Wyoming Unit 74 Questions

DABAU

New Member
Jan 22, 2014
34
1
Georgia
Hello Everyone,

Yes I am new to this board and I have looked around at a lot of the posts and see some of the newbies get hammered sometimes, and rightfully so based off some of their initial questions. I'm not new to the forum etiquette as I am a member of several forums over here in my home state of Georgia. I've been researching the western states for several years now and have put together a plan to hunt various states/species starting this year and for many years to come. The research portion of every hunt is extremely enjoyable to me and I have just as much fun planning the hunt. I plan on kicking off my western adventure by going after antelope this year. I'll have 3 PP's going into this year and am planning on applying for Unit 74. It looks like it will take going into the Special Draw in order to have an almost guaranteed chance of drawing. Looks like the regular draw success will be around 40% with 3 PP's. I've been building points for my dad as well and he will have three points also. I may get creative and try to go after one of our tags in the regular draw just to see if we get lucky and if not maybe one of us will have a tag in the future and will get another year of enjoyment of hunting together.

Here are my questions on Unit 74:

What are the road systems like out there? I'll be ordering my Unit map the next week or so but with never being out there, I'm just curious how accessible the roads are throughout the unit? The unit looks to be fairly "secluded" compared to other units and that is part of the reason I like it. We do not mind putting boots on the ground and fully intend to do so, but just wanted to know what the roads were like.

Has as anyone ever camped in the Unit with a camper? We will likely be flying into Denver and driving up and I have a relative who has a camper we can use. Just curious if there are any decent camping spots located within the unit? Looks like the closest hotel is in Shoshoni so not too bad of a drive if we decide to stay there.

Thanks in advance guys and looking forward to contributing to the forum as much as I can.
 

Fish

Active Member
Jul 8, 2011
319
3
WA State
I hunted that unit 3 years ago. Some very nice antelope in it. I camped in my F-150 so I was able to just pull off and camp on BLM land. I hunted only the SE section of 74 and some of the blm roads could be a little rough for a camper rig. The main roads were good as long as there not wet. Maybe take the camper off the truck and do your scouting without it or get some camping gear from your relative and rent a 4x4.
 

DABAU

New Member
Jan 22, 2014
34
1
Georgia
Fish: Thanks for the info. Not sure how much moisture you got while you were there but if we have a 4x4 you think we be ok on the main roads if they did receive some moisture or they hit or miss depending on how much rain/snow fell.
 

Musket Man

Veteran member
Jul 20, 2011
6,457
0
colfax, wa
There is a main road that pretty much runs the border of the unit that is a pretty decent gravel road that you would have no problem taking a camper on. I cant remember if it follows the border in the NE part of the unit or not? There is also a road that runs north/south through it that I think is a decent road but I have never been on it. Other then that it is mostly 2 track roads that you probabally wouldnt want to take a camper on without driving with just the truck or walking to see how they are first.
 

Topgun 30-06

Banned
Jun 12, 2013
1,354
1
Allegan, MI
In order to hunt this year with a 100% chance of drawing you'll definitely need to apply in the Special draw. Having said that, I'd put in for unit 75 in the Special and draw it. It's a lot bigger unit and has good numbers and good bucks and is closer to Riverton if you have to stay in a motel. It's really best to camp out in any of those units because they're so far from anything, including gas and water, so take lots of extra of both. Riverton is a long way from both units and has a number of motels, but Shoshoni doesn't have much of anything as far as motels are concerned. Never go out there without at least one set of good chains and it's preferable to have all four wheels chained because it takes very little moisture to make all but the gravel roads impassable out there even with one set on.
 

DABAU

New Member
Jan 22, 2014
34
1
Georgia
Topgun thank you for the advice. Just out of curiosity, do you think Unit 75 is that much better than 74 or is your recommendation based off the size and accessibility as you mentioned in your reply.
 

Musket Man

Veteran member
Jul 20, 2011
6,457
0
colfax, wa
On the main gravel roads will be fine if you get some snow or rain but the 2 track and dirt roads will turn to snot in a hurry if you get much moisture at all and it typically wont freeze hard enough at night to get a truck out if you get in trouble. I always carry a set of chains with me and they have saved my butt more then once! If its supposed to rain or looking like it will I would suggest getting the truck out to gravel just to be safe. I like to take my 4 wheeler and use it off of the main roads. The weather can change in a hurry in that country too. 2 years ago out there I went to sleep with perfectly clear skies and woke up to over an inch of snow.
 

WapitiBob

Veteran member
Mar 1, 2011
1,366
41
Bend, Orygun
Quads work wonders in WY if you have one. Last year after the snow I was the only guy hunting my area except for a little 2 mile stretch of county road. Nobody could get off the pavement, but the quad is light enough to stay on top and not sink.
 

MWScott72

Active Member
Jan 27, 2012
220
0
West Jordan, UT
Yep...WY dirt/2 track roads (except the improved gravel roads mentioned) turn to crap in no time with just a small amount of moisture (think gooey clay). They dry out fairly fast too if the conditions are right, but you will be in a world of hurt if you are unprepared. I always bring a 4-wheeler when hunting WY...and it's usually in the back of my truck.
 
