tent, ranch hunt staying in lodge, atvs/truck, how much walking do you want to do? These are questions that you need to answer before you talk to an outfitter. Once you decide what kind of a hunt you want, then tell the outfitter, it could make a difference, especially private land hunts & tag availability....and OH yes..cost too!


Veteran member
Feb 25, 2014
Eastern Nebraska
With one point in Wyoming you can draw a general tag in the special drawing. This opens up a good chunk of the state. There are many outfitters guiding in general areas both public and private land. Are you wanting a high country pack in hunt, private land hunt, or something in between? If your goal is to just shoot an elk, I would go for a private land hunt. Let us know some specifics and we will try to help.


Active Member
Mar 13, 2014
Here's a few things to look for, to ask and to find out ETC, as you research find and book with an outfitter.
There's several ways to do this,
Search urself find the outfitter
Hire a booking agent to find an outfitter for you

Next, figure out your budget, remember tag, plus travel then the hunt. Guided hunts can be $3,000 to $10,000, does more money necessarily mean better or less money mean worse? Not really it's about amenities, quality of animals, private vs public, # of hunters ETC.

What kind of hunt do you want?
- nice cabin leave each morning and hunt, may drive to area then hike, may horseback to area and hunt, may hike straight from cabin
- wall tent in the woods, hike from camp, horseback from camp
- stay at ur own choice hotel, and drive to the hunting area each day, hike, horseback etc

Are you there for a huge bull, any bull or meat

Once you've answered these then that will narrow down your Outfitters. Now comes finding out what comes with the hunt of you book, guide, cook, what's provided in camp/lodge, food menus, game care after the hunt, meat storage, opportunity percentage, success percentage,

A $3000 hunt may be cheap with average success but the food is amazing and camp is cozy. A $10,000 hunt may have huge bulls with average success but camp is rough and food is beans and potatoes. Or there's a $3000 hunt with an amazing camp great food and low success. A $10,000 camp may have average success with luxury food a camp fit for kings. So both sides of the spectrum can be good or bad. Lots of questions to find out everything you can.


Very Active Member
Idaho outfitters also have guaranteed tags for their hunters enabling you to hunt a better than average area without drawing with the right outfitter.... big questions to ask the outfitter...How many return hunters do they have yearly? How many guides and how many have been there for more than a season or two.. and most important, a list of current and past clients both successful and unsuccessful for you to call and get a real perspective of the outfit

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Nov 28, 2015
NE Iowa
Overwhelmed by the excellent help here so quickly!

Some responses:
-wall tent in field would be great
-meat and experience are higher priority than a trophy bull
- game care and meat storage needed
- I like to hike
- I like to eat, but got plenty of fat reserves to pull me through ;)
- Plan on driving out to CO or WY, I live in Iowa.

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Very Active Member
Jun 28, 2015
Southern Indiana
Too late for Wyoming this year, NR draw has already taken place. Lots of other states (CO, ID, MT, NM) where you could probably put a hunt together though.


Veteran member
Feb 21, 2012
Two Harbors, Minnesota
My first guided elk hunt was a shot-in-the dark CO 3rd season hunt. I ended up with a 320" 6x6, but our group only went 2 for 8. The listed "success rate" for guided CO hunts is around 25%, while in WY is 58%. Those stats are from the respective states Outdoor Guides Assoc. A wilderness guided hunt is what you make of it, and if you have never hunted elk before, and don't have an experienced person to go with you, it may be your best option. Many of the good outfitters are booked a couple years in advance, so if you find a spot this year, check your references (including non-successful hunters).
Send Gypsumreaper a PM, as he is a guide in CO in a rugged area. He has been very helpful to others on this forum and to me personally, although I have never hunted with him. It is also good to apply with a partner because you can share travel expenses, and most hunts are 2 on 1. You will pay extra for a 1 on 1 hunt. You will have a far more enjoyable experience if you go for the overall experience and don't totally focus on just shooting an elk. It may happen, and it may not, and luck is always a factor. So, GOOD LUCK.


Very Active Member
Feb 23, 2013
Trying to get on with a top notch outfitter for this year, this late....
I would say take your time, start looking hard now for next year.
As was stated you missed out on Wyoming draw this year.

Take time to really research what you want.
There are so many different elk hunts out there and
Not all (even if they are good) are going to be the kind
Of experience you really want.

I have been on more than my share of hunts. And the only
Bad hunt I was on was a late cancellation BC goat hunt..02