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DABAU

New Member
Jan 22, 2014
34
1
Georgia
I've made a few calls since I originally posted this morning and I think I will have access to a 4 wheeler. That sounds like that may be a nice addition just in case the weather turns for the worst. This is exactly why you do the research as I honestly had not considered taking a 4 wheeler(shame on me). With that being said, what are the rules as far as having the ATV on BLM land? I did a quick search and if I interpret it correctly are you supposed to stay on the designated roads/trails unless you are going to retrieve an animal?
 

MWScott72

Active Member
Jan 27, 2012
220
0
West Jordan, UT
My experience is you stay on "established roads/trails". If there is a "road closed" marker, it's off-limits. Also, only public roadways (state highways, county roads, etc.) will allow you access through private property. If it's not a public roadway, and you're trying to access a block of public land through private property, you can be cited for trespassing if caught.
 

WapitiBob

Veteran member
Mar 1, 2011
1,366
41
Bend, Orygun
Just use it instead of your truck when you get in a little ways and you should be fine. Spot some animals and start hiking. Most are road hunters so once you get over the first hill you're probably going to be alone. I've only seen one area where off road was allowed and that is in NM, a specific forest, and specific to game retrieval. I don't know of any BLM or state land that is open to unrestricted off roading.
 

Colorado Cowboy

Veteran member
Jun 8, 2011
7,760
3,524
80
Dolores, Colorado
I have hunted 74 for since the mid 80's. Was there in 2012 when my hunting buddy and I got 6 (2 does/1 buck each). The main N/S Co road (can't remember the # right off) is on the eastern edge of the unit. Lots of traffic on it, especially during the week from the oil & gas rig workers. Lots of Walk In area. If you drive on the existing roads/2 tracks...stay on them! We went 100' off one to get a doe with our 4 wheelers and could have got a citation for it, just got a warning from a warden. He said a worker at a drilling site called him.

In 2012 it was full on in the drought and the antelope numbers were way down from what I have experienced in the past. My guess was we saw about 1/2 as many animals as I would have expected. If you hunt this unit, my advice would be to stay away from opening weekend, all the locals hunt then. We hunted the second week of the season and saw no other hunters. Lots of BLM to camp on. I got a decent buck after passing up 50+ bucks, was 14.5 and probably in the mid 70's. My buddy shot a smaller one, his first goat. I did see an 80's buck AFTER I killed mine. I would definitely take a 4 wheeler (or 2), remember to get a Wyo sticker for it.
 

PlainsHunter

Active Member
Feb 29, 2012
430
32
Central MN
DABAU- I hunted unit 75 last year and did see quite a few antelope in the south eastern part of the unit just north of unit 74. +1 on all the comments about the roads. It started to rain and snow and I wished I had an ATV of some sort to use as it was difficult to travel on the non-paved roads.
 

Topgun 30-06

Banned
Jun 12, 2013
1,354
1
Allegan, MI
DABAU---I recommended 75 over 74 because it's got a lot more area with good numbers goats and it spreads the hunters out better because of it's size.
 

DABAU

New Member
Jan 22, 2014
34
1
Georgia
Guys I appreciate all of the advice/input. I have a much better gameplan now and will definitely incorporate the 4 wheelers into my hunt. I had already planned on hunting the second week to let the crowds die down and it sounds like that is the best route to go. I'll have to do a little more research on the 4 wheelers and where you can drive them. Colorado Cowboy your comment about getting a warning has me a little perplexed. According to the Wyoming BLM website it states the following under their OHV Use page: "Limited vehicle travel off existing or designated roads and trails to accomplish "necessary tasks" such as campsite selection or big game retrieval is allowed only if travel does not cause resource damage, create new roads or extend existing roads. It is not always possible to retrieve downed game with a vehicle. Be prepared and bring a game cart, pack frame or horses to retrieve your game."

It's not really a big deal either way as we aren't talking about having to pack a 1,000 lb animal out but just like to know the exact rules. I'm going to call the field office tomorrow and see what they tell me.
 
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Triple BB

Active Member
Jun 22, 2013
296
16
Wyoming
The only bad thing about 74 and a few other area's out that way is quality has tanked in the past three years. Look at what they gave out for tags in 2011 and the last two seasons. Drought conditions and a few hard winters have knocked the antelope numbers down significantly. Two years ago they were saying 74 lost just over a quarter of its herd in one year. This winter has been pretty harsh and who knows what the spring will bring...
 

Colorado Cowboy

Veteran member
Jun 8, 2011
7,760
3,524
80
Dolores, Colorado
Guys I appreciate all of the advice/input. I have a much better gameplan now and will definitely incorporate the 4 wheelers into my hunt. I had already planned on hunting the second week to let the crowds die down and it sounds like that is the best route to go. I'll have to do a little more research on the 4 wheelers and where you can drive them. Colorado Cowboy your comment about getting a warning has me a little perplexed. According to the Wyoming BLM website it states the following under their OHV Use page: "Limited vehicle travel off existing or designated roads and trails to accomplish "necessary tasks" such as campsite selection or big game retrieval is allowed only if travel does not cause resource damage, create new roads or extend existing roads. It is not always possible to retrieve downed game with a vehicle. Be prepared and bring a game cart, pack frame or horses to retrieve your game."

It's not really a big deal either way as we aren't talking about having to pack a 1,000 lb animal out but just like to know the exact rules. I'm going to call the field office tomorrow and see what they tell me.
The area was designated as a "Walkin Area" by F & G, has nothing to do with BLM rules.